Fennel, Apple, and Spinach–Stuffed Pork Loin with Molasses-Cider Glaze
Makes 10 to 12 servings
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1 fennel bulb, thinly sliced and chopped
  • 2 Granny Smith apples, cored and finely chopped
  • ½ cup chopped onion
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1¼ cups apple cider, divided
  • 1 (6-ounce) package baby spinach
  • 1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh thyme
  • 2½ teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1 (5-pound) pork loin, trimmed
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ½ cup unsulphured molasses
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  1. Preheat oven to 425°. Place a roasting rack in a roasting pan, and spray rack lightly with cooking spray.
  2. In a large skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add fennel, apples, onion, and garlic; cook, stirring occasionally, until very tender, about 12 minutes. Add 1 cup cider, and bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer until liquid is almost evaporated. Gradually stir in spinach until wilted.
  3. Remove from heat, and stir in bread crumbs, thyme, and ½ teaspoon salt. Let cool for 30 minutes.
  4. Butterfly pork by placing the loin lengthwise on a cutting board, with one short end closest to you. Holding knife parallel to cutting board, make a lengthwise cut along the bottom third of one long side, cutting to within ½ inch of other long side. Open meat as if opening a book. Again holding knife parallel to cutting board, with the blade facing the thicker side, make another lengthwise cut into the thicker side of the loin, cutting to within
  5. ½ inch of opposite side. Again, open meat as if opening a book. Using the flat side of a meat mallet or a rolling pin, flatten any thicker portions of meat until thickness is even throughout (do not flatten any thinner than ½ inch thick). Sprinkle remaining 2 teaspoons salt and pepper onto butterflied pork, and spread apple mixture over pork, leaving a 1-inch border on all sides. Starting at one long side, roll up loin and filling. Tie loin together at 1-inch intervals using butcher’s twine. Place pork on prepared rack.
  6. In a small bowl, stir together molasses, remaining ¼ cup cider, and 2 tablespoons melted butter. Brush one-third of mixture over pork.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350°. Brush pork with one-third of molasses mixture, and bake until a thermometer inserted in thickest portion of loin registers 145°, 30 to 40 minutes, brushing with remaining third of molasses mixture halfway through remaining baking time. Let stand for 15 minutes before slicing.
Recipe by Victoria at https://www.victoriamag.com/fennel-apple-spinach-stuffed-pork-loin-molasses-cider-glaze-recipe/