I must confess. I was looking for yet another pork roast recipe. Something edgy. Something new. One that I didn’t think I’d ever make. Something unpredictable, like those rhinestoned cowboy boots I bought last May and pronounced them to be my Mother’s Day present.
I was hosting a dinner party last Friday. Prep and make ahead recipes are so important to entertaining sanity. You don’t want to be rushed, serving slightly over or undercooked food. Timing can be tricky if not well planned. You don’t want the crowd to have an excessive amount of time for cocktails…no slurring at the dinner table.
Oven braised meats seem to fit that category very nicely. How about a pork roast. Is there really such a thing as a bad pork roast recipe? Probably not…but this one is a great pork roast recipe. This Pumpkin Cider brined, Mustard glazed Pork Loin Roast became my selection for entertaining the seven guests at my Fall dinner party.
Last month, Sprouts Farmer’s Market sent me some of their pumpkin products to sample. I decided to make poblano pepper mole for my sponsored post for them, but couldn’t resist finding a use for the pumpkin cider they sent.
This recipe is flexible, easy to get along with. Serve it either warm or at room temperature. But one hard fast rule is to serve it with this quick pickled cucumber relish. A fabulous combination of flavors that makes that mustard-slathered pork even more exciting than it already is.
Large biscuits or rolls for sandwiches, and Mashed Potato Casserole are excellent accompaniments.
- For the brine:
- 1/3 cup kosher salt
- 1/2 cup light brown sugar packed
- 2 tablespoons black peppercorns
- 2 tablespoons coriander seeds lightly crushed
- 2 tablespoons mustard seeds
- 12 thyme sprigs
- 2 leaves bay
- 4 cups pumpkin cider divided
- 1 5-pound boneless pork loin tied if desired
- For the pork:
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 1/2 cup country Dijon mustard
- 1/3 cup light brown sugar packed
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- 2 tablespoons thyme leaves
- 2 cups pumpkin cider
Bring salt, brown sugar, peppercorns, coriander seeds, mustard seeds, thyme, bay leaves, 2 cups apple cider, and 2 cups water to a low boil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Cook, whisking, until sugar and salt dissolve, about 4 minutes. Transfer brine to a large bowl and add remaining 2 cups cider and 2 cups ice. Let cool to room temperature.
Place pork and brine in a large resealable plastic bag; turn to coat. Seal and chill at least 8 hours.
Roast the pork:
Remove pork from brine and pat dry with paper towels. Let sit at room temperature 1 hour.
Place rack in lower third of oven; preheat to 400°F.
Season pork all over with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Sear pork, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides (including ends), 10–12 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine mustard, brown sugar, syrup, and thyme in a medium bowl.
Pour cider into a large roasting pan or glass baking dish. Transfer pork, fat side up, to pan. Brush all over with mustard mixture. Roast pork, basting every 15 minutes, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center registers 140°F, 50–70 minutes.
Transfer to a cutting board and let rest at least 15 minutes before slicing.
Pork can be brined up to 24 hours ahead. Keep chilled in plastic bag.
Pumpkin Cider brined, Mustard glazed Pork Loin Roast …It’s what’s for Dinner.