Crisp Halloween afternoon and a jug of fine Alsatian gewurz prompted me to fashion a hearty and extremely easy German-style dinner:

Take one pork loin roast, bone in (about 3.5 pounds) and stud it with slivers of garlic poked into slits all over its surface. Place in a small roasting pan and pop it into a preheated 425F oven for about two hours (30 minutes per pound).

During the first hour of roasting, take two cups of sauerkraut (Vlasic's old- fashioned in the jar is our choice) and rinse it in fresh water, then drain and press out the liquid. Toss the rinsed kraut in a bowl and stir in 1 teaspoon caraway seeds, a good grind of black pepper, and 1/2 cup of Sam Adams Dark Wheat or any German-style Dunkel Weizen beer. After one hour, discard all the fat that's cooked out of the pork loin, keeping any crunchy bits that have migrated to the bottom of the pan. Pour the kraut-caraway-beer mixture around the pork loin, and continue baking for another hour.

Let the pork sit at room temperature for about 10 minutes before slicing, and serve with the kraut and mashed potatoes. (I used the mixed Idaho and sweet- potato blend detailed here last week).

Made a mighty fine Halloween dinner with a quality Alsatian Gewurztraminer, but would have gone equally well with a Dunkel Weizen beer like that used to moisten the kraut.