(Note: If you are looking for the recipe for Honey Apple Pork Loin, it is at the bottom of this post.)
I have been buying whole boneless pork loin for quite a while now. It is extremely economical and my family loves Honey Apple Pork Loin (recipe below) so buying an entire loin and cutting it into three or four roasts for the freezer is a common occurrence in this house. I thought I was pretty smart, cutting that pork loin into roasts. That is until I happened across this video from FireCooker.com on You Tube. It seems that I had been butchering my pork loins all wrong! Yes, all parts of the pork loin can make tasty roasts, but some parts are more suitable for other cuts of pork than others.
When you look at the loin, you will notice that one end of the loin is smaller than the other. Not only that, the smaller end is fattier. This is considered the Ribeye portion. In the middle is the Roast section, and the larger end – the leaner end – is the Sirloin portion. All of these parts can be used for roast, but can be used for so many other cuts! I had no idea what I was missing out on!
The pork loin on the video was about 7 pounds and was perfectly portioned to be cut into sirloin, ribeye and roast sections. My loin, however, is HUMONGOUS – 12.5 pounds to be exact! So, I had to cut mine into four portions.
I started with the ribeye section of my loin because I wanted to cut some boneless pork chops like the beautiful ones Dr. Barbecue did in the video. I wanted mine a little thinner than his, so using the width of my thumb as a guide, I cut my chops about 3/4″.
I ended up with six pork chops from my sirloin end. Aren’t they pretty?
You’ll notice in the upper right corner of the above picture there was some scrap meat left over. (A better picture below.) When I got to the end, I found that the tip wasn’t firm enough to cut more chops. But I learned that I can cut stew meat from this. So I did. I felt very clever. I’m thinking thick and hearty pork stew….mmmm. I can’t wait to eat that!
The last three sections I left as roasts, although there are lots of other options for cutting the sirloin portion. However, I had Honey Apple Pork Loin on my mind (and on my menu plan!)
I originally found Crock Pot Honey Apple Pork Loin on My Crossfit Paleo Journey. My family LOVES it and it is so easy. Here’s what you need?
2.5 to 3 lbs pork loin
3 apples, sliced
First, cut slits in the pork loin without cutting through.
Drizzle honey into slits.
Place slices from one of the apples into the slits. Put the remaining apple slices in freezer bag. Drizzle honey and apples over the apples.
Sprinkle cinnamon over pork loin. Place pork loin in bag with apples and seal. Freeze. On serving day, place frozen loin and apples in crock pot. Cook on low 6 to 8 hours.
There you have it…five meals from one pork loin. I bought the loin for $1.99/pound, and the apples were from our apple tree in our yard, so the total cost is less than $5 per meal for my family of seven.
We ate the pork chops that night as Oven Fried Pork Chops (which explains why they aren’t vacuumed sealed). My only question is what exactly to do with the stew meat? What do you suggest I make with it? Leave me your ideas in the comment section below, and I just might take your suggestion!