Pork Loin

Pork LoinPork is one of the most commonly consumed meats in the world, both for it’s ease of production and for it’s versatility in cooking. Think about how much bacon is consumed globally on a daily basis. Add in some sausage and that number grows dramatically. Not to mention ham sandwiches…

Pork is not just fatty cured goodness, however. For Fall weather cooking, there are few things that are better than a slow-roasted Pork Loin.

Unlike beef, which is divided into eight primal parts, the pig is only broken down in to four. The first two sections are the shoulder and the belly…mmmm, bacon. The hind leg or ham is the largest of the four. The back, or loin, comes next, and is and is probably the most popular.

The loin can be sold whole or cut into three parts called the sirloin end, the center-cut loin, and the blade end. If you are someone who enjoys a nice pork roast, this is the section that your roast comes from. It is also the same section of the pig that produces your favorite bone-in chops, and the always impressive crown roast.

Because it is so lean, the cuts from the back area of the pig can tend to dry out if not cooked correctly. As a general rule, pork should be cooked to a final temperature of 150-165º Fahrenheit. To ensure you don’t end up with a dry roast, remove it from the oven when the internal temperature reaches 145-155º Fahrenheit. And then let it rest for 20 to 30 minutes. The carryover heat will keep the roast cooking to achieve the proper temperature without overcooking. Brining the meat before roasting can also be helpful.

Choose pork for Fall weather cooking because it’s flavor stands up well to the sweet flavors that go with the fall. Apples, maple syrup, sweet potatoes and cinnamon all compliment any pork entrée.

For a perfect example, check out this recipe for Stuffed Roast Pork Loin with Figs, on our What’s For Dinner Wednesday blog.

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