Roasted Pork Loin with Rosemary, Garlic and Fennel

We are a family of pork lovers... give us pork any which way and we are happy. At least once a month we roast a pork loin and we gobble it up. Rubbed with a blend of rosemary, garlic, and crushed fennel seeds, the roast is simple, fast, and delectable. For months I have wanted to share this family favorite with you, but every time we make it, we eat before I can take a photo.

  • 1 1/4 pound pork loin
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons dried fennel seeds
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped/pressed garlic
  • 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper

About 30-45 minutes before cooking, remove pork from the refrigerator.  Pat dry, salt the loin generously, and set aside.

Crush fennel seeds with a mortar and pestle. Add rosemary leaves, garlic, salt, pepper, and olive oil. Integrate ingredients and you've got your rub. Transfer mixture to a low bowl big enough to hold the pork loin.

Here's Otis prepping the rosemary. He knows the drill...

Preheat oven to 375.

Roll the loin in the fennel/garlic/rosemary mixture and coat all sides thoroughly.

Put a medium cast iron pan on the stove top over medium-high heat.

Brown all sides of the loin in the hot cast iron.

Place cast iron pan with the roast in the hot oven.

Roast for 25-35 minutes. Check for doneness with a meat thermometer - it should read 135-140 degrees when the pork is finished. Keep a close eye on the roast: it can go from undercooked to overcooked very quickly.

Let the roast rest for 10 minutes or so before slicing and serving. Cooked this way, the pork loin is juicy and slightly pink in the center.



  1. i've never cooked a good pork loin. i always overcook them. this looks fabulous. nice to see otis (or at least his hands!) cooking away. bella just peeked at the photo up above and agreed that it looks yummy. happy easter, passover, spring, etc...

  2. Thanks Phyllis. I really swear by that 130 degrees. An overcooked loin is so disappointing.
    Happy Easter!

  3. I have the same problem often....I cook something and it is gone before I have a chance to photograph it....but it's just means it is delicious... :)
    I am a pork lover myself and this one looks just mouthwatering....
    great photos.

  4. I can practically smell that lovely pine-y forest scent from all the rosemary. That's one fabulous pork roast.

  5. you have gorgeous photos throughout the blog. really lovely pork recipe, too. can't wait to try.



  6. This looks so good, and with rosemary and fennel it has to be.

  7. Thanks all for the kind comments. Wish I could share a slice of the pork with each one of you:)!

  8. You are aware that pork isn't considered safe to eat until it reaches an internal temperature of 160 degrees?

  9. Anonymous,
    From what I understand, the idea of cooking a pork roast until 160 degrees has been debunked by most chefs. I know that Thomas Keller in Ad Hoc At Home suggests an internal temp of 135 to 140. My local butchers who are also connected with a highly respected restaurant suggest an internal temp of 130. After removing the pork from the oven, it does continue to cook if you let it rest for 10-20 minutes. The inside should be lightly pink and moist, but not rare.
    I am by no means an expert on this issue, but this is my understanding.

  10. AnonymousJune 03, 2011

    This looks delish. I live on the far northern plains and my herbs are just now starting to get going... this recipe looks like a divine way to use them! Thanks for the inspiration!

  11. George TurinApril 11, 2012

    Was served this at a friend's house for Easter. Yum!

  12. thanks for sharing.

  13. Made this last night and it was unbelievable delicious! We didn't have fennel seeds so substituted for thyme and it turned out great. Thanks for the great recipe!


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