Eating is a necessity. However, we choose what to eat. The choices we make reveal a great deal about us. The food you eat can tell quite a bit about your heritage, your family, your fears, your sense of adventure, your attitude toward yourself and others, and a myriad of other personal tidbits to anyone paying attention. Everything about eating is a glimpse into your soul.

I hope to reveal a little bit about myself to you through my food. I enjoy cooking. I enjoy eating. I find pleasure in bringing pleasure to others. I hope that by sharing my recipes I bring you a little bit of joy.

Cook my food. Feed it to the people you love.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Stuffed Pork Loin Roast

I know that turkey is the traditional choice for Christmas.  I, however, am not a big fan of turkey.  Pork loin roast is an easy and tasty alternative.   

Servings: 8-10
Time:  Prep: 15,  cook time: 10 minutes, roast: 90 minutes
Hardware: Cutting board and knives, measuring spoons and cups, a wooden spoon, a mixing bowl, a small bowl, , a large skillet, kitchen twine, a roasting pan (or large, shallow, metal dish), a glass baking dish, a meat thermometer, and foil

  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • ½ pound bulk sausage
  • 1 large onion (1 cup)
  • 2 Granny Smith apples (1cup)
  • 2 tablespoons fresh sage
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • ½ tablespoon + 1 tablespoon Herbes de Provence
  • 3 cups day old cornbread
  • ½ loaf white bread
  • 2 eggs
  • S&P to taste
  • 2-3 cups chicken broth (maybe more)
  • 1 pork loin roast (2 ½ to 3 pounds), (Ask the butcher to butterfly it for you or read the instructions below)
  • Cooking spray

  1. Preheat the oven to 375º. 
  2. Roughly chop the onion.  Wash and peel the apples.  Remove the cores, and roughly chop them up. Chop the herbs as small as you can get them. Set aside.
  3. Cut the cornbread into rough cubes.  Remove the crust from the white bread and cut it into 1 inch cubes.  Place the breads into the mixing bowl.
  4. Thoroughly beat the eggs.  Set aside.
  5. Cut off about three 10 inch pieces of twine. Set aside.
  6. In the skillet heat the oil over medium high. Add the sausage, onion, apples, and fresh herbs. Sauté for 5-7 minutes or until the onions are translucent, the apples are soft, and the sausage is no longer pink. Stir often. Remove the mixture from the heat and allow it to cool completely.
  7. Stir the apple mixture, ½ tablespoon Herbes de Provence, eggs and S&P, into the bread. Do this gently; you don’t want everything to be mushy.
  8. Gently stir the chicken broth, a little bit at a time, into the breads crumbs.  You want the bread to be moist, not soggy!
  9. Spray the glass baking dish with cooking spray and spoon about ½ of the stuffing in into it.  Set aside.
  10. Starting on the longest side of the roast, spoon the rest of the stuffing along the edge. Roll the pork up over the stuffing.  Tie the roast closed with the kitchen twine.  Place the roast, seam down and fat up, in the roasting pan (or shallow metal pan).  Score the fat with a sharp knife.  Sprinkle the roast with S&P and the rest of Herbes de Provence. 
  11. Place the pork roast and the stuffing in the oven.  Cook the roast for about 25 minutes per pound or until the thermometer reads 150 º when inserted into the thickest part.  Bake the dish of stuffing for about 40 minutes.  Remove the roast (and the other stuffing) from the oven and tent with foil.  Allow everything to rest for 15 minutes before serving.
Serve with gravy.

Instructions from the National Pork Board on how to butterfly a pork loin roast:  To double butterfly the pork loin, lay the meat, fat-side down, on a work surface and make a horizontal lengthwise cut two-thirds of the way into the depth of the loin and about 1 inch from the long edge nearest you, taking care not to cut all the way through. Flip the loin over so that the cut you just made is opposite you. Make another lengthwise cut, again 1 inch from the edge. Open up the two cuts so you have a large rectangle of meat whose diameter is roughly 3 times the thickness of the meat. Place fat-side down and cover with a sheet of plastic wrap. Using the flat side of a cleaver or a meat pounder, gently flatten the meat to an even thickness.

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