It rained this morning. Something about rain makes for the perfect setting for staying in (bed). Ahem. I mean writing the essay due tomorrow. Fortunately, I decided I could easily dissuade myself from doing that by planning dinner for my mom. (A wise and mature decision that would make any mother proud.) So, I quickly closed my essay tab, browsed fall recipes online, and came across a lovely Bon Appétit recipe. Closing my essay window eased my guilt, and before I knew it I threw on some rain boots and headed to the grocery store.
A short while later I began prepping this gorgeous tenderloin. (Can tenderloins be gorgeous? This one was to me.) I actually waited to make dinner with my mom, instead of for her. We’ve always loved cooking together and have the easiest companionship. It’s something we both miss and are adjusting to living apart. I had blanched the kale beforehand and let it cool, and honestly, the rest of the recipe was quick work. I’m thankful I chose a stuffed pork loin though, because I learned something new today – how to butterfly a cut of meat. It’s the simplest thing, but one I simply hadn’t done. It turned out great!
- 1 cup brown mushrooms
- ¾ cup chopped apples
- 1 pound kale
- 2 tsp salt
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 cup minced onion
- 1 tbsp finely minced garlic
- 1½ tsp dried thyme
- 1½ tsp dried rosemary
- 2 tbsp bourbon
- ½ tsp ground black pepper
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 trimmed 2.5-3 lb pork loin
- 1 tsp kosher salt
- ½ ground black pepper
- 2 ounces prosciutto
- 5 sprigs rosemary
- 4 medium apples
- 3 tbsp unsalted butter
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 cup dry hard cider (we used Strongbow)
- Blanch kale in boiling salted water, about 1 minute.
- Drain kale, and place on baking sheet in the fridge until cooled.
- In a large skillet on medium heat, add butter.
- Once heated, add onion, sauteeing until lightly golden 8-10 minutes.
- Add mushrooms & apples, cooking about 5 more minutes.
- Add garlic, thyme, and rosemary, cooking 1 more minute.
- Add bourbon, cooking until liquid has absorbed, about 1 minute.
- Season with 2 teaspoons of salt and ½ teaspoon of pepper.
- Empty mixture into a bowl, allowing to cool completely.
- Once cooled, add ground pork, mixing until combined.
- Butterfly your pork loin, so that it is about ½" thick.
- Once butterflied, cover with plastic wrap, and pound to an even thickness with a meat mallet.
- Remove plastic wrap, and season pork with 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper.
- Place kale leaves, overlapping, on rolled out loin.
- Evenly spread cooled ground pork, mushroom, and apple mixture on top of kale.
- Roll pork tightly into a cylinder.
- Wrap roast with prosciutto, then tie roast with kitchen twine, about 1" inch apart down the whole roast.
- Tuck rosemary under kitchen twine.
- Preheat oven to 400F.
- In a large skilet on medium-high heat, melt 1 tablespoon of butter.
- Once heated, add pork, searing til browned on each side, about 5 minutes.
- Place halved apples in a roasting pan, then place roast on top of apples.
- Add cider and ½ cup water to your skillet, scraping off browned bits, then pour liquid into your roasting pan.
- Roast pork until it registers an internal temperature of 140F, about 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes.
- Let roast rest 20 minutes before serving.
- Serve roasted apples whole, with the pork, or blend them into an apple sauce for the pork.
Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit.
I have to tell on mom here, because she honestly has the best sense of humor. When I asked how we would go about using the butterfly technique, mom took a paring knife and portioned it out on a banana. This of course led to jokes about all the things you can illustrate using a banana as a teaching tool. Terrible. Bob thinks she’s hilarious.
I have to say it’s a shame mom doesn’t cook the way I do – with a glass of wine in hand. I was happy with the recipe though because I snuck in some Knob Creek instead of brandy, and Foundry as the hard cider the recipe called for. May as well cook with liquor right? The extra cider was served on ice while the pork cooked – a first for mom!
Thanks for coming to dinner mom.