Friday, 22 April 2016

Roast pork loin with with Austrian apple & horseradish sauce (Apfelkren)

Apfelkren is traditionally served with roast beef, but I find it an equally favourable accompaniment to pork - the horseradish kick works wonderfully when paired with the sharp sweetness of apple sauce.

For the roast pork:
1.2kg Pork loin on the bone, skin on. This piece fed 4 people; it's easy to upscale though - just add 30 minutes extra cooking time for every 500g extra added weight. If you can, ask the butcher to saw a groove across the ribs at the base of the joint; it makes it a lot easier to pull the meat
away from the bone when carving.
Salt and pepper
A few Rosemary sprigs and garlic cloves

For the apple and horseradish sauce:
3 Medium-sized Bramley apples
50g Caster sugar
50g Freshly grated horseradish
Juice of 1 lemon

1 About an hour or so before cooking, take the pork out of the fridge. Crosshatch the skin with a Stanley knife, then rub with salt. Set to one side - the salt will draw moisture out of the skin (which equals better crackling), while the time sat before cooking lets the pork warm to room temperature (which is better for roasting). Now's the time to season the rest of the meat, make small incisions in the flesh and poke in a few garlic cloves and rosemary sprigs.
2 Heat the oven to 240c/220 fan/Gas 9. Stand the meat on a roasting tray with the skin facing up and roast for 20 minutes. Turn the heat down to 190c/170c fan/gas 5 and cook for a further hour, or until the core temperature has reached 160c when checked with a meat thermometer. Rest in a warm spot for 15 minutes before serving; don't cover - you'll spoil the crackling if you do so.
3 Core, peel and roughly chop the apples. Tip into a saucepan with the sugar and a splash of water, then stir on a medium heat until for 10-15 minutes until they have broken down to a near-purée. Take off the heat, cool for 10
minutes then stir in the horseradish and lemon juice.