Love this crock pot dish.
Because it is VERY necessary to brown the pork before you put it in the crock pot, I do the cooking the night before and then put the whole crock pot, liquid and all, into the fridge overnight. Right before I leave in the morning I will take it out of the fridge and start the crock pot.
I really like using pork loin because it is a much leaner cut of meat and you get a delicious, juicy sauce with no layer of fat sitting on top! The gravy that came out of this was so flavorful and delicious!
I roasted some veggies to pair with the pork, but feel free to toss some carrots and Yukon gold potatoes into the crock pot around the pork for a perfect side dish to this easy and healthy weeknight meal! I actually thought of doing that after I made this and was really dissapointed I didn’t. Next time. And yes, there will be a next time.
Serves: 4 – 6
Prep time: 15 min
Cook time: 8hrs
1 package (about 2 – 3lb) pork loin – there should be two loins in each package
2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ground ginger
2 tsp onion powder
2 tsp of fresh rosemary or thyme (I used Rosemary)
1 TB kosher salt (I know it seems like a lot but pork loin can be very under seasoned)
1 tsp freshly ground pepper
2 TB olive oil
2 TB soy sauce
2 cups chicken broth
2 TB freshly squeezed lemon juice – about the juice of one lemon
For thickening the sauce:
3 TB flour
2 TB, unsalted, good quality butter
In a small bowl, add the garlic powder, ground ginger, onion powder, Rosemary, salt and pepper.
Mix them together to create an epic flavor bomb.
Unwrap the pork loin and separate the two loins. HINT: I unwrap everything inside a plastic bag so that the pork juices don’t get everywhere and the mess stays contained.
As non-violently as possible, stab the pork loins all over so that the spice mixture can really penetrate the pork.
Massage the spice mixture into the two pork loins making sure that the spices really get in to every nook and cranny.
Using your stove-top safe crock pot insert, or a dutch oven, heat the oil.
Place the pork in the hot oil and allow it to brown for 2 – 3 minutes on each side. This is a REALLY necessary step. If you skip this, you will be essentially be steaming the pork in the crock pot and it will turn out grey and VERY bland.
Make sure you get all sides nice and brown. Add more oil if necessary.
Oh hello flavor-town. Come to mamma.
While your pork is browning, measure out the two cups of chicken stock.
To the same measuring cup, add the soy sauce…
and the lemon juice…
Once the pork is brown and crispy on all sides, put them into the slow cooker and carefully pour the liquid around the sides of the pork. (This is the time to add your carrots and potatoes if you choose to).
Set your crock pot on low for 8 hours.
When you get home, try not to pass out from the delicious aroma wafting through your home.
Remove the pork loins to a plate.
Then, shred those puppies.
Ok so the next step is optional. You could very easily just put the shredded pork back in the juices, mix together and serve. However, it’s worth taking th extra step to thicken the liquid so it’s more of a gravy. It makes it so much more luxurious.
Many recipes call for using corn starch to thicken gravy, but I won’t use it. Call me crazy, but I just don’t trust corn starch. I prefer to use flour.
There are two ways to do this:
THE FIRST WAY: In a small bowl you can add the 3 TB of flour with 2 TB of water and whisk them together to make a “slurry” like this…
Pour the juices into a saucepan set over medium heat. Add the slurry and whisk until the mixture thickens. This way tends to be time consuming and I never really get the consistency I’m looking for.
THE SECOND (and better) WAY: In a small saucepan over medium heat, melt the butter. Once the butter is melted, whisk in the flour.
Whisk the flour and butter mixture until it is incorporated and very thick. (About 2-3 minutes) This is called a Roux, and is a starter for many gravies, soups and stews.
Then slowly whisk in 2 – 3 ladles of the pork juices. Whisk the mixture until it comes to a boil and then turn off the heat.
Keep whisking until the mixture gets very thick.
Pour the thickened mixture back into the crock pot and mix it with the remaining juices so that you get a gravy – like consistency.
Put the pork back into the crock pot and mix everything together.
Serve over rice or smashed potatoes, with roasted veggies and a green salad!