|(our thanksgiving preparation)|
Thanksgiving was magnificent. We convened in Long Island, this year, my mother's house the chosen haven for the splendid spread. Cooking went quite smoothly, because of low maintenance. Dad wanted to try something new, so he ordered a fried turkey from a catering service. So instead of lurking by a hot oven waiting for the bird to bake, we spent this year making small specialties. Mom made her famous chicken and shrimp blend and grandma brought curried goat. I contributed a candied ginger cranberry sauce and a pork loin recipe I've been dying to try.
1 pack of Johnsonville Chicken Sausage
4 Small Granny Smith Apples
1 Chopped Red Onion
1 Bag of Cubed Herb Seasoned Stuffing
1 Bag of Craisins (Dried Cranberries)
2 Cups of Apple Juice
1 tsp. Lemon Pepper
2 tsp. of Powdered Garlic
1 Egg (Lightly Beaten)
2 (2.5 or Smaller) Pork Loins
1 tbsp. of Cooking Oil (Olive, Peanut or Corn)
Wok or Large Skillet
Straight Edge Steak Knife
Baking Dish (Two Quarts or Larger)
Wood Skewers or Cooking Twine
Meat Thermometer (Optional)
**If you're an experienced cook, feel free to improvise. Replace the seasonings with ones you'd rather savor, use a different sort of sausage or add an extra veggie! Celery might add a great crunch.**
1) Preheat your oven to 500°F. Peel your onions and apples. (Be sure to core apples, but I'm sure you knew that!) Chop apples and onion into small bits. Chop up your sausage, pepperoni style. Not too thin though!
2) Pour the cooking oil into the pan, on a medium flame, and add the cut apples, onions and sausages. Cook for 7-10 minutes and stir frequently.
3) Lower the flame. Add the bag of stuffing mix, the two cups of apple juice, cranberries and one egg. Stir until blended well. (Feel free to get mushy!) No more than five minutes. Don't forget to turn off your flame.
4) Unpack your meat unto a cutting board. You'll need to butterfly your pork loin. If you don't know what this means, head here.
After you're done cutting it in half and laying it across your cutting board, sprinkle a layer of garlic and lemon pepper on both sides of the loin. When you're done seasoning, gather a few spoonfuls of the stuffing and spread unto the pork loin. Press your stuffing to every corner with your hands. Roll pork loin horizontally and get ready to pin close. (Some people use cooking twine to close the roll, but I didn't have any on hand. I used skewers instead and they worked just fine!
5) Lightly grease your baking pan with cooking oil and lay your rolled loins inside of it. Cover with foil, place in oven. After ten minutes, you'll want to bring your oven down to 400°F.
(If you have remaining stuffing, place it in a smaller baking pan and put it in the oven for 30 minutes. You can serve it separately or on the side of your loin!)
6) After 50 minutes (or the meat temperature of 155°F), remove your loin from the oven. If you're unsure your meat is cooked, cut it to make sure the meat is mostly white. It might be very slightly pink.
**HEALTH WARNING: Typically this meal is only considered a safe leftover for two days, with refrigeration.**
I'm a huge fan of greens as decoration, so I used asparagus for this dish. Be sure to cut a few slices, to show the beauty of your stuffing.
My family and I absolutely enjoyed it. I can't wait to try it again with a different stuffing. After conquering the itis, discussing politics and the effects of Hurricane Sandy, we retired to the living room for an electronic game of family feud and jeopardy. This was all prompted by Grandma saying she wishes to get on one of the actual shows, because she was absolutely sure she'd take all. Oh, Grandma.
What was your special dish this Thanksgiving? Share your recipe in the comments below!
|(our table yesterday. my mother finally let me decorate this year!)|