roast pork loin and oreos

We're well in to summer here in AZ as the children have been out of school for 10 days.  Besides the same ole "Mom will you take me and my friends to Sun Splash and pay for everyone?"  My next favorite question is "What do we have to eat around here?" 

We sit down for dinner together each night and in the summer we manage to fill the empty seats at our table.  I try to shop each week with a menu in mind.  Not because I'm super organized, but because I'd rather get a root canal then go to the grocery store.

Last week I made this DELICIOUS roast pork loin with apples.  I paired it with a salad from our summer garden, baked potatoes, and homemade oreos for dessert.  The best part about this dinner- it's quick and easy, nutritious, and it's fit for company of any kind. 

Roast Pork Loin

5 lb. boneless center cut pork loin, trimmed and tied
4 T vegetable oil
1 large onion, sliced thick
5 large carrots, sliced thick
4 fuji apples, cored and cut into 8 slices
4 cloves garlic, smashed
2 stalks celery, sliced thick
6 sprigs fresh thyme
6 sprigs fresh rosemary
6 T butter or olive oil
4 T apple cider vinegar
2 C apple cider
4 T whole grain mustard

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  In a dutch oven skillet, heat vegetable oil on high heat.  Season the pork loin generously with s & p.  Sear the meat until golden brown on all sides.  Transfer the meat to a plate and set aside. 

Add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic, herbs, and butter.  Stir until the vegetables are browned (about 8 min).
Stir in the apple slices, then push the mixture to the sides and set the pork loin in the middle of the skillet along with any juices from the plate.

Place the skillet in the oven and roast the loin until the meat registers 140-150 degrees (about 1 hr).  Transfer the pork to a cutting board and cover it loosely with foil while you make the sauce. Place the apples and vegetables on a serving platter and set aside.  Return the skillet to a high heat and add the vinegar, scraping the bottom with a wood spoon.  Reduce by half and then add the cider.  Reduce by half again.  Pull the skillet from the heat and whisk in the mustard.  Add 2 T cold butter and s & p to taste.

Serve sliced pork with vegetables and gravy.  Do not fret if you don't own a dutch oven skillet.  Simply cook the roast and vegetables in a pan and transfer it all to a baking dish.  I think next time I'm going to cook it out on the grill so my home stays cool in these rising temperatures!

Dessert: Homemade Oreos from the kitchen of {Elizabeth Banks}

2 pkg devils food cake mix
1 1/3 C butter, softened
4 eggs

Mix together with an electric mixer.  Shape dough into quarter sized balls.  Bake at 350 for 8 minutes. 

Butter -cream frosting:

1 lb. powdered sugar
1 cube butter
1 tsp vanilla
1 to 3 T milk

Frost cookie with butter-cream frosting and top with another cookie. 

Me and Jilly are trying to find ourselves in a cool, preferably tropical location for the duration of the AZ summer.  If you would like some company for the next few months, please send us your address!  We warm up to people really quickly and we promise to obey all the house rules.  Jilly loves to bake and I give a mean foot rub. 

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