Thursday, August 6, 2009

Crispin Cider Brined Pork and Braised Kohlrabi

I've always been a fan of hard apple cider, I find it a refreshing option from beer & wine especially on a warm summer day. Recently a new hard cider has come on the scene which in our opinion puts most others to shame. Minneapolis-based "Crispin Super-Premium Natural Hard Apple Cider is true to the apple in the way a varietal wine stays true to its grape. It’s naturally fermented with classic red wine yeasts for full-bodied taste, using premium apple juice blends not from concentrate, and without added malt, spirit or grape alcohols." It's crisp & refreshing without being overly sweet like a lot of other ciders tend to be. Right now Crispin is available in Original, Light & Brut but we are really excited about the Honey Crisp varietal coming in October.
(photo courtesy of Crispin)
Recently, Crispin & Heavy Table announced a Summer Grilling Adventures Contest asking people to submit their best grilling recipe that uses Crispin Cider as one of the ingredients. At first it seemed like a waste to not just drink the cider over ice but then I tasted the final result. The pork gets a distinct fresh apple flavor (more apple flavor than I expected actually) with a touch of spices from the brine. The brine also helps the pork remain incredibly juicy.
Crispin Hard Cider Brined Pork
We made a side dish using some kohlrabi from our garden and Crispin as well. Kohlrabi is a member of the cabbage family so I thought it would be good braised like cabbage often is. It gets a sweet, apple flavor that is perfect with the pork. I also like the fact that kohlrabi retains a bit of a crunch.
Crispin Hard Cider Braised Kohlrabi
We used the brut variety of Crispin which they describe as "European-style extra-dry over ice. The 'champagne' of ciders; combining subtlety and sophistication; the epitome of unforced elegance. A crisp fresh apple bouquet with a brisk, refined finish that lingers on the palate."

Crispin Cider Brined Pork
Brining Time: 4 - 12 hours
Grilling TIme: 30 minutes
Resting Time: 5 minutes

1 1/4 - 1 1/2 lb pork tenderloin
1 batch Crispin Brut Hard Apple Cider Brine (see below)

Put the pork into a resealable bag. Add the brine. Get as much air as possible out of the bag & seal. Place in a bowl just big enough to hold it. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours up to overnight.

Heat grill to medium-high. Remove pork from brine & place over direct heat. Grill until pork reaches 160 F, turning from time to time. Remove pork from grill & let rest 5 minutes before slicing in 1/2-inch slices.

Serves 4

Crispin Cider Brine
(This brine would also be great with chicken or turkey.)
Cook Time: 15 minutes

12-oz bottle Crispin Brut Hard Apple Cider
1 cinnamon stick
4 whole cloves
4 whole allspice
4 whole peppercorns
1/4 t ground ginger
1 T packed brown sugar
1 T kosher salt

Put all the ingredients in a small saucepan & bring to a boil. Reduce the heat & simmer for ten minutes. (Your kitchen will start to smell like some fabulous baked good & that's not a bad thing.) Let cool to room temperature before adding to meat.

Crispin Cider Braised Kohlrabi
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 45 minutes

1 T butter
1 sweet onion, thinly sliced
1 lb kohlrabi, julienned
1/2 c Crispin Brut Hard Apple Cider
1 T cider vinegar
1 t brown sugar
salt & pepper

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium high heat. Add the onions & cook until turning a golden brown, about 10 - 15 minutes. Add kohlrabi, cider, vinegar & brown sugar. Season with salt & pepper. Reduce heat to a simmer, cover & cook for about 30 minutes until most of the liquid as been absorb.

Serves 4

If you are not reading this post in a feed reader or at OR at then the site you are reading is illegally publishing copyrighted material. Contact me at katbaro AT yahoo DOT COM. All recipes, text and photographs in this post are the original creations & property of the author unless otherwise noted.
© 2007-2009 Kathy Lewinski


Claire Dawson said...

Sounds great - I'm a Twin Cities local, too, and would love to try the cider. Where did you find it? I checked their site, but didn't see a distributor list or buying info.

kat said...

Claire - We've bought it at both South Lyndale Liquor in Mpls & Four Firkins in St. Louis Park. I know bars in the area like The Happy Gnome have it as well.

Thistlemoon said...

I love love love hard cider! I love those bottles it comes in, really makes you think "crisp"! My favorite cider is Woodchuck Dark and Dry!

grace said...

IF i could resist drinking the hard cider as is, this would be a lovely use for it. but that’s a big if. :)

Kris said...

I'm a beer drinker but I will say this is the best cider I've had. Much better than many of the overly sweet ciders on the market. Brut is my favorite of their line up so I might have to give this recipe a try. Then I can drink the other 3 bottles.

Kirby! said...

LOVE the idea of using cider on the pork! I've been doing experiments cooking with beer lately, and this looks like a really good variation. And I love me some kohlrabi too!!

Alicia Foodycat said...

When you put sweetcorn on your pizza, I thought you had gone nuts. But now you have redeemed yourselves. This looks wonderful! I do like a good cider.

Lori said...

I have never had hard cider. Looks like I need to try it.

Karen Brown Letarte said...

What an innovative recipe! I especially like the imaginative kohlrabi dish. No one else at my house likes it but me... but this might win them over!

I don't drink alcohol much, but I do enjoy a hard cider now and then! I'll be eager to hear how the Honey Crisp cider is in Oct.

Anonymous said...

Did you guys win for this recipe? It looks amazing!!!!!

Recetas al instante said...

looks really yummy.

Tangled Noodle said...

Congratulations!! I just saw the announcement on Heavy Table that you've won their recipe contest. I've yet to try Crispin but I am going to head to their site right now and find out where I can find some. In the meantime, I'm bookmarking this post not only for this insanely delicious-looking cider-brined pork but also for the braised kohlrabi, my new favorite vegetable!

I hope you're having an awesome time in India!

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t = teaspoon
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