Tuesday, October 28, 2008

I love surpises
--Savory Pork Pot Roast

Savory Pork Pot Roast
Cheap. Fast. Good! Copyright 2005

1 boneless pork loin (3 to 3 ½ pounds) My roast was smaller
4 medium-size potatoes
2 medium-size onions
2 medium-size ribs celery
3 medium-size carrots or 1 cup (about 12) baby carrots
1 cup orange juice
¼ cup dry wine or apple juice I used apple cider
¼ cup ketchup
Juice of 1 lime I used a splash of bottled lemon juice
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
3 cloves fresh garlic, minced, or 1 tablespoon bottled minced garlic
1 teaspoon salt

1. Trim off and discard any excess fat from the roast and place it in a 5-quart or larger slow cooker. Peel (I didn't) and quarter the potatoes and add them, making sure they are at the bottom of the pot. Peel the onions and cut them in half. Cut each half into crescent-shaped slices about ½-inch thick. Put the onions in the pot. Cut the celery and carrots into 1-inch long pieces. (If using baby carrots, there’s no need to cut.) Add them to the pot.
2. In a 1-quart container or glass measure, whisk together the orange juice, wine, ketchup, lime juice, Worcestershire sauce, garlic and salt. Pour the mixture over the meat and vegetables. Cover the slow cooker and cook on low until the roast and vegetables are very tender, 8 to 10 hours. I cooked it on high for less time.

When I cook something the night before I'm serving it, I sometimes get really excited about eating it when it looks like it's going to be really good. Other times, I spend the entire next day thinking I don't want to go home and eat that slop for dinner.

I wasn't excited about eating this. For one thing, my mother-in-law made beef pot roast with carrots and potatoes for Sunday dinner so it was going to be somewhat repetitive to have this on Monday night. For another thing, I just didn't think this was going to taste very good. I spent all day trying to think of ways to doctor it up. I was considering removing the orange-flavored liquid and making gravy. I thought the meat might be stringy too - pork loin is touchy in the slow cooker since it's so lean.

However, when I took it out of the fridge and opened up the container, it looked good. The liquid was very gelatinous - usually a good sign of a rich flavorful broth. I tasted it and it tasted really good. So I just sliced the meat (which was tender and not stringy) and heated this up gently on the stovetop and, end of story - there were no leftovers. I was shocked and pleased that this recipe wasn't the disaster I thought it was going to be. It was darn good.

In another surprise I bought some fresh sweet corn to go along with this that was very, very good. So good, my husband who often passes on sweet corn altogether, ate two ears of it. Last week we had roasted sweet corn on a farm and it was the best ear of corn I've ever eaten in my life. Where is this great corn coming from in late October?

This cookbook was from the library. It focuses on cheap eating, obviously. And fast too - although this recipes isn't fast, you're supposed to save half of the roast for other 'quick' recipes but I used a smaller roast so there were no leftovers. This was relatively inexpensive although have you seen the price of potatoes lately? I think I paid close to $5 for a bag of them. I don't often buy bags of potatoes but I could swear that they used to cost less. There were cheaper options if I wanted rotting or green potatoes. I know I could get cheaper at the auction but I'm done with the auction until spring. I only needed a couple but they didn't have any loose potatoes for sale in my grocery store.

I bought the roast on markdown so that wasn't expensive. Pork loin pops up for $1.99/pound quite often and occasionally even less. It's rare to find a cut of beef to pot roast at that price. You do need to be careful though - like I said pork loin is touchy in the crock pot.

Question of the Day: What is your favorite potato recipe?


Anonymous said...

Your picture looks so delicious. I need to stop blog hopping early in the morning. Now I'm wishing I could have pork pot roast for breakfast, as in right now!

Bunny_lover said...

I never met a potato I didn't like! LOL!

HotHeaded said...

I love any and all potatoes. But my hubby's favorite are herb roasted red potatoes. He actually prefers red potatoes over regular ones. But like you said the prices for potatoes is crazy. They have been over $5 for 10 lbs. The red ones are $5 for 3 lbs. We have been eating more rice and noodles instead of potatoes.

Anonymous said...

My first favorite is cheesy potatoes. Of course, it's frozen potatoes-but it's so delicious. My family looks forward to me making it during the holidays.

My 2nd favorite is something my husbabnd makes. He peels and cubes potatoes, then cubes up a green pepper and an onion. Then on a piece of tin foil he places a serving of potatoes, some onions and some green peppers then a blob of butter. Then he folds it up good in the tin foil and cooks it on the top rack of the grill... oh my gosh....I'm getting hungry for it just thinking about it! YUM!

Jennifer said...

So hard to pick, I love oven fries, cumin roasted potatoes and twice baked potatoes (with bacon, cheese and green onions, oh, my!)

Maria said...

I love sweet potato fries and roasted red potatoes with rosemary! YUM!

Carla said...

My favorite potato item would be sweet potato fries. I always got so excited when I used to eat at the dining hall, and they had them once every few weeks.

As for Dorie's cupcakes, yea I know what you mean about the texture. After my first bite, I couldn't decide if the cupcakes were moist or dry. Then I decided to lean towards the moist side because they were more moist than dry.

Unknown said...

Mmm...this looks good! I like roasting potatoes but my family's favorite recipe is shredded potatoes au gratin (I think I've posted it).

Anonymous said...

My favorite potato dish is new or red potatoes mixed with some olive oil and salt, roasted on a bed of rosemary. Great taste and the whole kitchen smells divine...