One-pot meals have their place, but often it's just as easy to make a simple main dish with vegetables and a salad--such as this simple weeknight pork roast. The roast cooks in under an hour and is hands-off once you put it in the oven. For that matter, preparing the roast for cooking takes less than five minutes. The roast does its thing in the oven while you zap a green vegetable in the microwave and toss a salad. For a really simple addition, you could roast some red skin potatoes in the oven with the pork roast. Just wash the potatoes well, cut them into one-inch chunks and toss them with a little olive oil, lemon pepper, and rosemary. They should be done about the same time as the roast (prick the potatoes with a fork to see if they're tender). You'll have a great weeknight meal that seems special and requires little fuss. Plus, because the vegetable and salad won't take long to fix, you might even have time to sit down and read a bit while the roast and potatoes finish cooking. You'll have more than one pot to wash later? Line the pans for the pork roast and potatoes with aluminum foil. The pans will just need a quick rinse. Even better, let someone else do the clean up, because you did the cooking.
Simple Weeknight Pork Roast -- Serves 6+
2-3 pound pork loin roast
1 teaspoon of onion powder
1/2 teaspoon of garlic powder
1/2 teaspoon of dried thyme leaves
1/2 teaspoon of dried rosemary leaves
1 teaspoon of fennel seeds
1/2 teaspoon of lemon pepper
1/2 teaspoon of salt
1/2 teaspoon of sweet paprika
1 tablespoon of brown sugar
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees, line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, and spray the foil with non-stick cooking spray. Mix together in a cup or bowl all the spices and brown sugar and rub the mixture onto all sides of the roast. Put the roast on the prepared baking sheet with the fat side up and spritz the top and sides of the roast with olive oil or non-stick cooking spray. Put the roast in the oven and let it cook until it registers 135 degrees on an instant read thermometer inserted into the middle of the roast (yes, only 135 degrees, or the roast will be tough). The cooking time should be about 50 minutes. Remove the roast from the oven and tent it loosely with aluminum foil. Let the roast stand for 15-20 minutes. The temperature will continue to rise. The temperature of the roast should reach about 145 degrees on standing. After the roast has rested for 15-20 minutes, slice it thinly to serve it. You probably will have plenty of leftovers for another meal unless people are very, very hungry.