By Eva Kosmas Flores
Fall has arrived, friends! And there’s no better way to enjoy it than with hearty comfort food. My favorite protein for fall is definitely pork, it just pairs so incredibly well with autumnal flavors like nuts, apples, and maple. Here, the pork roast is coated with salt and maple syrup and allowed to rest overnight in the fridge to tenderize it slightly and add a rich savory-sweet element to the exterior. Then it’s coated with a crushed hazelnut mixture and roasted in the oven until its internal temperature just reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit. You want to really keep a close eye on this, as *not* over-cooking the pork is key to a moist, juicy, and flavorful roast that will cut well and taste great. I recommend using an oven-safe thermometer embedded into the roast as it cooks so that you have a very accurate idea of the temperature situation going on inside the roast
Ingredients for Encrusted Pork
1 (2 1/2 – 3 pound) pork sirloin tip roast
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
3/4 cup chopped hazelnuts
The night before you plan on roasting the pork, pat the roast dry with a paper towel, then rub it down with 1 teaspoon of the salt and 2 tablespoons of the maple syrup. Wrap it in plastic wrap and keep refrigerated overnight.
The next day, remove the roast from the refrigerator and allow it to rest at room temperature for 40 minutes. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Pat the roast down with a paper towel again, then rub the roast with the olive oil, black pepper, and remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt and 2 tablespoons maple syrup. Pat the hazelnuts onto all exposed areas of the roast to get them to adhere to the sticky coating.
Transfer the roast to a roasting pan lined with tin foil and roast in the oven for 30 minutes, then bring the temperature down to 225 degrees Fahrenheit and roast for another 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until the internal temperature of the meat reaches 145 degrees Fahrenheit. Cooking time will vary depending on the weight of the meat.
Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 30 minutes before carving and serving.