Pork Roast with Apple Chestnut Stuffing

Fall is the time to showcase apples in this succulent roast of pork. Braeburn, Northern Spy and Crispin are all at their peak of flavour and make for a perfect accompaniment to the earthy chestnuts.

Serves 6

Ingredients:

1 tbsp (15 mL) butter
1 cup (250 mL) onion, finely diced
1 apple, cored and finely diced
2 tsp (10 mL) fresh ginger, finely chopped
2 tsp (10 mL) fresh garlic, finely chopped
½ tsp (2 mL) whole fennel seeds
½ tsp (2 mL) ground cardamom
1 cup (250 mL) roasted and peeled chestnuts, coarsely chopped
1 tbsp (15 mL) fresh sage, finely chopped
¼ cup (50 mL) water Salt and white pepper to taste
2 lb (1 kg) centre-cut pork loin, trimmed of all fat and tendon
Kitchen twine to secure roast
2 tbsp (25 mL) oil
1 cup (250 mL) apple cider
½ cup (125 mL) 35% cream

Preparation:

Heat butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add onions and cook for 10 minutes. Add apple, ginger, garlic, fennel seeds, cardamom, chestnuts, sage and water. Cook for 7 minutes longer, or until onions are translucent and all liquid has been reduced. Season with salt and white pepper to taste. Set aside to cool.

With a sharp knife, butterfly the loin by making a slit lengthwise through the middle of the loin, opening it like a book. Make sure not to slice all the way through the meat.

Generously season the pork with salt and pepper; spread the apple mixture on the right half of the loin. Fold over the left half and secure the roast with kitchen twine, making sure to replace any filling that has fallen out. Season again on the outside.

Heat the oil in a medium ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Carefully add the pork and brown well on all sides, about 20 minutes total. Place the skillet and pork in the oven and continue to cook until the internal temperature reads 160°F (70°C).

Remove pork from pan, cover with foil and let rest for 10 minutes.

In the same skillet over medium-high heat add apple cider and cook for 2 minutes, scraping up the browned bits on pan. Add cream and cook another minute longer, or until sauce is desired thickness. Season to taste.

Untie the roast, slice and serve with sauce.

You may be interested to read Cooking with Chestnuts