I’m not someone who makes the same thing every Christmas. I like to change it up a bit. One of the big reasons is that I don’t particularly enjoy a massive feast of hot dishes in the middle of summer. We have quite a few traditions in our household. But the Christmas meal is not one of them.
While searching for something different for this year’s main, I came across a delicious looking stuffed pork recipe. As with most recipes though, I have changed it up a bit to suit our taste. The result, this Mediterranean Stuffed Pork Loin. It is definitely a winner. I love it so much that I’ve made it twice already and it’s not even Christmas yet.
The hero of this dish is the stuffing. It is such an amazing combination that it works well with almost any meat, both red and white. It’s super versatile so whether you want to serve pork, beef or lamb, or even chicken or turkey, this Mediterranean stuffing is divine.
It’s a combination of sundried tomato tapenade, spinach, chopped sundried tomatoes and mozzarella. Boy is it yum. A fun little bonus are the festive colours too. The other element that makes this a winner is the rub and marinade. It’s an absolute flavour bomb and makes the meat so incredibly tender you barely need a knife.
For a one stop shop for all the delicious ingredients I used (except for the loin and spinach), check out The Olive Basket. They had all the ingredients I needed which made it super convenient. The best part, it gets delivered straight to your door.
I will definitely be serving this Mediterranean Stuffed Pork Loin for Christmas this year. I hope you’ll give it a try too. As mentioned, I’ve already made it twice, with both pork and beef. So feel free to use whatever protein you wish.
Mediterranean Stuffed Pork Loin
- 800 grams Pork loin or Beef fillet (800g – 1kg)*
- 2 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 Small onion Finely chopped
- 2 Cloves of garlic Crushed
- 200 grams Baby Spinach Roughly Chopped
- 1 Tbsp Dried Italian Aromatics/herb mix
- Pinch of Chilli powder
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- 3 Tbsp Sundried Tomato Tapenade
- ½ Cup Mozzarella** Grated/Shredded
- ¼ Cup Sundried Tomatoes Chopped
Rub & Marinade
- 2 Tbsp Dried Italian Aromatics/herb mix
- Salt and Pepper
- ⅓ Cup Balsamic Vinegar
- 3 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 Tbsp Honey
- 1 Tbsp Wholegrain Mustard
- 2 Sprigs of Rosemary
Prep & Stuffing
- Prepare your ingredients for the stuffing and begin with the spinach mixture as it needs to drain
- Finely chop the onion, crush the garlic and roughly chop the spinach. Place a large pan on medium heat. Add the olive oil, onion and garlic and let it sauté for a minute or two. You just want it to soften, not brown. Add the spinach then season with the herbs, chilli powder, salt and pepper. Stir for a minute or two until it starts to wilt. Remove from the heat and place the mixture into a sieve or strainer over a bowl to let any liquid drain
- Next, if using a loin or fillet, slice the meat lengthways down the middle, NOT all the way through, and fold open, butterfly style. Use a meat mallet the flatten both sides to have one larger flat piece. Place a piece of plastic wrap down, then lay around 5 pieces of string/twine across, this will help when you need to wrap the meat. Place the meat on top
- Season the inside of the meat with salt and pepper, then spread the tapenade evenly over the piece of meat. Then place the spinach mixture in the centre, spreading it out just a little. Top with the chopped sundried tomatoes
- Next, place the grated/shredded cheese down the centre lengthways
- Using the plastic wrap the help you, lift one of the long sides and roll it towards the opposite side to encase the filling. Once the two edges are touching, tie the strings tightly enough to keep the filling inside. Transfer the roll to a lightly oiled oven dish
Rub & Marinade
- Season the outside of the meat really well with salt and pepper and the herbs. Give it a rub to ensure it is covered well
- Mix together the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, honey and mustard until well combined
- Pour the marinade evenly over the meat. Place the two sprigs of rosemary on top and cover the dish with a cover, lid or plastic wrap. Set aside to marinade for at least 1 hour
- Heat the oven to 220°C
- When the oven is hot, roast the pork for 15 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 190°C for 20 – 30 minutes, depending on the weight of the loin. If you have a meat thermometer, check that the internal temperature of the meat is 63°C at the thickest part. Remove from the oven, cover with foil and let rest for at least 10 minutes before carving and serving