Spinach and Sausage Stuffed Pork Roulade (Holiday Version)

Makes 48 servings
Finished Roulade, sliced

Ingredients:

3 (8 pound) top pork loins (or center cut boneless pork roast)
Butcher’s twine (cotton)
Roasting pan(s) with rack

Filling:
3 lbs. mild southern sausage, loosely chopped
2 Tbsp chopped garlic
1 1/2 cups diced red bell pepper
6 (10 oz) frozen spinach, squeezed dry and coarsely chopped
1 Tbsp. dried oregano
4 envelopes onion soup mix
2 lbs mushrooms, finely chopped
1 ½ teaspoons ground black pepper
3 cups fresh bread crumbs
3 cups slivered almonds, lightly toasted
1 ¼ cup parsley, finely chopped
4 Tbsp. dried thyme leaves
1 dozen eggs, slightly beaten
Salt & pepper to taste

Broth (Roasting):
6 small yellow onions, thinly sliced
12 carrots, peeled and cut into thick slices
12 ribs (2 stalks) celery, cut into thick slices
Salt, pepper, garlic powder & onion powder
2 1/2 cups water

For Sauce:
3 cups bourbon
4 cups pan drippings + chicken broth, if needed
10 sprigs fresh thyme*
5 sprigs fresh rosemary*

*NOTE: I often make a cheesecloth bouquet garni with dried spices for the sauce

Directions:

1. In a large bowl, combine the Filling ingredients mixing well. Set aside.
2. Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.

Steps to prepare the rouladeRoulade:
3. Prepare the loin by carefully cutting 3/8” deep lengthwise with a long filet knife and then in a circular pattern ‘unrolling’ the loin into 1 long piece.
4. Pound the meat with a mallet to 1/2 inch thickness. Refrigerate until ready to assemble.
5. Spread the Filling down the center of the pork to the edge of the shorter sides and to an inch on both long sides. Roll from the short side, creating the roulade.
6. Use the cotton twine to tie at several intervals keeping the shape even.
7. Sprinkle the entire roulade with salt, pepper, garlic powder and onion powder to taste.

Roasting:
8. Mound the Sauce Ingredients: onions, carrots and celery in the bottom of a greased roasting pan.
9. Place the rack over the vegetables and place roulade, fat cap up, over the vegetables.
10. Insert a meat thermometer through the side of the roulade into the sausage at the thickest part of the roll.
11. Add the water to the pan. Cover. Cook for 3 ½ – 4 hours or until internal temperature reaches 155 degrees F. (Add additional water or chicken stock if needed to render 4 cups of drippings after cooking time.)
12. Remove the roulade from roasting pan and cover tightly with foil to finish cooking. The temperature will rise about 10 degrees after it is removed from the heat.
13. Reserve the cooked vegetables for later use as a soup base or other flavoring.

Sauce:
14. Pour a cup of the drippings into a large saucepan, stir in the bourbon and bring to a boil cooking gently 3 or 4 minutes to thicken, until most of the liquid has evaporated. (The alcohol will flambé and cook off). Stir constantly after the flames go out.)
15. Stir in chicken broth. Add the thyme, and rosemary (or bouquet garni. Bring back to a boil, then reduce heat. Simmer uncovered for 10 minutes.
16. Remove from heat and discard thyme and rosemary sprigs. Cool slightly.
17. To serve, cut meat into 1/2 to 3/4 inch-thick slices. Serve meat with a drizzle of the sauce. This will be a very flavorful sauce, so use sparingly.

This is a spin-off of our Spinach and Sausage Stuffed Pork Roulade recipe, with the additional holiday style seasonings, and the carrots, onions and celery vegetables at the bottom of the pan, which gives this Roulade a very special flavor fit for the holidays.

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