Monday, October 10, 2011

Pork Roast with Hard Cider Gravy

The weather definitely turned to Autumn here in Montana.  This time of year my thoughts always turn to cooking and baking.  I love soups simmering on the stove, bread baking in the oven, baskets of shiny apples on the counter and hot, spicy drinks.  I also like simple, hearty, down-to-earth foods.  This recipe certainly fills the bill.  I got it off the Food Network, changed it up a bit and loved the result.  I served it with a pilaf made from bits and pieces in the fridge, but it would be great with roasted or smashed potatoes.  The sauce would make a hunk of cardboard seem tasty.  By the way, I love, love, love this Hardcore cider.  I found it for $5.55 per six pack (for you folks that are close, it's at Super 1) and like it better than Hornsby's.  And since the recipe only calls for one bottle, and there are five left... Well, it's a dirty job, but someone's got to clean out the fridge.  Can't have stuff like this in there for too long.  It might mold or something.

3 tablespoons butter, divided
2 ½ pound pork loin roast, trimmed and tied
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
1 teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon allspice
½ teaspoon nutmeg
1 onion, peeled and sliced
2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1 bottle (12 oz.) hard cider
Heat a large Dutch oven over medium heat.  When the pan is hot, add 2 tablespoons of butter.  Season the pork generously with salt and pepper.  Mix cinnamon, allspice and nutmeg and rub over the roast.  Sear roast on all sides in the hot pan until golden brown; set aside.  Add the onions and apples and season again with salt and pepper.  Cook, until they begin to caramelize, then pour in the hard cider and scrape the brown bits off the bottom of the pan.  Bring to a simmer and nestle the browned pork roast back into the pan.  Cover with a lid and put in the oven to braise until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees F (30 – 45 minutes.)
Remove the roast from the pot and transfer to a carving board; tent with foil to keep warm.  Transfer the contests of the pot to a food processor or blender and puree, then return the puree to the pan.  Alternately, puree the contents of the pan with an immersion blender.  Bring to a boil, adjust seasonings then reduce the heat to low and add more cider if the gravy is too thick.  Add the remaining tablespoon of butter, whisking constantly as it melts.  Remove from heat when the gravy is smooth and shiny and the butter is completely melted.
Meanwhile, slice the pork roast and arrange on a serving platter.  Serve with sauce.
Note:  I might add a splash of brandy along with the cider next time.

1 comment:

  1. Gracious! That looks soooo good! I'm looking forward to this fall for cooking too. Love, Aubrey