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This was my first attempt at brining, and I was simply THRILLED how the roast turned out. It was really FULL of flavor, and moist as could be. I adapted this from one I saw made on Food 911, by adding some of my own brine ingredients, and a little different twist on the peaches. This was for my family's Christmas Eve dinner, so I wanted something extra special. The roasted peaches on the side were a terrific compliment to the pork. I know this recipe has a lot of time-consuming steps, but if you're looking for a special dinner for a crowd, this one works very well, and, I think, is worth the time. Prep time does NOT include 6 hour brine time!
- 5 lbs center cut bone-in pork roast (about)
For the brine
- 1 gallon water
- 1 cup kosher salt
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorn
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 5 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 teaspoon allspice berry
- 2 -4 bay leaves
For the roast
- salt & freshly ground black pepper
- olive oil
- 2 -4 sprigs fresh rosemary
- 4 large carrots, peeled
- 1 head garlic, top cut off
- 1 onion, halved
- 4 shallots, halved
For the peaches
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon honey
- 1 tablespoon whoile mustard seeds (optional)
- 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary
- 1 dozen peaches, pitted and halved or 2 (28 ounce) cans peaches, drained (1 cup of syrup reserved)
- olive oil
For the sauce
- 2 cups apple juice
- 1 -3 tablespoon butter
- Place brine ingredients, water through bay leaves, in a large plastic juice container.
- I like to mix the brine ahead of time in a giant plastic container to be sure the sugar and salt dissolve.
- I usually do this the night before, and refrigerate.
- Line a large stockpot or roasting pan with a plastic garbage bag, large enough to fit the roast and the liquid.
- Place pork roast in bag, and pour brine mixture over the meat.
- Tie the bag tightly at the top, so that the entire roast is submerged in the liquid.
- Refrigerate for 6 hours (I flipped it once after 3 hours) Remove pork from the brine, and pat dry with paper towels.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Note about the roast: I find better results if the fat layer is left on.
- Please do not over trim this part, or roast will become too dry.
- Season entire roast generously with salt and pepper.
- Lay the fresh rosemary sprigs over top, and tie the roast with butchers twine, securing the meat a bit more snugly to the bone, which will help it hold its shape and cook evenly.
- Coat roasting pan with olive oil and set over two burners over high heat, until oil is almost smoking.
- Sear the pork, fat side down until it has a nice caramelized color.
- Repeat this for all sides of the roast.
- This should be about 10-15 minutes.
- Add the halved carrots, onion, garlic, shallots and a few more sprigs of rosemary to the pan.
- Place roast in oven, and cook until a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part registers 150 degrees (about 1 1/2-1 hour 45 minutes) For the peaches: If fresh peaches are available, wisk together balsamic vinegar, honey, mustard seeds (if using), rosemary, and ¼ cup olive oil.
- If fresh peaches are not available, used the canned, omit the honey in the marinade.
- You may use a bit of the reserved peach juice to taste instead Place peaches in roasting pan, and pour marinade over them.
- Give them a toss with your hands and place cut side down.
- Roast in oven for about 15 minutes, or until the fresh peaches are soft.
- When pork is finished, remove it to a cutting board, and let rest while you make the sauce.
- Remove aromatics and vegetable from the roasting pan, and set it back up on the stove on medium heat.
- Deglaze the pan with the apple juice, and scrape up the browned pieces stuck to the bottom.
- Let this simmer and reduce by about a third.
- Add salt and pepper to taste, and wisk in butter.
- Remove twine from the roast, carve slices, and serve with sauce and roasted peaches.
Outstanding! Great job, Kosmic Blues. I made a 2.5 pound roast and halved everything else to match. It worked perfectly. I was concerned that the brown sugar in the brine would be tasted in the final product but there was no hint of sweetness in the finished roast. I added potatoes to the other vegetables so we had, more or less, a one pot meal. The fruit and it's glaze are truly inspired, especially with the addition of the mustard seeds. Fresh peaches are not available now so I used fresh pears with wonderful results, as they combined beautifully with the roast. And the apple juice sauce was the perfect final touch. Only other change I made was to eliminate the butter and oil in the fruit and final sauce. They were still deliciously rich. Don't let the length of the recipe deter you. The instructions are very thorough and it's actually quite easy and umcomplicated to make. The roast itself is incredibly flavorful and VERY tender and moist. Ten stars.