Our life living off the land in our log cabin, breathing fresh mountain air, and getting back to basics.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The Good, The Bad, and the Not So Ugly

I began by visualizing an awesome roasted pork loin & potatoes recipe inspired by my mom's roasted turkey, smothered in seasoned mayonnaise, resulting in a perfectly moist and brown turkey. 

The good?

Roasted Pork Loin & Potatoes

Pork Loin (mine was 3.5 lbs), fat trimmed to your taste
2 scoops mayonnaise
Palm full of whole cumin, broken up in a mortar and pestle
Palm full of whole fennel, broken in a mortal and pestle
Palm full of sage
Salt & pepper
Palm full of dried cumin
5 sprigs of fresh rosemary
All these herb amounts are based on taste preferences; you can add more or less to your liking

Take the pork loin out of the refrigerator so it begins to come to room temperature.  Trim away the fat, but you want to leave enough to create drippings that the potatoes will cook in (oooh, yummy).  Rub the dried cumin, salt and pepper all around the loin and let it rest while you prepare the mayonnaise paste.

Mix together the mayonnaise, cumin, fennel, sage and a little salt & pepper to make a paste, and cover the exposed parts of the loin (do not put it on the under side).

Put the pork loin onto a rack in a roasting pan (you don't want the loin to be sitting in the fat drippings, but you will use them for basting and for cooking the potatoes in) into a 300 degree oven. 

Check the roast after 60 minutes to see what the meat temperature is. Once you reach 120 degrees (with a meat thermometer), remove the roast from the rack, put it directly on the roasting pan on top of 2 or 3 rosemary sprigs, and add the potatoes.

 The bad?
 My meat thermometer already read 140, at which point you want to let the meat rest to finish it's cooking process, getting it to 160 degrees.   So I decided to remove the meat from the roaster, and let the potatoes cook with more rosemary sprigs.
 I tented the meat to keep it warm...

I increased the oven to 375 to roast the potatoes.  All is going well, until I check the temperature of the meat again.

The ugly?
The meat thermometer now reads 120 degrees...argh!!!  So I push all the beautifully golden-ing potatoes aside and put the meat back into the pan.  I keep the heat on 375.  Now I am cooking by temperature, which is really difficult as the potatoes are almost cooked already, but the meat is not. 

The good?
I use the tin foil from my tenting process and cut it into strips to cover my potatoes.  Works like a charm.  Meat keeps cooking, potatoes, well, they are cooking but not burning:)

The bad?
Meat thermometer reads 140.  Now I know there is a problem, as there is no way this meat is not cooked by now.  I take the risk and remove it all from the oven. 

The good?
I have this awesome electric knife I got from my mom and dad, and it slices meat like there is no tomorrow.  I thinly sliced the pork loin with my awesome knife, no effort required, and though it was not medium like I would have preferred, it was juicy.  Woo hoo!

The not so bad?
A little dry, but the juices are delightful, as is the flavor from the herbs I chose.  I do believe I am on to something here...will have to try again with a meat thermometer that works!

The not so ugly?
Overall, everything turned out OK.  Mountain Man actually really liked it (he likes dry meat, so this was my lucky day!)

Thanks for reading my blog, you are the best f/f/r/s/f's, see you tomorrow,


Osage Bluff Quilter said...

Interesting Mayonnaise?!?! To be truthful, I don't think I've ever tasted it. We've always used miracle whip.

Lise said...

Really Patti? For me it's kind of like butter, I use the real thing...LOL, I'm not even sure I know what miracle whip is made of!

Dad/Pepere said...

Sounds like a perfect roast for me too...I like it a little on the dry side! Looks yummy! Hugs!

Lise said...

Tasted good dad, even if it was dry! Hugs back:)