Now pork is quite easily my favorite meat. It’s lean and flavorful. And if you resist the urge to overcook it is juicy and succulent too. Brining the chop and wrapping it in pancetta not only adds additional spice and sweet porky flavor, but it also helps you keep from overcooking the meat. Pancetta Wrapped is a trick to learn.
- 1 bay leaf, broken into several pieces
- 2½ cup room temperature water
- 2 tablespoon sugar
- 2 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1 boneless pork loin chop (1 ½ to 2″ thick about 3/4 lb)
- 8 cipollini or very small white onions, unpeeled
- coarse salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary, plus several sprigs
- 3 ounce pancetta, thinly sliced (bacon is a fine substitute)
- 1 teaspoon unsalted butter, softened
- 1 teaspoon all purpose flour
- 1 cup chicken stock, preferably homemade
In a medium-sized bowl add the bay leaf pieces, water, sugar and salt. Mix well to dissolve sugar and salt. Put the pork loin chop into an appropriately sized a zip-lock bag. Pour the brining liquid into the bag and seal tightly. Removing as much air as possible. Set the bag into a bowl to avoid accidents and refrigerate 2–4 days.
When ready to roast the pork. Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F. Score a small x on the root end of each onion. This will make it peel more easily after it has roasted. Remove the pork from the marinade and dry it well. Rub the oil all over the meat and season it with salt and pepper. Sprinkle the pork with chopped rosemary and minced garlic on both sides. Wrap the pork very carefully with pancetta, overlapping strips slightly. Use toothpicks to secure pancetta, if necessary. Place a rosemary sprig on top; tie pork with kitchen twine, and remove toothpicks.
Place pork in an ovenprook skillet or stovetop friendly baking dish. Scatter onions and rosemary sprigs around pork. Roast in oven, basting occasionally with cooking juices, until it reaches an internal temperature of 140 degrees on an instant-read thermometer, 30 to 35 minutes. Remove from oven. Transfer pork and onions to a platter; cover it loosely to keep warm. Let it rest about 6 minutes before slicing.
Make pan sauce: Add the softened butter and flour to a small bowl. Mix well. Set aside. Place the same skillet or dish you cooked the pork in over medium heat. Add the stock, scraping bottom to loosen browned bits. Bring to a boil; reduce liquid slightly, about 2 minutes. Whisk in butter mixture; cook until thickened. Season with salt and pepper. Slice pork in ½ pieces across the grain, and drizzle with sauce. Slip the skins off the onions and serve them with sliced pork and pan sauce.