Pork, pork and more pork

Had 4 of my board gaming buddies around today for an all day session of Android. It’s a wonderful but complex game, set in a “Blade Runner” type world. I was providing lunch, but I wanted something that I could prepare in advance, and require a minimum of attention while we were playing.

I read a nice recipe for loin of pork, where it is cooked on a bed of cooking apples, which go to make the sauce. I liked the sound of this, so I looked for a loin yesterday, but they were all quite small. In the end I bought one that might feed a family of 4, so I also bought a tenderloin, which was on offer.

For the tenderloin, I didn’t do anything but wrap it in bacon, using one of my new Cookamesh mats to hold it neatly together. The loin of pork I did with a simple dry rub of salt, black pepper, paprika, dark brown sugar and cinnamon, then sat it on a tray of cubed bramley apples and granny smiths.

When people arrived at about 10:30, both bits of pig went in the pellet grill on smoke for an hour (using cherry), then got switched to medium (about 325 F) until done. The tenderloin was done first, so went into the cooler – this might sound strange, but if you put hot food in an insulated cooler, it stays hot, especially when the rest of the cooler is filled with woollen pads. When the loin was done, it joined it there, for a good 30 minute rest.

While they were resting, I put on some boiled spuds, and then mashed up the mixture of cooked apple and pork juices. It was a bit too spicy so I added two spoons of my favourite onion relish and reheated it all as a serving sauce.

I was actually so concerned how hot and spicy the sauce was. I was afraid I had overdone the paprika, and that the loin might be too hot for some folk’s taste. So while the grill was hot, and the meat was resting, I put in some sausages I had in the fridge, thinking they would be a standby if the loin wasn’t edible for all.

The meat carved beautifully, and I shouldn’t have worried. The loin was very nice and not too spicy, the tenderloin was particularly succulent. The sauce was remarkable, considering how simple it was.

As for the sausages, I’d thought that if I didn’t need them, they’d go in the fridge for later, but I didn’t get the chance. They went too!

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