Last summer I had visions of stuffing a pork loin with peaches. I never got around to it, and the idea faded with the fruit.
Last night I was searching for a dinner that would mark the end of summer (Labor Day being the “official” end of the season and all). I’d thawed a pork roast with the idea of grilling, but we’d done barbecue earlier in the week. Plus, I could hear thunder in the distance and figured rain was imminent.
My roast suddenly seemed bland. Tired. A little ho-hum.
As I sat mulling ideas, the boys stomped into the kitchen, demanding to know when dinner would be ready.
“I don’t know,” I said.
“What are we having?” they asked.
“I’m not sure,” I said.
“Doh!” spewed the younger one. “Can I at least have a peach?”
Of course you can, I thought. You can have a peach with your meat!
And that was how I ended up stuffing a pork roast with peaches. In a touch over an hour, we sat down to a rosy roast that was slightly sweet (the peaches), slightly earthy (onions and sage) and completely unexpected.
“You have to make this again,” the husband said as he reached for a second slice.
But only as long as the peaches last!
Peach-Stuffed Pork Loin
Choose peaches that are just slightly soft for this dish. Too ripe, and they’ll turn to jam.
- 1 2 1/2- to 3-pound pork loin roast
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 peach, peeled and diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- Zest from 1 lemon
- 4 sage leaves, minced
- 3 tablespoons fresh basil, minced
- 2 teaspoons oregano, minced
- 1 cup freshly made bread crumbs
Preheat your oven to 375 degrees. Spray a roasting pan and rack with cooking spray and set aside.
Add the garlic, lemon zest and herbs and saute an additional minute. Remove from the heat, then add the bread crumbs and toss until they’re moist. Set the saute pan aside.
Set the pork loin on a cutting board. Using a boning knife, cut it down the center and open it up like a book. Be sure you don’t cut all the way through it … you want to leave about 3/4 of an inch intact at the bottom:
Using your knife, make identical cuts lengthwise along each half, and open them up:
Place a sheet of waxed paper over the meat and — using a meat mallet — pound the roast to an even thickness. Remove the waxed paper, and season the meat with salt and pepper. Spoon the onion and peach mixture over it, leaving a 1/2- to 1-inch border. Roll the meat up around the filling, and secure it with butcher’s twine, tied at 1-inch intervals:
Place any extra filling in a small greased dish, and set aside.
Rub the roast with olive oil, salt and pepper, then place it on your roasting pan rack. Roast for 1 hour and 5 minutes, or until the meat’s internal temperature measures 140 degrees on an instant-read thermometer.
Remove the roast from the oven and set aside. Place the dish of extra filling in the oven and heat for 5 to 10 minutes.
When it’s hot, take the filling out of the oven and turn it out onto a platter. Place the roast over the extra filling. Remove the twine, then slice in inch-thick pieces. This serves 4 hungry people.