Imagine taking ground pork, wrapping a pork loin around it and then wrapping more pork around that. If you’ve seen the October cover of Bon Appetit, you’ve already seen this trifecta of pork and if you’re willing to put in a few hours of work, you can experience the amazing dinner that we just finished up for yourself.
To create this homage to pork, you start out by butterflying a pork loin, something that I had never attempted previously, and then pounding it out to a nice even thickness. If you haven’t ever attempted to butterfly a pork loin before, you can always ask your butcher to help or you can follow this handy guide that Bon Appetit created.
You’d think that the pork loin or the prosciutto would be the pork that really sets this dish apart, and while they certainly do their share, it’s the filling that really makes this thing amazing. To start, you reconstitute dried porcini mushrooms and dried apples. They are chopped and mixed together with sauteed onions, thyme and rosemary. Then it’s mixed with the ground pork and spread over the flattened pork loin that’s been covered with blanched kale.
It’s all rolled up and wrapped with prosciutto and finally tied up tight with kitchen twine. It’s roasted along with chopped apples, and seriously, is there anything that goes better with pork than apples? We’re not done there either. The juices from the roast are combined with the water that the mushrooms were soaked in to create the perfect sauce to top it all off.
Overall, it wasn’t too difficult and it’s certainly something I would try again. It’s important to have a digital thermometer to be able to monitor your temperature and then check it in a few places to make sure it’s all at least 140 degrees.
Prosciutto-Wrapped Pork Loin with Roasted Apples
adapted from Bon Appetit
- 1 ounce (1 cup) dried whole porcini mushrooms
- 2 ounces (3/4 cup) dried apples
- 1 pound kale, bottom stems trimmed
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt plus more
- 2 tablespoons (1/4 stick) unsalted butter
- 1 cup minced onion
- 1 tablespoon finely minced garlic
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1 1/2 teaspoons dried rosemary
- 2 tablespoons apple juice
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 pound ground pork
- 1 (trimmed) 2 1/2–3-lb. pork loin
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt plus more for seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper plus more for seasoning
- 3 ounces thinly sliced prosciutto
- 5 sprigs rosemary
- 4 medium apples (such as Granny Smith or Fuji), quartered, or 8 small apples, halved
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup apple juice
- 1/2 cup low-salt chicken stock
Place dried mushrooms and dried apples in separate small bowls. Add 1 cup boiling water to each bowl. Let mushrooms and apples soak until very soft, about 30 minutes. Strain mushrooms. Cover and chill soaking liquid (about 3/4 cup). Drain apples, discarding soaking liquid. Finely chop mushrooms and apples, combine in a small bowl, and set mushroom and apple mixture aside.
Meanwhile, blanch kale in boiling salted water just until wilted, about 1 minute. Using tongs, transfer kale to a rimmed baking sheet. Refrigerate until cool. Remove any large, tough ribs.
Melt butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onion; cook, stirring often, until soft and lightly golden, about 8 minutes. Add mushrooms and apples; cook, stirring occasionally, until flavors meld, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic, thyme, and rosemary; cook for 1 minute. Add juice and cook until liquid is absorbed, about 1 minute. Stir in 2 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Transfer mixture to a bowl and let cool completely. Add ground pork and stir to combine well.
To butterfly, put pork loin on a work surface with short end facing you. Holding a long, thin sharp knife parallel to work surface and beginning along one long side, cut 1/2″ above underside of roast. Continue slicing inward, pulling back the meat with your free hand and unrolling the roast like a carpet, until the entire loin is flat. Cover with a sheet of plastic wrap. Using a meat mallet, pound to an even thickness.
Uncover pork. Season with 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. pepper. Place kale leaves on top of loin in an even layer, overlapping as needed and leaving a 1″ border. Spread filling on top of kale. Roll pork into a tight cylinder. Wrap one layer of prosciutto around roast. Tie roast securely with kitchen twine in 1″ intervals. Tuck rosemary sprigs under twine, spacing apart.
DO AHEAD: Pork roast can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill. Let stand at room temperature for 1 hour before continuing.
Preheat oven to 400°. Place apples in a roasting pan. Melt 1 Tbsp. butter with oil in a large skillet. Brown pork on all sides, about 5 minutes total, then set on top of apples in pan. Add juice and 1/2 cup water to skillet and bring to a boil, scraping up browned bits. Pour mixture into roasting pan. Roast pork until an instant-read thermometer inserted into center of loin registers 140° (it will be cooked medium but still slightly pink), about 1 hour 40 minutes. Let roast rest for at least 20 minutes and up to 2 hours.
Put roast on a platter. Reserve apples from roasting pan; spoon off fat from juices in pan. Place pan on top of stove over medium-high heat. Add chicken stock. Pour in reserved mushroom liquid, leaving any sediment behind, and cook, scraping bottom of pan to release any browned bits, until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes. Whisk in remaining 2 Tbsp. butter and season to taste with salt and pepper. Strain sauce; slice pork. Serve sauce and apples alongside sliced pork.
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I am sure you love food. Otherwise, you won’t be here. As a full-time and a part-time chef at a local restaurant, I know my way around food. Ever since I was a young girl, I enjoyed helping my mom in the kitchen.
We would often experiment with the spices, ingredients, and flavors and create great meals for my brothers and dad. Since cocking was my first passion, I decided to go in that direction. I finished culinary school, got my first job, and started developing my skills.
Later when kids came, I had all the liberty in the kitchen to combine some of the unique flavors. A lot of them were a success, but now and there I would make a couple of mistakes.