There is nothing better than coming into the kitchen at the end of a long work day and smelling dinner ready in the crock-pot! This Fall I’m endeavouring to use my crock-pot more to save time and effort in my already busy days. I love the simplicity of this recipe, and how quickly you can pop everything into the crock-pot and walk away. Perfect for these busy (and chilly) October days.
The following pork loin roast recipe was something I concocted about a month ago, and it’s been such a big hit that I’ve already made it a second time. I hope you and your family will enjoy it too!
Our local Food Fare butcher carries Manitoba-raised pork products that they source from Country Meats in Blumnort, Manitoba (SE of Winnipeg). The jalapeños used were from my own garden, and the apples for this recipe came from my neighbour’s tree. So this is a truly Made in Manitoba recipe!
The first time around this recipe was actually a “fridge-cleaner” for us. The tomato juice was leftover from some canned diced tomatoes that I drained and used a couple days before to make my Super Easy Salsa. In the past, I would drain the juice off the tomatoes, and just let it flow down the drain. Now I save it, and freeze it, for future uses like this crock-pot delight. The tomato juice is an easy, and very flavourful addition to any stew or crock-pot recipe where you would otherwise use a broth.
Also use those wrinkled, old apples in your fridge for this recipe, as well as any other vegetable that you have in your crisper that are passed their prime — the liquid and steam in the crock-pot will rehydrate them nicely.
The tradition of enjoying pork roasts goes back a long ways in my family. It’s probably one of our top choices for creating a great family meal to sit down and share. Recently, when my Dad was visiting, I remade this recipe as I knew he’d love it too. It was a big hit with the boys after they finished a busy day around the yard doing chores.
I have never been a big fan of using my crock-pot until I learned the ultimate secret of how to produce great meat via the crock-pot…
You simply need to sear the protein first for a few minutes on your cooktop/ grill and then add it to the mix in the crock-pot, but don’t submerse it. Then the meat is guaranteed to come out nice and brown, as if you cooked it in the oven. Plus it tends to hold together better as the seared edges protect the meat by keeping it moist, and it keeps your roast from falling apart into pulling pork.
As we are only a family of two, I used only two of each of the ingredients below, but if you’re a larger family, or have a larger than average crock-pot, then simply scale up as required on all ingredients.
ANNA’S TIP: The leftovers (excluding the pork roast) in their liquid also make a great soup for Day Two. Puree and strain the leftover veg and liquid, and add a ½ cup of cream while warming the mixture over the stove. If you’re going to make the Day Two Soup, I highly recommend pureeing the leftovers right after you eat dinner while your leftovers are still slightly warm — it just works better.
One 3lb. pork loin roast
2 tbsp. Greek seasoning mix
2 tbsp. Olive oil
2 to 4 sweet potatoes, peeled and chunky cut
2 to 4 apples, any variety, cored and quartered (not peeled)
1 to 2 jalapeño peppers, seeded and sliced (optional)
2 to 4 cups of tomato juice
1. Liberally coat your roast with olive oil, or whatever oil you have on hand.
2. Season all sides of your pork roast with the Greek seasoning mix — I used the Club House brand, but any spice blend would do in a pinch.
3. Pre-heat your skillet or cast-iron frying pan on a high setting with 2 tablespoons of olive oil until squiggles appear.
A great way to test the oil’s readiness is to put the handle end of a wooden spoon into the oil. If the oil bubbles on the edges of the handle, then it’s ready for the roast.
4. Sear each side of the pork roast for 2 minutes (top, bottom, right and left sides) or until golden brown – don’t forget to do the ends too because those will be worth fighting over!
5. Place the sweet potatoes, apples and jalapeños into the crock-pot, pour in your tomato juice and place the seared pork roast on top of the veggies.
6. Cook in the crock-pot on the high setting for 2.5 to 3 hours.
7. Check the pork’s temperature with a good quality meat thermometer — it should be 145*F when done.
8. Remove the roast from the crock-pot, and let the roast rest for 3 to 5 minutes before slicing.
9. Spoon the veggies into a shallow individual bowl like you use for pasta, and top with sliced meat. A thick slice of buttered bread or a biscuit is a nice touch too!
If you try this recipe at home, please come back to the blog and let me know what you thought of my version of Manitoba Pork Roast and Root Vegetables.