Entrees

Sauerkraut Pork Roast, Bonus Rice, and Asparagus

Jar of sauerkraut that inspired this recipe for sauerkraut pork roast
The infamous jar that inspired this sauerkraut pork roast

I had some sauerkraut left over from another recipe and was unsure what to do with it. I hate wasting food, so I went to the cybersphere and asked for suggestions. I got lots of excellent responses, one of which was to roast pork steaks covered with sauerkraut. Thus, I was inspired to make this sauerkraut pork roast.

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SKIP TO RECIPE

Start your zesty sauerkraut pork roast

I can’t get over the tremendous flavor the zesty sauerkraut imposes on what I normally think of as a flavorless meat. I’ve never been much of a fan of pork (exception: bacon) because it so often gets overcooked out of fear of bacteria. One time, my sister cooked pork chops with garlic and butter, and that was the last time I had ever enjoyed pork. Until now.

Make sure you salt and sear the pork roast before popping it into the oven. This approach makes for a crispy crust that holds in the juices and prevents the roast from drying out. Then all you do is load on the sauerkraut and pop the sauerkraut pork roast in the oven for an hour.

Make your bonus rice

While the pork cooks, start your bonus rice. Okay, I call it bonus rice because it is an extra recipe at the end of my book, Just Recipes, hence the name, bonus rice. I first learned how to make rice this way back in grad school when a good friend taught me the Mexican way of cooking rice. Growing up in Mexico City, she had never heard of just rinsing and throwing rice right into the boiling water. Her way turned out to be a bit more involved, but the rice came out so much more flavorful and textured. I derived my recipe from what I could remember of her instructions, and I think it’s a close rendition.

SKIP TO RECIPE

To make bonus rice, get the oil good and hot, and then stir in the rice. I was told to stir gently so as not to break the grains, but I’m not that patient. Do as you see fit. It will still taste great next to your sauerkraut pork roast, or try it with my recipe for sausages, mushrooms, and kale! As you stir, pay attention to the color of the rice. The grains will first start to turn white and then they’ll brown up pretty quickly after that. You’ll know when to add the water when most of the grains are brown and the rice is pleasantly aromatic. The water will wonderfully and satisfyingly sizzle as it goes into the pan, so don’t be alarmed! Proceed to boil, and then cover and simmer the rice as usual.

I heart asparagus

Asparagus tastes so good and is so easy to cook. It’s ready in a jiffy and has so many health benefits (in spite of the way it makes your, ahem, pee smell). The shorter the amount of time you blanch asparagus or most veggies anyway, the more you get access to essential nutrients. For asparagus, those nutrients include vitamin K, folate, vitamin C, beta-carotene, vitamin E, zinc, manganese, and selenium. You can also chop up the woody ends that most people discard and cook them at the bottom of a quiche.

I hope you enjoy this sauerkraut pork roast with bonus rice and asparagus as much as I (to my surprise) did!

SKIP TO RECIPE

Meal prep options

bonus rice

Just a note

Zesty sauerkraut spices up this pork roast.

Make this …

Vegetarian: Forego the pork roast, sauté the sauerkraut with onion and garlic, and mix it into the rice.
Paleo: It already is!
Gluten-free: It already is!
Non-dairy: It already is!


Shopping list

Produce

2 lb. asparagus

Meat

1.5 lb. pork roast

Non-perishables

12 oz sauerkraut
kosher salt
olive oil
brown rice

Tools

kitchen knife
cutting board
large oven-safe skillet
heat-proof tongs
foil
large lidded skillet
medium lidded pot
wooden spoon


Sauerkraut Pork Roast, Bonus Rice, and Asparagus

Serves: 4
Total time: 1 hour 20 minutes

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Ingredients and preparation

Sauerkraut pork roast

2 cups sauerkraut
1.5 lb pork roast
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tbsp olive oil

Bonus rice

1 1/2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup brown rice
dash of salt
2 cups water

Asparagus

2 lb. asparagus: Snap off woody ends

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Trim any excess fat from the pork roast as preferred. Salt both sides. Heat the olive oil in the skillet on high until smoking. Add the pork roast and let sear for about 3 minutes on each side.
  2. Turn off the heat, and load the sauerkraut on top of the pork and all around the sides. Cover the skillet with foil (or use an oven-safe lid if you have one), and roast in the oven for an hour or until a meat thermometer reads 145°F. Remove from the oven and let rest covered for about 5 minutes.
  3. While the pork is roasting, heat the olive oil on high in the medium lidded pot until hot. Turn the heat down a bit, and add the rice. With the wooden spoon, gently stir the rice for even frying and to prevent it from burning. Fry until most grains are browned.
  4. Stir in the salt, and then add the water (it will sizzle loudly). Bring to a boil, turn down the heat, cover, and simmer for 25–30 minutes or until all the water has been absorbed.
  5. For the asparagus, in the large skillet, boil 2 cups of water, and then spread the asparagus evenly in the skillet. Lower the heat and simmer for 3 minutes or until the asparagus is crisp tender.
  6. Slice the pork roast and serve on top of the sauerkraut with the rice and asparagus on the side.

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