Lately I’ve been on a bit of a de-cluttering kick and decided to sort through my freezer. The idea is to cook my way to an empty (or almost) freezer. As I went through everything I found that I had more pork than anything else (not surprising really – pork is one of my favorites). You can often find me making pork burgers, pork ragú, grilled pork chops, carnitas, or one of my recent favorites, rotisserie pork. 

One problem with decluttering is that I usually end up buying new groceries to go with food I’m trying to use up. However, occasionally a meal comes together that uses only ingredients already on hand (perhaps from a previous hankering for brie, or a need for a slice or two of tomatoes on a burger) and/or that are growing on my balcony (for other balcony gardeners in Ames see The 6×8 Garden, recently featured on The Kitchn). Also, during the summer I like meals that I can cook once, preferably outside on my grill, and then turn into at least a few meals. I’ve found that one pork roast (loins make nice lean meals, but take care not to cook it too long – a 150 F is a good max temperature) takes about an hour to cook in my grill on a rotisserie, and that it can feed me for about a week (useful when I’m studying for an exam in statistics).

If you find yourself without a rotisserie you can probably still grill the pork – just turn it occasionally and cook it over lower heat (it may take a bit longer this way) or you can roast it in your oven (but that puts a lot of heat in the house). To prepare the meat I just dry it off and rub enough salt, pepper, and freshly minced thyme and rosemary to cover the whole surface of the meat. After cooking I let the meat rest for about 10-15 minutes before slicing it really thin (I put most of it straight in the frig to save for later). This isn’t much of a recipe, but it is delicious (and hey – Tom Colicchio just did a whole book on sandwiches, which I may need to pick up).

Pork and Brie Sandwich

Roasted Pork (about 4 ounces per person)
Tomato slices (use something that taste good, preferably from your own garden or the farmer’s market)


  1. Slice the ciabatta into 4 inch wide chunks and slice in half. Cover both sides with thin slices of ripe brie (I used the brie-like Fromager d’Affinois). If the grills hot take the cheese covered bread out there to get warm and a little toasted. If not, broil on high for about 30 seconds.
  2. Lay a few slices of pork down on the bottom piece of bread. Top with some lettuce (I used a mix of red sails and young romaine from my containers) and a couple of slices of tomato (I used black krims from the local coop).
  3. You can also add spicy brown mustard or slices of onion, but I like it simple to let the cheese and herbal pork shine through. Serve with a side salad with fresh red wine or balsalmic vinegrette and you have tasty simple meal.