“Oh! I have something for you!” Lydia said as she handed me a bag of something or other. I’ve come to notice in recent months that when a friend “has something for me” he or she is usually referring to a food item. Last time it was lavender, this time it was: a giant pork loin. My instincts were correct!
Lydia handed me a rather large pork loin still somewhat frozen in an oversized ziplock bag.
Thanks! I replied.
It’s just not everyday that someone gives you a pork loin.
“My mom was cleaning out her freezer and thought you could do something with this.”
“Oh, I can!”
So major shout out and thanks to Carol Pegues Dorsey for her kind gift! I thought about you while making the below pork loin (and that’s what she said….). In all seriousness, this dish is a clearly delicious treat for those of you who like to mix your salty and sweet flavors: take a 3 lbs or so pork loin and stuff it with cranberries, walnuts, and homemade croutons, and you’re sure to impress whoever is lucky enough to eat it.
Cranberry Walnut Stuffed Pork Loin
This recipe is a variation of Elise Bauer’s Cranberry Apple Stuffed Pork Loin over at Simply Recipes (the original can be found here). Not having an apple on hand, I decided to double the cranberry ingredients to balance out the salty-sweet combination in the filling. Make the below recipe as portioned, or 1/2 the cranberries and include 1 chopped apple.
* 1 3 lb pork loin, thawed
* sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
* 1 cup seasoned croutons (or homemade)
* 1/2 cup chicken stock
* 2/3 cup dried cranberries
* 1/3 cup walnuts
* 1/3 cup minced shallots, or green onions
* 2 tablespoons maple syrup
* 1 teaspoon minced rosemary
1.) Preheat oven to 325F. Begin by preparing the pork loin: make an incision lengthwise along the roast and all the way through going to the very edge, but not puncturing or separating the two layers. Then, cut an incision into the top and bottom layers while also cutting small slits into the two layers. Lay flat and pound with a meat pounder to tenderize.
2.) Prepare the filling: add 1 cup seasoned croutons to 1/2 cup chicken broth. Allow to sit for 5 minutes.
3.) Using a potato masher, mash the croutons well, but with some remaining texture.
4.) Add cranberries, walnuts, shallots (or green onions), rosemary, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well.
5.) Spread mixture along the inside of the roast making sure to stuff it into the incisions.
6.) Tightly wrap one layer of the pork loin ontop of the other. If filling falls out while you’re wrapping it, just push it back in.
7.) Tie with kitchen string and place on a roasting wrack in the oven for 1 hour and 10 minutes.
8.) Allow to cool for 5 minutes and serve in 1/2 inch circular cutlets. Makes 6-8. Enjoy!Cranberry Walnut Stuffed Pork Loin, Google+
Written by: Helana Brigman