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Pot-Roasted Pork Loin Stuffed with Prunes & Dried Apricots

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Serves four to six.

  • To learn more, read:
    Dressing Up Pork Loin
  • by from Fine Cooking
    Issue 53

The combination of roast pork and dried fruit is time-honored and hard to beat. In this recipe, the pork is stuffed with fruit and almonds and served in a spicy red wine sauce that’s reminiscent of sauerbraten. I like to use a full-bodied red wine, such as one from the Rhône or a Syrah. Wild rice is a good accompaniment.

  • 2-lb. boneless pork loin
  • 1/2 cup dried apricots
  • 4 to 6 whole blanched almonds, toasted
  • 1/2 cup pitted prunes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 1 Tbs. vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp. ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp. ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 cup red-wine vinegar
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 1 cup veal stock or homemade or low-salt canned chicken broth; more if needed

Heat the oven to 350°F. Trim the pork and  make a horizontal slit in the meat, cutting almost through to the other side. Open the meat flat, like a book, so it's an even thickness.

Pot-Roasted Pork Loin Stuffed with Prunes & Dried Apricots Recipe

Stuff 4 to 6 of the apricots with almonds and wrap each apricot with a prune. Lay the prunes along the center of the cut surface of the pork, adding more stuffed fruit if needed. Roll the pork up so that it forms a tight cylinder. Tie the roast at 1-inch intervals. Sprinkle it on all sides with salt and pepper. Coarsely chop the remaining prunes and apricots.

Pot-Roasted Pork Loin Stuffed with Prunes & Dried Apricots Recipe

Heat the butter and oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat and brown the pork thoroughly on all sides, 8 to 10 minutes total. Take out the pork, add the onion, and sauté until it starts to turn brown, about 3 minutes. Stir in 1/2 tsp. pepper, the thyme, cinnamon, cloves, and nutmeg and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the vinegar and simmer 1 minute. Add the wine and simmer until it’s reduced by almost half, 10 to 12 minutes. Stir in the chopped fruit and the stock or broth. Replace the pork, pushing it down into the sauce, cover the pot, and bring to a boil.

Put the pork in the heated oven and cook, basting with the pan juices and turning occasionally, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of the meat registers 145°F, about 45 minutes. If the sauce reduces rapidly during cooking, add more broth. When the pork is done, the sauce should be dark and reduced by about half with a slightly thick consistency; if it’s thin, remove the meat and reduce the sauce by simmering it on the stovetop.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on six servings; Calories (kcal): 400; Fat (g): fat g 18; Fat Calories (kcal): 160; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 7; Protein (g): protein g 34; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 7; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 19; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 240; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 100; Fiber (g): fiber g 3;

Photo: Scott Phillips (top photo); Amy Albert (all others)

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