Was busy with work this week, which kept me away from the Egg. But I had an interesting cook to look forward to on the weekend. I watch a video podcast called Cooking Outdoors and a recent episode featured a stuffed pork loin and veggies cooked in a cedar box ("boat"). The recipe was a prize winning Dutch oven recipe that the Cooking Outdoors show adapted to cook in a cedar tray. This looked very interesting and I like doing different things as much as possible. I took advantage of my new second large to bake some Buttermilk Biscuits
from the BGE Cookbook and grill some green beans.
To cut to the chase, the results were mostly positive but there were a few glitches too. The biscuits were my best ever. My father-in-law gave me some tips for tweaking the dough recipe for the Buttermilk Biscuits and these were my best ever. The stuffed pork loin was excellent, although it took 30 minutes more than the recipe called for. People are still talking about the pork a day later. Two weird things though. The first was I was out at the grill the whole time and unless I put my nose near the chimney, I didn't smell much cedar smoke. The finished pork loin had a smoke ring and a definite cedar smoked flavor. Odd. The second oddity was although the roast took an extra 30 minutes, the carrots were still not cooked. Next time I will parboil the carrots. The last item was the green beans. The extra 30 minutes the pork loin took marked the difference between grilling the green beans in dusk and total darkness. I was using a new Weber grill tray. I'd tried buying a BGE spring loaded grilling tray, but no one had it in stock. This Weber unit for their kettle grill actually looked like a better solution. Instead of the half moon shape of the BGE tray, this was an 18" x 10" rectangle with rounded corners. This shape holds far more than the half moon shape of the BGE units. That was the good news. The bad news is when I was pulling the grilling tray off the Egg, I somehow managed to release the latch and the tray opened up and spilled half of the green beans out. Most of them fell through the s/s grate onto the coals. I have no idea what I did to open the latch, I was having trouble seeing. Need some lights for the grill gazebo. The surviving green beans were pretty good, better than any indoor cooked green beans, but I've made better grilled green bean recipes. OK onto the pix.
During the week I picked up some cedar grilling planks & built the cedar boat. It was 15 3/4" x 6 1/2" x 3" high.
Thanks to some tweaks to the dough recipe from my FIL, these were the best Buttermilk Biscuits I've made.
The veggies to go with the pork loin were red & white new potatoes, carrots & yellow onions. The scale was for weighing out the potatoes to get one pound of each.
The veggies are all chopped up. Since I needed to be out at the Egg the whole time while grilling with the cedar boat, I had to do all the prep ahead of time instead of as needed during the various stages of the cook.
The stuffing for the pork loin used chopped dried apricots and cranberry, honey & ground ginger.
The crumb topping used: Bread crumbs, table salt, pepper, onion salt, oregano, garlic salt, ground parsley, vegetable shortening, grated parmesan cheese, all purpose flour & sugar.
The finished crumb topping with the vegetable shortening cut in. It took a little bit of time to get the shortening mixed in.
The egg was stabilized at 375 grate temp which was within 20 degrees plus or minus of the dome temp throughout the cook. I was using the plate setter legs up with the s/s grill grate. I had a drip pan on the plate setter set on 1/2" plumbing T shims. This time I got the probe over the plate setter instead of over the gaps. The readings were sane this time. The cedar boat is on the Egg sterilizing. It was heated until it began to pop.
Although i'd prepped them earlier, I didn't mix the stuffing ingredients until it was time to put them in the pork loin.
The 4 pound center cut pork loin roast has been butterflied.
The stuffing and some of the crumb topping has been applied to the pork loin. I held back 1" from each side, 1" from the leading edge & 2" from the trailing edge so the stuffing won't ooze out when I roll and tie the roast.
The roast is wrapped & tied.
The cedar plank has been allowed to cool & the inside has been rubbed with vegetable shortening. This will help the plank be non-stick and it will also act like a caulk to seal the seams.
The pork loin was rubbed with olive oil and had the crumb topping applied to the outside. It is in the cedar boat and is about to go on the Egg which is stabilized at 375 degrees.
The pork roast is on the Egg & I've inserted a food probe. The roast will cook to 95 degrees and then the veggies will be added.
The recipe from Cooking Outdoors also gave me a heads up to a neat new item to add to my grill arsenal. I always stay out at the grill when cooking on cedar planks because you are always on the edge of going from smoldering to burning. In addition to my usual squirt bottle, I picked up a small fire extinguisher that was shown on the video podcast: The First Alert Tundra. It couldn't be simpler. Remove the clear plastic cap, stand back 3-4 feet & push the button to discharge. No pins, levers or anything else. It is just like using an aerosol spray bottle.
The roast is at 95 degrees internal. It is off the Egg and in the Kitchen where I'm adding the veggies. Up until now the roast was right on schedule. It took it 45 minutes to reach 95 degrees. I expected another 45 minutes to reach its target temp of 145 degrees.
The cedar boat with the pork loin and the veggies are back on the Egg.
I had the green beans ready to go out to the Egg as the pork loin was finishing. The green beans used a paste made from garlic, cumin & red pepper flakes.
Here is a closeup of the paste for the green beans.
The green beans get tossed with the paste.
The green beans are on the second Egg. You can see the new Weber grill tray. I like it's 18"x10" rectangule with rounded corners shape far better than the half moon shape of the BGE Eggcessories. A rectangle wastes less space than a half moon shape for most foods.
The roast took far longer to finish than I expected. It took an extra 30 minutes to hit 145 degrees internal. I am not sure if it was all of the veggies or mopping it every 10 minutes or what. I quickly reduced the mopping to 20 minutes to lessen the impact of cold air being let in every mop. I figured I was going to lose less moisture with the Egg anyway, so mopping was less necessary.
This was not a good thing. When I went to pull the grill tray off the Egg, I somehow managed to release the clip holding the two halves of the grill tray together. This dumped about half of the beans onto the coals. ARRRRGGGHHHH. It was pitch black when I did this so I couldn't see how I did this.
The pork loin is being sliced. It was extremely moist & had a nice little smoke ring. This was odd to me because I wasn't aware of too much cedar smoke smell while grilling.
Time to eat (finally). The pork loin was well worth the wait.
The pork loin was amazing, everyone was raving about it from their first bite. The veggies were very good with the exceptions of the carrots which were still not cooked through despite an extra 30 minutes on the Egg. A quick zap in the microwave took care of that.
These were my best Buttermilk Biscuits yet.
All in all a fun day on the Eggs and an unusual dish you don't see every day in the week.