Saturday night is when our small group meets and we share a meal. This week my assignment was ‘main dish’. After being plagued by indecision, I looked through the Meijer ads and decided on pork loin. There are so many things you can do with one of those . . . oh, the choices. Because we number 14 adults and 6 kids, I bought 2 half loins and decided to do them differently.
I’ve mentioned before one of my favorite ways but I also wanted something more . . . interesting. While wandering the grocery aisles, I picked up a jar of inspiration . . . well, actually it came in a burlap sack. I bought some basmati rice and I cooked that with some onion, garlic, carrots and a splash of olive oil. Then I mixed in some (and then some more) jerk seasoning from mathuaerknedam (who doesn’t post enough ) a good scoop of apricot preserves, lime zest and a little more onion and garlic.
Then I cut my pork loin in a ‘Z’ cut (cut the top in one direction until 1/2″ from the edge, cut the bottom from the opposite direction until 1/2″ from the edge and lay flat). I spread the rice mixture all over the pork and rolled it up and rubbed pressed garlic over the top. I covered it and baked it in a glass pan at 350F for about 1.5 hr then opened it up, smeared apricot preserves all over the top and baked it uncovered for about 15 minutes. Then I removed it from the oven and let it rest. Unfortunately, I don’t have any pics of the lovely finished product b/c I cut the ends off to keep for us and took the rest to the small group and didn’t stay b/c we had sick kiddos
The other loin I made with garlic rubbed all over and rosemary sprinkled on top (baked similarly w/o the apricot) and I made some chunky applesauce to go with it. The applesauce was made with 5 braeburn apples, 1 golden delicious apple, sugar, a squirt of lemon juice, cinnamon and nutmeg. I cooked it for about an hour but it wasn’t getting very saucy in that time so I added a couple spoons of unsweetened store brand applesauce. It was tasty. We had a discussion about how frequently people combine pork and apple — I actually don’t often, but it makes a tasty combo.