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Charcoaled Pork Roast with French Brine

Note: Thankfully we're able to keep most of our herbs alive all winter in a sunny spot downstairs, and we had almost all of the ones called for in this recipe.  If you don't have your own or you don't have organic, just use what you have.
Author: Stanley Fishman via Kelly the Kitchen Kop


  • 1 3 pound bone-in pastured pork loin roast, with fat cap. We used 2 boneless pastured pork loins for our family, but didn't double the brine recipe below. Ours had some fat on it, but I don't know if it was a “fat cap”.
  • 1 quart filtered water
  • 1 Tablespoon coarse unrefined sea salt preferably from France
  • 1 Tablespoon dried organic thyme leaves
  • 12 sprigs fresh organic thyme
  • 4 cloves organic garlic slightly crushed
  • 2 imported bay leaves crushed
  • 8 sprigs fresh organic Italian parsley
  • 1 teaspoon organic mustard seeds
  • 20 organic whole black peppercorns


  • 1.  The day before you plan to cook the roast, prepare the brine.  Pour the water in a glass or stainless steel bowl large enough to hold the roast.  Add the salt and stir vigorously until the salt dissolves.  Add the rest of the brine ingredients, and stir well.  Add the roast to the bowl, bone side up.  Add more filtered water if necessary to cover the roast.  Cover the bowl, and refrigerate overnight.  (I just used a freezer baggie and mixed everything well with my hands, on the outside of the bag of course, and then added the pork roasts.) 
  • 2.  Remove the bowl from the refrigerator 1 hour before you plan to cook the meat, so it can come to room temperature.
  • 3.  Build a charcoal fire on one side of the cooker only.  (Read below for how Kent cooked the roast on our gas grill.)  Bring your cooker to medium high heat, with all vents fully open.  Place the roast on the grill, fat side up, with one of the meat sides of the roast facing the heat source in front of, but not over, the heat source.  Cover and cook for 20 minutes.
  • 4.  Rotate the roast so the opposite side faces the heat source.  Cover and reduce heat to medium low by adjusting the top vents to half-closed.  Cook for 30 minutes at medium low heat.
  • 5.  Add two handfuls of charcoal to the fire.  Cover and cook for another 30 minutes to 1 hour, or until the pork is fully cooked and done to your taste.   Add another two handfuls of charcoal if you want to keep cooking after an hour.  Check for doneness at 10 minute intervals.

Gas grill instructions:

  • Kent used Stanley's method, only with our gas grill, so he kept the roasts on indirect heat the entire cooking time (1 hour).  He did this by turning on the front burner only, but keeping the meat over the back burners.  He had the front burner on high (it was cold out), but it was never right under the meat.  He did flip the pork a couple times part-way through, and it ended up being cooked absolutely perfectly.  The roast was tender, juicy, and SO flavorful!