4.5
2 ratings

Holiday Roast Pork With Honeycrisp Apples

With wine and onion jam recipe
Bill Hogan, Chicago Tribune

This roast pork with Honeycrisp apples is sure to be the star of any holiday table and is complemented perfectly by the sweet-tart onion jam, which is cooked with balsamic vinegar and red wine.

Ready in
10 h 15 m
45 m
(prepare time)
1 h 30 m
(cook time)
8
Servings

Notes

Total time incorporates brining. 

Ingredients

For the red wine and rosemary brine

  • 1/3 Cup each: coarse (kosher) salt, sugar
  • 2/3 Cups dry red wine
  • 1/3 Cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon juniper berries, optional (or 2-4 bay leaves)
  • 1 Tablespoon dried rosemary
  • 1 Teaspoon thyme
  • 1/2 Teaspoon crushed black pepper
  • 5-6 Pounds bone-in pork loin roast, about 8 bones, chine bone removed, rib bones frenched

For roasting the pork

  • 6 large (2 pounds total) Honeycrisp apples, peeled, quartered, cored
  • 1 Pound small parsnips, peeled, halved lengthwise
  • 6-8 cloves garlic
  • 1/4 Cup plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 Teaspoons thyme
  • 1 Teaspoon each: sage, table salt

For the pan gravy

  • 1/2 Cup red wine
  • 1 Cup chicken broth
  • 1 Tablespoon arrowroot (or tapioca starch or cornstarch) dissolved in 1/4 cup water
  • Fresh herbs for garnish

For the red wine and onion jam

  • 1 1/2 Pound (3 large) sweet onions
  • 1 Pound (2 large) red onions
  • 1/2 Cup sugar
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 Teaspoon salt
  • 1/3 Cup dry red wine
  • 2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon balsamic glaze, optional
  • 1/4 Teaspoon each, very finely chopped: fresh rosemary, fresh thyme
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Directions

For the red wine and rosemary brine

Dissolve coarse salt and sugar in 2 cups very hot water in a non-aluminum container large enough to hold the pork. Add red wine, vinegar, juniper berries, rosemary, thyme and the pepper. Add the pork; pour in enough cold water to cover the pork by about 1 inch, usually 2 to 2 1/2 quarts. Refrigerate the pork, covered, for at least 8 hours or up to a day.

For roasting the pork

To roast the pork, heat oven to 400 degrees. Cut apples into 1-inch-thick wedges. Cut parsnips into 1/2-inch-thick slices. Put both in the bottom of a large roasting pan. Add garlic, 1/4 cup oil, 1 teaspoon thyme and half of the sage. Toss well to mix everything with the oil and herbs. Arrange the apple mixture around the edges of the roasting pan.

Remove pork from brine, discarding brine. Place pork in the center of the pan. Drizzle pork with remaining 1 tablespoon oil; sprinkle with remaining 1 teaspoon thyme and 1/2 teaspoon sage. Sprinkle with the salt. Roast pork, turning pan occasionally and basting meat and apples with accumulating pan juices, until a meat thermometer registers 145 to 150 degrees, 60-75 minutes.

Remove pork to a cutting board; cover loosely with foil. (Temperature will rise about 10 degrees.) Use a slotted spoon to transfer apple mixture to a serving bowl. Keep warm.

For the pan gravy

Pour wine into the roasting pan; boil hard on the stovetop while scraping up any browned bits. Whisk in broth and then the dissolved arrowroot. Cook, whisking constantly until it's smooth and thickened. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Serve pork by slicing between the bones into chops. Pass the pan gravy and apples. Garnish plates with fresh herbs. Pass the red wine and onion jam.

For the red wine and onion jam

Cut onions in half. Cut each half into half-inch thick wedges. Put into a 4-quart heavy-bottomed saucepan. Add sugar, oil and salt. Cook, stirring often, over medium heat until softened, about 20 minutes.

Add red wine and balsamic vinegar. Continue to boil gently, about 10 minutes. Then increase the heat to medium and cook, stirring, until thickened and onions are glistening, about 10 minutes. Watch and stir often so mixture doesn't burn. Season with balsamic glaze, rosemary, thyme and pepper to taste. Serve warm.