Four-rib pork roasts with an apple, bread and prune stuffing. Serve this savoury roast at Thanksgiving, Christmas or a fall dinner party.
2 1-kg pork rib racks
Fresh black pepper to taste
10 prunes, finely chopped
1/2 cup finely diced apple (Crispins, also known as Mutsus, Empires or Granny Smith)
1/2 cup finely diced onion
1 cup soft breadcrumbs (focaccia crumbs are especially good for this stuffing)
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1-1/2 tsp dried marjoram or thyme
1/2 tsp celery salt
Additional black pepper
Applesauce or gravy for serving, if desired
Step 1: Prepare rib racks for stuffing by "unfurling" the loin meat: keeping bones attached to the meat, use a sharp boning knife to cut along the base of the bones into the meat and "unroll" a 3/4"-thick slab of meat away from bones. When done, it should look like a rectangular piece of meat with the bones attached at one end. Prepare both racks this way. You can also ask your butcher to do this if you are unsure of the method.
Step 2: Lay meat with fatty outer side against work surface and cut side of meat facing up. Season cut side with black pepper.
Step 3: Mix remaining ingredients to make stuffing, being careful when blending in prunes that pieces don’t clump together. Divide stuffing in two. Pat each quantity in an even layer on each piece of meat. Roll meat back toward bones, like a jelly roll. Tie rolled meat with lengths of twine at ends of the rib racks as well as between each bone. Roast can be assembled to this point and chilled overnight.
Step 4: To roast, preheat oven to 350°F. Place racks on grill of roasting pan, fatty side up. Sprinkle with coarse salt and black pepper. Add 1/4" water to bottom of pan to prevent dripped juices from burning. Roast on middle rack 90 minutes, or until roasts are browned and internal temperature reads 160°F. Remove from oven and tent with foil 15 minutes before slicing. Serve with applesauce or gravy, if desired.