Saturday, January 28, 2012

Weekend Cooking...Pork Rolls Stuffed With Ricotta and Spinach

What to cook, what to cook??

Well, I am a believer that you should cook to use up what is on hand whenever possible, so when I saw this recipe in the Philadelphia Inquirer the other day, I was hooked. I had that left over container of ricotta in the frig (wow, that has a long expiration date!) and that boneless pork loin I bought on sale at the supermarket.

OK, yes, I made some changes in my version.
The original recipe use 1/8 lb. slices and I used 1/4 lb. pieces, slicing a one pound piece in four. Pork dries out easily and that original thickness sounded too thin. They put the pancetta on the outside, I rolled it into the filling and I added the Parmesan cheese. They used toothpicks to close, which never works for me or the thicker pieces, so I tied them. I dusted the rolls with flour, to get that extra browning, added garlic to the sauce and I add the parsley and capers to the sauce at the end and reduced it to concentrate the flavors.
OK, I made quite a few changes, but the idea is the same.

Pork Rolls Stuffed With Ricotta and Spinach
(adapted from Cucina Provera)

Makes 4 servings
  • 8 ounces spinach, steamed, drained and finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup whole-milk ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup grated parmesan cheese
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Freshly ground nutmeg
  • 1 pound boneless pork loin, sliced into 4 pieces
  • 4 thin slices pancetta
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2-3 cloves finely chopped garlic
  • 1 Tbs. chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp. capers
1. In a medium bowl, combine the spinach, parmesan and ricotta and stir to blend. Season with salt, pepper, and nutmeg to taste. Set aside.

2. Place a slice of pork between 2 pieces of parchment paper, and roll with a rolling pin until flattened to an even thickness, about 1/4 inch. Repeat to flatten the remaining slices. Put on a slice of pancetta and spread a thin layer of the spinach mixture on top, leaving a 1/4-inch border. Roll up and tie at each end with cooking string to secure. Repeat with remaining pork. Roll each piece in flour until just dusted.
3. In a large, heavy saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat, and sear the rolls for about 2 minutes on each side. Remove the pork, add chopped garlic and brown slightly. Now add the wine and stir to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. 
Put the rolls back in the pan and simmer briskly for 7 to 8 minutes, turning the rolls once or twice to cook them through. Remove pork to a plate and cut and remove the string. Add parsley, and capers, if desired, and bring to a boil, reducing sauce to desire thickness. 
Taste and adjust salt and pepper if needed.
Serve at once.


Very nice, I must say, and pretty quick to cook.
I loved the pork, by I think it would be just as good with veal or chicken or even beef. And you could use stock instead of wine, although the wine adds a lot of flavor to the sauce. And the dish is nice served with a glass of it as well.

This is my contribution this to this week's Weekend Cooking.
"Weekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, fabulous quotations, photographs. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend."
Be sure to check out the other entries this week. As always, hosted by Beth Fish Reads.


  1. Oh my gosh! This stuffed pork recipe look divine. Heading to the grocery store right now!

  2. I think I know what is for supper.... LOL - this looks delicious!

  3. It looks amazing, stuffed and sauced, I would love it. And yes, a nice glass of wine would be nice, too :)

  4. Now this looks awesome. Next time I visit my meat guy I'm going to ask for boneless pork. I love your additions.

  5. Very creative Caite. I love the way you took an idea and made it your own recipe. Looks so good.

  6. My mouth is watering! This looks so good. Even though I finished lunch I'm hungry again. Lol.

  7. Stuffed pork loin is one of my favorite things to put together when we have friends over - fairly simple to put together, and a great presentation.

    I'm going to try this variation, Caite ... thanks for sharing it.

  8. This does look very tasty. Adding wine is perfect. Yum!

  9. Those looks wonderful and relatively healthy compared to hubby's favourite of Chicken Kiev. Have been trying to find him a replacement. this just might be it. Thanks.

  10. Oh, this looks so good! Bookmarking this recipe to try at some point in the future!


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