A Simple Way to Cook Pork

You know how sometimes, especially when you come home from a rough week in graduate school, you just get a hankering for a food you haven’t had in ages? I had that feeling this week with pork. Don’t get me wrong; if YOU were to offer me tenderloin or chops or bacon, I (probably) wouldn’t turn you down. But when I’m paying the grocery bills I like keep my pork desires in check, sticking with the more grad-student friendly chicken and hamburger for everyday meals. Still…this was a rough week. So on my way home Friday afternoon, I picked up two pounds of pork roast.

Now, my original idea was to grill this glorious piece of meat. Why? Well, it’s getting warm here, I have a great sun porch, and I’m Southern so my natural inclination is to grill things anyway. I had worked it all out in my head. I was going to do a slightly Asian twist, making a marinade of soy, ginger, garlic, and honey. The soy sauce would have nicely tenderized and browned the meat (literally), and the honey would help create this caramelization factor. BUT, I got home and my arch nemesis–the paper wasp–had taken up residence on my porch. So…grilling was out. Hence how the following recipe came about.

Maybe it was because I was totally winging this, but this seriously is simple stuff. I will claim that anyone could make this and that it takes skill to mess this up.

Baked Pork Roast

Ingredients:

  • Pork
  • Salt and pepper
  • Minced garlic
  • Olive Oil
  • Balsamic Vinegar (good balsamic–don’t cheap out on this!)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat your oven to 400*.
  2. Take your pork are liberally season it with salt, pepper, and garlic. See below:

    THIS is what a well seasoned piece of pork looks like.
  3. Mix up some balsamic and olive oil. I really like the taste of balsamic, so I like to make my mixture about 40-50% balsamic, 50-60% oil. You want at least 25% balsamic, though–it’s really the only acid you’re adding to the meat, and it’s going to help tenderize things. Drizzle the mixture on top of and around the pork.

    Pork--pre-oven.
  4. Place the pork in your oven. You will cook the pork for 25-30 minutes total, flipping once half-way through.
    Half-way there.

    Completely done.
  5. LET THE PORK REST. I always thought people were crazy for letting their food take “naps” before eating it, but seriously, you want this stuff to rest. At least 15 minutes.
  6. Slice and serve!
    Perfectly cooked and oh-so-juicy.

    Served here with orzo and pine nuts.
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