Spinach and Herb Stuffed Bacon Wrapped Pork Loin with Baked Potato

This recipe is courtesy of my husband, Troy. We had a pork loin in the freezer and wanted to use that up. Since Troy is a wonderful chef, I left it up to him to come up with what to do with it. I believe the first thing he said was to stuff it and roll it up. I was down for that. I initially wasn’t going to post this because I wasn’t going to be home yet to take pictures, and I didn’t want to bother Troy with it. But guess what, he was awesome enough and took pictures. πŸ™‚ Isn’t he just wonderful?! I may be biased….

This recipe is almost Whole30 approved. I plan on doing an update on my journey and current thoughts as to why I chose to do what I did. Intrigued?! But that’s later. Back to the food because that is ALL that matters.

The food was absolutely amazing, and it hit the spot. It’s very flavorful and you can pick and choose what to include in it. The pork is versatile, which is a great thing. So, don’t feel the need to stick with what I did. Okay?

What you will need for the pork:

  • 2 pound pork loin
  • 2 sprigs of chopped thyme
  • 4 sprigs of rosemary (chop up one sprig)
  • 3 minced cloves of garlic
  • salt
  • pepper
  • 1 tablespoon of dijon mustard
  • 6 pieces of bacon (we like thick cut)
  • 2 handfuls of baby fresh baby spinach (or kale if you have that lying around)
  • meat tenderizer (or a hammer…j/k)
  • butchers twine
  • tin foil

What you will need for the baked potato:

  • 2 russet potatoes
  • salt
  • pepper
  • chopped green onions (or chives)
  • chopped bacon (from the pork when it’s done)
  • cheese (optional)
  • butter (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Clean the pork loin of silverskin (that’s the thin layer of white on top of the meat) and some of the fat.
  3. Butterfly the pork. You will be making 3 incisions. Starting with the loin either vertically or horizontally (whichever way you feel more comfy), you are going to cut it length wise, about 3/4 of the way through. Do not cut all the way through. You will then need to butterfly each of the halves. Once you have the first center cut, open the loin up. Cut each half right down in the middle 3/4 of the way down. Remember not to cut all the way through. It will not be a flat surface. It looks more like there are triangles on each side. Don’t worry about that, you’ll be taking care that in the next step. (If this seemed complicated to follow, I’m sure there are videos online. The way that Troy did it was a lot easier than ways you may find online.)
  4. Take the tenderizer (the side with the spikes) and pound both sides completely. You’re not looking to make the loin bigger, you just want the meat to be tender.
  5. Add salt, pepper, chopped thyme and chopped rosemary, and minced garlic. Lay flat all of the spinach.IMG_3980
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  6. Starting at one end, start rolling it all up.
  7. Next, you’re going to need the butcher’s twine. Cut 4 equal length strings. Long enough to go around the loin. Tie each end of the pork loin tightly. Then, with the remaining 2 strings, tie them around the middle of the loin. Troy did the fancy thing of trussing the pork, but this is made simple. If you are interested in learning how to truss, I’d say Google it. πŸ™‚IMG_7683
  8. Rub mustard all around the pork.
  9. With the 3 sprigs of rosemary, fit them underneath the strings so they stay in place.IMG_6287
  10. Take one piece of bacon, cover one end (so you are covering the opening). While holding the ends of the bacon, take the next piece and place it over the loin and over the ends you’re holding, then tuck it under the loin. Do the same thing with the other end of the loin. The last 2 pieces of bacon will go over the middle.IMG_9539
  11. Take 2 pieces of foil and wrap each around each potato leaving it open on top. Think of it as placing the potato into a comfy basket (without a handle).
  12. Place the bacon wrapped loin into an oven safe corning ware. Do not cover. The foil wrapped potatoes can also go into an oven safe dish.
  13. Bake the pork loin and potatoes for 45-55 minutes. Depending on your oven. The bacon will become crispy on top. Push on the loin when you take it out; it should be relatively firm. The potatoes should be soft in the center. You can use a knife to determine if it is done.IMG_0587
  14. Let the pork rest. After it has rested, peel the bacon off, and cut the strings off. (I stuck the bacon back into the oven on a baking sheet to get them more crispy).
  15. Cut the loin into 1/2 to 3/4 inch slices.
  16. Slice a slit along the top the potatoes. Do not cut the ends or go all the way through. Push on the ends to make it open up and look restaurant style. Caution: it will be very hot. Then use a fork to “fluff” it all up. Top it with your favorite toppings! We used the bacon from the pork, chopped it up, and put it on top.
  17. Plate all the food.
  18. Enjoy!

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YUM! Doesn’t it look delicious?! I’ll admit, I ate it all. And very quickly. It was pretty much like I haven’t eaten in centuries.

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It’s never too late!

I’ve been meaning to post this for like ever. However, that did not happen. Obvs. Life got in the way. I’m sure everyone is familiar with that. I wanted to share everything that happened with my birthday celebrations! I know, you are probably thinking, “Maria, it’s been forever since that happened…”, but stick with me!

Friday night I had some of the girls over for craft night! We all painted planters and two of us made clay coasters. I will not be sharing that part because they did not turn out so hot! You live and learn. But I’ve been SO excited about the planters. I had the idea when I started my new job and sat in my cubicle. I have a shelf in there that just screamed plants. There are no windows where I am, so, plants were a must. But of course, I needed something that would survive without the sun. Succulents and cacti for the win. I’ll be posting a DIY for the planters here soon. I promise. It was a really fun night. We ordered pizza, had some tunes playing, had some drinky drinks, talked…SO MUCH FUN! Here are some scenes:
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Aren’t those some great pictures? It really was such a fun night. I didn’t share any of my pots really since I plan on doing another post. All of the girls did such a wonderful job. Pretty much all of us are artists who will be paid millions one day. One day…

On Saturday I had to take my car in for an oil change. #adultlife. Troy and I then got such after at Panera before heading to Old Navy. Mama needed some new clothes! My sis got me a gift card for there and I really wanted a new outfit to wear for going out. I ended up getting a skirt (or 2) and a top (or 3). Success. Once we got home, I relaxed before taking a shower and getting all pretty. We met my parents for dinner at a Mexican joint. It’s one of my favorite places.

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I got a berry mojito and a chicken chimichanga. Doesn’t it all look DELICIOUS?! I could have that everyday. I then would not feel so great, but you know what I mean. After dinner, we came back to our apartment to hang out before heading out for drinks at Razzles. A local watering hole. My friends met up and we sat outside on the second floor patio. I really hate sitting outside, especially when it’s hot and sunny. But this was covered, and it was cool, so it totally was awesome. I had a handful of shots and drank summer shandy. It was perfect.

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The top picture is my skirt that I got and the bottom picture is of my parents. Aren’t they just adorable?!

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And those are my friends. I absolutely love this collection of pictures. The next day, I had to delete over 100 pictures thanks to one of my friends who shall not be named. πŸ˜‰ I had such a blast though.

On Sunday, I woke up tired. Not hungover. Thankfully. I slept pretty much all morning. It was glorious. Then a friend and I went to see Pitch Perfect 2. Anyone see it? I liked it! However, I didn’t recognize some of the songs. I think that means I’m old – that’s what my friend said at least. πŸ™‚ We had popcorn, pop, and candy. No one annoyed me in the theater so that’s always a huge plus. It was a successful movie trip.

That was pretty it for my birthday outings. The rest of that Sunday was spent relaxing and waiting for Game of Thrones. There it is! Now you all can stop wondering what I ended up doing to celebrate. πŸ˜‰