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Apple-Stuffed Stovetop-Smoked Pork Loin Roast
Boneless pork loin is naturally very lean and very easy to overcook, so watch it carefully. The apple stuffing nicely compliments the relatively mild flavor of the pork. Serve with roasted sweet potato wedges, sugar snap peas, and cranberry sauce. Note: This recipe requires some advanced preparation.
1 (2 1/2-pound) boneless pork loin roast
1 cup apple stuffing (recipe follows)
2 tablespoons Cajun spice
1 1/2 tablespoons apple wood shavings
Lightly trim any fat on the roast and score any remaining fat; butterfly the pork loin and lightly season the inside surfaces with Cajun spice. Spread stuffing inside the butterflied loin, fold the top section over the stuffing and tie the sections together with several pieces of butcher's twine. Season the outside of the loin with Cajun spice.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Prepare the stovetop smoker with 1 1/2 tablespoons of apple wood shavings under the drip pan. Position the drip pan and rack in the smoker. Place the roast on the cooking rack, fat side up, and cover all but one corner of the smoker with heavy-duty aluminum foil.
Place the smoker on the stovetop over medium heat. After smoke develops, tightly seal smoker and smoke for 30 minutes. Carefully transfer the smoker to the oven and continue cooking another 45 minutes.
Remove the aluminum foil and reserve. Continue cooking until the roast has an internal temperature of 155 degrees F., about another 20 to 25 minutes.
Remove the roast from the cooker, tent with reserved aluminum foil, and allow it to rest for 10 minutes before slicing.
Yield: 4 servings
Heat Scale: Mild
Extra stuffing may be put in a buttered casserole dish and baked, covered, at 350 degrees F. for about 30 minutes.
3 cups prepared stuffing mix
1 cup apple cider
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3/4 cup chopped celery (about 2 ribs)
1/2 cup chopped yellow onion (1 small onion)
1 tart apple (Granny Smith), cored and finely chopped
1 jalapeño chile, seeded and finely minced
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed rosemary
1 tablespoon minced fresh flat leaf parsley
1/2 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
In a medium skillet over medium-high heat, melt the butter. Add the celery and onion; sauté for 5 minutes. Add the chopped apple and minced jalapeño; cook until the apple is tender, about 5 minutes. Season with thyme, rosemary, parsley, salt, and pepper. Remove from heat.
Prepare the stuffing according to package directions, substituting apple cider for an equal amount of water. Stir in the sautéed fruit mixture and stir to combine. Allow the stuffing mixture to cool completely. (The stuffing may be prepared 1 day ahead and held refrigerated.)
Yield: About 5 cups
Heat Scale: Mild
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