Bacon? Yeah? The maple kind? Ahhhhh! Tell me you have all seen the talking dog YouTube video. If not, go find it now because it will make you laugh and smile. At my house we all love bacon. Even my daughter that is a vegetarian has to get her fix of that flavor so she eats “facon.” It’s not bad but if I have the choice I’m going whole hog if you get my drift.
So a few weeks ago I decided to do a date night at home for the hubby. Fridays are really busy at work for him so he loves to come home and just relax. I figured cooking on the Big Green Egg while floating in the pool was just the ticket for a fun evening. I found this recipe on the Saveur website and thought it might be worth a try..While your husband or guests float or hang out here is what you need to do to prepare this moist and delicious pork loin. Start by sautéing shallots or onions with garlic. Add some spinach and sun dried tomatoes which have been chopped.
Make sure the spinach mixture is squeezed dry. Add some crumbled feta cheese. I buy the block and crumble it myself. I just think it tastes better. I used about half a block for this recipe. Next, using a sharp knife, cut across the middle of the loin approximately 3/4 of the way through and lay it open. Season the meat with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. You will stuff the pork with the spinach mixture, wrap it in bacon and tie that baby up!
Now go get your Big Green Egg ready. What? No Big Green Egg? Shame on you! You are really missing out. Those eggs are great and really hold a steadfast temperature. However, I do love a Weber grill. Nothing like a good ole Weber Kettle, at least that’s what we always called them growing up. None the less, fire up your grill and get it hot. Soak some wood chips. I think we used apple chips. Pick a flavor to go with pork. Listen, you’ve got bacon so it’s not gonna matter that much. Seriously, aren’t we all just looking forward to snagging a piece of that perfectly crisped grilled bacon as soon as it comes off the grill? Yeah, that’s what I thought. Now hurry up and get your grill on.
Bacon Wrapped Pork Loin, adapted from Saveur
Here’s what you will need:
2 lb. boneless pork loin
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2-3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tsp. crushed red chile flakes
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 shallots, finely chopped
8 cups baby spinach
3 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
12 oz. sliced bacon
*I added some chopped sun dried tomatoes (1/3 cup) to the stuffing mixture. Eyeball the amount to your taste.
1. Heat skillet over medium high heat and sauté shallots until slightly translucent. Add garlic until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add spinach in a huge pile. Sauté until spinach wilts down.
2. Remove spinach mixture from heat and allow to cool. Once cool enough to handle, remove excess moisture from spinach. Add feta cheese, sun dried tomatoes and mix thoroughly.
3. Cut pork loin in half 3/4 of the way through, lay open and season with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.
4. Stuff with spinach mixture. Wrap with bacon and tie with kitchen string to hold it all together. I did this at intervals all across the entire length of the loin.
5. Preheat a charcoal grill. Soak some wood chips for about 30 minutes. Once coals are hot, add chips and allow the fire to burn clean.
6. Regulate grill until temperature is a steady 375 degrees. Cook pork for approximately one hour or until internal meat temperature registers 15o degrees.
7. Remove from grill and tent loosely with foil for 10-15 minutes. Slice and serve.