Kasseler-German Smoked Pork Loin
by Chef Sandy

German Kasseler Pork Loin

This recipe is for Kasseler, a traditional German cured and smoked pork loin, a favorite in Frankfurt am Main, and the very first German meal I shared with my husband on our trip to Germany a very long time ago.

The pork loin will have to cure for 2-4 days in the refrigerator, so be sure to plan ahead. This curing will result in a finished roast that is pink (ham-like) in color, but usually is a little leaner than ham, and has a slightly different flavor.

Kassler Pork Loin

Kasseler Recipe:

For a 3# pork loin (probably enough brine for 2 roasts)

Brine Ingredients:

4 C Water

1/4 C Morton's Tender Quick (Curing Salt)

3/4 C Sugar

1/4 C Kosher Salt

6 Bay Leaves

1 t Thyme

1Tbsp Peppercorns, cracked

1 t Coriander Seeds

6 Juniper Berries (or 1oz Gin)

2 C Ice Cubes

Bring water to a boil, then turn off the heat.  Add other ingredients and stir until salt and sugar are dissolved.  Add ice cubes and allow brine to cool. Rinse pork loin and place in zip-top gallon sized bag. When brine is totally cool, add to zip-top bag, remove excess air and put in a very cold place in your fridge.

After curing, the meat will have a firmer texture than when it was uncured.

Traditionally, Germans use Alder wood to smoke Kasseler, and I used about an ounce to smoke the 1 roast.

After rinsing the Kasseler, I placed it in my SmokinTex 1400 at 200°F for about 5 hours until the internal temperature read 150°F. Traditionally, the roast is cooled, wrapped and refrigerated at this point, then sautéed til golden brown in butter.  Enjoy with mustard, sauerkraut, German potato salad or a pretzel!


Chef Sandy

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