Friday, February 10, 2012

0 Hormel Pork Roast Aus Jus vs Home made Pork Roast

When some people think of comfort food they think of meatloaf, or mac 'n cheese, or pizza, but I think of pork roast. The smell of the pork roasting in the oven reminds me of Sunday dinners at my Aunt Midgie's house, the comfort of being surrounded by family and love. What wonderful memories...

I also really love the taste of pork, almost any kind of pork. Pork Roast, Country Spare Ribs in Sauerkraut, BBQ Baby Back Ribs, Pork Chops, Moo Shoo Pork, Tonkatsu, Schnitzel – whatever you call it, I love it! One of the great things about eating pork roast is getting that nice crispy end of the roast. Yum! Another great thing about it is having left-overs!  Slice the roast thin and heat it on the stove top in gravy.  Easy & quick, it will make up for some of the time you spent cooking this meal from scratch.

By now you already know that I love garlic too. So, you won't be surprised to learn that my pork roast has tons of garlic in it. I “stud” the roast with slivers of garlic – you don't have to do this and it will save time if you just want to sprinkle the roast with garlic powder but of course the garlic flavor won't be as intense either. I also like to cut up potatoes, onions and carrots to put around my roast too, just like Aunt Midgie did. And when the roast is done, don't forget to serve it with some delicious (unhealthy) gravy (November 19th).

Now, I'm comparing a Roast Loin of Pork with Hormel's Pork Roast Aus Jus – you should know enough about me by now to know that I've never purchased or eaten this product, but I think it's probably similar to a home made pork roast. Hormel's package claims that a serving size is 5 oz and the package serves 3.5 people – don't you love that? Hmm, I'll just invite 2.5 people over for dinner.... I believe that a serving size should be 4 oz but for comparisons sake the nutritional data will be based on a 5 oz serving of meat only.

In addition, their package says their “fork tender” roast was slowly simmered in aus jus and to serve it with sides. I don't know about you, but why would you take a nice piece of meat that's “fork tender” and put it in a microwave to cook? I think that would make it tough. If you put the carrots, onions and potatoes around the roast – there's one of your sides taken care of already. Just add a salad and an in-season fresh vegetable and you're done. The meat in this recipe will shrink some, but should serve 8-10 people. I'm basing the “side” on about 4-6 people, then you'll have left-overs of the meat.

Roast Loin of Pork
3 lbs Loin of Pork
4 garlic cloves, each cut into about 3 slivers
4 md onions
6 lg carrots
6 md potatoes
2 Tbl olive oil
salt & pepper to taste

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. With a sharp paring knife, make 3 small slits across the top of the roast and repeat about every two inches down the top of the roast. Insert your garlic slivers into these slits. Put your roast in a large roasting pan. Drizzle 1 Tbl of oil over roast, sprinkle with salt & pepper. Peel onions and slice about 3 very thin slices and lay across the top of the roast. Cut the remainder of the onions into quarters, peel and cut the carrots into thin 3-4” long strips, peel and quarter the potatoes, arrange all of the vegetables around the roast (something like, onion, potato, carrot, onion, potato, carrot, etc. - after you put them all around, you can layer them if needed) Drizzle the remaining oil over the vegetables and sprinkle with some salt and pepper. Put in the oven and roast for about 1 ½-2 hours or until it reaches an internal temperature of 160 degrees. Put roast on a serving platter and let sit for a few minutes (while you make your gravy) to let the juices settle, serve the vegetables in a large bowl.


Price for home made Pork Roast: $6.00 per pound
Price for Hormel Pork Roast: $8.80 per pound

Ingredients in home made Pork Roast: Pork, Garlic, Onion, Salt & Pepper
Ingredients in Hormel Pork Roast: Pork, Water, Salt, Dextrose, Spices, Onion Powder, Garlic Powder, Modified Cornstarch, Caramel Color, Spice Extractives

Preparation time for home made Pork Roast: 15 minutes prep, 30 minutes per pound
Preparation time for Hormel Pork Roast: 1 minute prep, 4 minutes in the microwave

Nutritional Data for home made Pork Roast
Calories 303
Calories from Fat 184
Total Fat 20 g
     Saturated Fat 7 g
     Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 82 mg
Sodium 116 mg
Total Carbohydrates 1 g
     Dietary Fiber 0 g
     Sugars 0 g
Protein 27 g
Vitamin A 0%
Vitamin C 2%
Calcium 1 %
Iron 7%

Nutritional Data for Hormel Pork Roast
Calories 180
Calories from fat 60
Total Fat 7 g
     Saturated Fat 2.5 g
     Trans Fat 0g
Cholesterol 85 mg
Sodium 600 mg
Total Carbohydrates 1 g
     Dietary Fiber 0 g
     Sugar 1 g
Protein 28 g
Vitamin A 0%
Vitamin C 0%
Calcium 0%
Iron 8%

For the life of me I can't figure out how their product has less calories, I suppose that they've trimmed all of the fat off, I can't figure the calories that way. Sorry, just don't eat the delicious fat on the outside... Anyway, you'll notice that the cholesterol is slightly lower in the home made and the sodium is significantly lower. It might take longer to prepare (it's mostly in the cooking time) – but it will be tastier and cheaper. Right from the beginning it's $2.80 per pound cheaper and you'll find pork roasts on sale often enough for a lot less that $6 per pound – just buy them then.

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