Bacon Wrapped Pork Loin
For brining pork
8 cups water
1/3 cup kosher salt
2 tablespoons maple syrup (Grade B or amber)
1/2 teaspoon crushed black peppercorns
2 sprigs fresh sage
1 large garlic clove, smashed
1 Turkish or 1/2 California bay leaf
1 (4- to 4 1/2-lb) boneless pork loin roast, trimmed
For roasting pork
3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage
3 tablespoons maple syrup (optional ) (can use sugar free)
16 bacon slices (about 1 lb)
1 tablespoon cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
1 teaspoon water
Combine all brining ingredients except pork loin in a 3- to 4-quart saucepan and heat over high heat, stirring, until salt is dissolved. Pour brine into a deep 4- to 5-quart pot; cool to room temperature.
Add pork to brine, making sure it is completely covered by brine, and marinate, covered and chilled, 8 to 24 hours is best, but less time is okay if you're in a hurry.
Step 1: Put oven rack in middle position and preheat oven to 350°F.
Step 2: Prep Ingredients: chop garlic and sage, measure maple syrup, cider vinegar, cornstarch and water.
Step 3: Pat pork dry (discard brine) and remove any strings, then transfer to a roasting pan. Stir together garlic, sage, and 1 tablespoon syrup in a small bowl and rub all over pork.
Step 4: Make a basket-weave of bacon slices on a sheet of plastic wrap or a silicone pad. Next, lay your pork loin on the bacon and pull up the sides of the plastic wrap so your basket weave stays in place while you flip the pork loin over. Remove the plastic wrap and tuck the ends of your bacon underneath loin.
Step 5: Roast pork until thermometer registers 140°F, about 1 1/4 hours.
Step 6: Stir together 1 tablespoon syrup and vinegar until combined. Brush vinegar mixture over bacon slices and continue to roast pork until thermometer registers 150°F, about 10 minutes more.
Step 7: Remove from oven and let stand in pan 15 minutes before transferring to your cutting board with a lip to collect the juices. Slice into 2 inch slices while keeping bacon intact around each piece. Pour some of the juices over the sliced roast (or you can use it to make a simple pan sauce). Enjoy!