I think sometimes people shy away from pork because it too often is overcooked and dry as can be. It doesn’t have to be, pork can be wonderful thing, it so easily takes on the flavors you choose. The massive pork loin I made last weekend for my hubbys birthday dinner came out great and was a HUGE hit! It was super simple too.
The pork is simply seasoned overnight with rosemary, salt, pepper and garlic powder. Roasted to perfection and finished off with a warm homemade rosemary applesauce. Served along with it I made garlic mashed potatoes, glazed carrots, string beans and a salad. These recipes are great for a big family gathering, definitely give it a try!
For the Homemade Rosemary Applesauce
6 golden delicious apples, peeled, cored and large diced
1 Tbsp chopped rosemary
1/2 stick butter
2 tsp cinnamon
2 tsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 cups water
For the Roasted Pork Loin
11 1/2 lb Pork Loin, some of the fat removed, cut into two equal pieces
4 tsp rosemary
4 tsp garlic powder
6 tsp salt
2 tsp pepper
1/4 cup olive oil
Bonus! Garlic Mashed Potatoes
5 lbs russet potatoes, peeled and diced
1/2 stick butter
6 garlic cloves, smashed
1 3/4 cups light cream
Oven at 375 degrees.
For the pork… In a small bowl mix the rosemary, garlic powder, salt, pepper and olive oil. To really allow the flavor to penetrate the pork I rubbed the seasoning on the night before, covered with plastic and into the fridge.
Time to cook the pork. The two pieces took approx 45-55 minutes to cook. Remove the pork from the fridge an hour prior to cooking it. Place the pieces of pork on separate baking sheets and and switch shelves half way through the cooking time. After approx 45-50 minutes I placed each piece of pork under the broiler for 5 minutes to ensure a browned and crisp skin. Isn’t it beautiful!!!
(*note: I have an electric oven which tends to cook slower then a gas oven, be sure to use a meat thermometer to ensure the pork is cooked to the correct temperature)
Allow the pork to rest for at least 10 minutes to let the juices redistribute into the meat.
For the applesauce… While the pork is cooking you can get the applesauce cooked. To a large sauté pan, over medium heat, add the butter, apples, rosemary, sugar, cinnamon and salt. Cook for approx 8-10 minutes until slightly softened.
Add in the water and simmer for another 10 minutes. Using an immersion blender, carefully blend the mixture to the consistency of your preference. Once again, allow the applesauce to simmer for another 5 minutes or so. I served it warm over the pork.
For the potatoes…. Place the potatoes into a pot of cold water and salt, bring to a boil and allow to cook until tender. Drain and place back into the pot.
While the potatoes are cooking, place the butter and garlic into a small pot and cook until the garlic has softened a bit. Add the light cream and allow to simmer on low for 10-15 minutes. You do not want it to boil! The next step is your choice, you can either remove the garlic cloves from the liquid or leave them in.
Add the garlic cream into the pot of potatoes and mash to the consistency of your choice. Season with salt and pepper.
Happy 28th Birthday Steve!!!