Niman Ranch Pork Loin -- WOW!
If you want a juicy, fine-fleshed pork loin with fantastic flavor (and zero gaminess), spring for a niman ranch pork loin.
i had always wondered about the niman ranch hype. now i understand!
this pork loin was so succulent. it had a thin fat cap, and rendered out quite a bit of fat (which i want to use, somehow). despite the amount of fat in the roasting pan, the loin was still juicy and super-tender, but not mushy in any respect. beautiful! it puts other pork loins to shame.
i seasoned it with only a decent sprinkling (technical term, i know) of everglades seasoning, prior to roasting. i've made a roast loin in the past, with inserted garlic and fresh sage, then drizzled with olive oil and sprinkled with fresh thyme. this would be perfect for the niman ranch pork loin, too, sans oil. no other pork loin in my memory was as tender as this latest pork loin.
this is how pork should be. the "other" white meat? man, i'd venture it's the "only" white meat that's worth eating. i couldn't recommend it more highly.
i got mine at harris teeter, which now carries it. i will be looking forward to trying niman's other pork products. beef, too. i'm sold ;-)).
the availability of good, niche market pork has me buying chops again--not just ribs and shoulders. recently a local market started carrying berkeshire pork. the raw chops are actually pink, not white. this harks back to the days when pork didn't try to be a chicken breast, when pork could be pork and not the other white meat--when chops could be rosy and a roast could have a layer of brown meat in it.
the pork i'm buying comes from a much smaller operation than niman ranch, even--eden farms. it is an iowa-based co-op that is now growing some national legs. time mag called the group, "the ben and jerry's" of pigs.
honestly, i'd pretty much written off pork chops until i cooked some rib chops from these folks several months ago. juicy, tasty and cheaper than fancy beef or lamb.
re: chef chicklet
hey chef c, i got a good deal -- "sell-by date" markdown! that's what spurred me to buy it, frankly; but girlfriend, i'm a happy camper. you know, though, i'd still pay full price if i were having a dinner party. yum.
i neglected to mention, there is a nice gelatin level under the fat in the roasting pan. i'm using it now to warm up the pork for lunch.