Posts filed under 'vegetables'

Pork loin, apples, and stuffing, oh my!

I’m not the only one who experiments in the kitchen, and dessert isn’t the only meal with which to experiment: recently, my mother took the reigns and searched the internet for a new and exciting recipe for roast pork loin. She must have been in the mood for apples, because this is what she made last night:
from the Food Network:
[quote]Roasted Pork Loin with Cider and Chunky Applesauce

Recipe courtesy Anne Burrell

Prep Time:
20 min
Inactive Prep Time:
15 min
Cook Time:
55 min


6 servings


* 2 sprigs rosemary leaves, roughly chopped
* 2 sprigs sage, roughly chopped
* 2 cloves garlic, smashed
* Pinch crushed red pepper
* Salt
* Extra-virgin olive oil
* 1 (6-chop) pork rib roast
* 2 large onions, sliced
* 1 bundle thyme, tied with string
* 3 bay leaves
* 2 quarts apple cider
* Chunky Applesauce, recipe follows


Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

In a food processor, combine the chopped herbs with the garlic, crushed red pepper, a generous pinch of salt and enough olive oil to make a paste. Brush the paste on the outside of the pork rib roast.

Toss the onions with olive oil, and salt, and place in the bottom of a roasting pan. Add the thyme, bay leaves and 2/3 of the cider. Place the pork on top of the onions and place in the preheated oven. Roast the pork at 425 degrees F for 20 to 25 minutes or until the pork has developed a lovely brown crust. Check the pork, stir the onions and cider if they are starting to burn. Add more cider when the level starts to go down.

Lower the oven to 375 degrees F and roast for another 30 to 35 minutes or until an instant-read thermometer reads 150 degrees F. If the crust on the pork starts to get too dark, cover it with foil. Remove 1 1/2 cups of the cider from the bottom of the roasting pan and reserve for the applesauce.

Let the pork rest for at least 15 minutes before carving. When ready to carve remove the pork from the bone and cut the loin into thin slices. Serve with the onions braised in cider and Chunky Applesauce.
Chunky Applesauce:

* 3 tablespoons butter
* 4 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into 1/2-inch chunks (toss the apples in lemon juice if not using right away)
* 1 1/2 cups of the reserved cider from the Roasted Pork Loin with Cider
* 1/4 cup apple cider
* 1 pinch ground cinnamon
* 1/4 cup heavy cream
* 1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and coarsely chopped

Melt the butter in a saucepan large enough to accommodate the apples. Add the apples and saute over medium-low heat until the apples start to soften. Add the reserved cider, apple cider and cinnamon and cook over low-medium heat until most of the cider has evaporated and the apples are cooked and very soft.

Add the heavy cream and walnuts and cook until the cream has reduced by half. The end result should be a very chunky, sweet/savory applesauce.
She didn’t make the Chunky Applesauce part of the recipe (she is philosophically opposed to cooking with cream), and substituted chicken stock because we were out of cider. Because she didn’t have some of the spices in the house, she bought a Recipe Inspirations set (card with pre-measured spices) for Apple & Sage Pork Chops. (Disclosure: I made the recipe from the card on a previous occasion in recent memory, and it got the same reception…)
It was still a good dinner main dish (involving more effort than the average dinner) but my sister complained about the pork and the cubed apples being too tough as well as the unaccustomed juxtaposition of sweet and savory flavors.
For the side dishes, I cooked the last of the organic spinach I had bought during my last visit to the last session of the NYC Union Square Greenmarket, as well as assembling and baking a small casserole dish of potatoes au gratin (for which I bought a carton of light cream beforehand) using only a ginourmous Yukon Gold potato (obtained at that same Greenmarket) which I was sure had to be at least a pound in and of itself. The problem was, that it wasn’t the pound and a half of potato the recipe called for, and with proportional reduction of the other ingredients, it _just made it_ to be the right volume to fit into a smallish, vintage, covered casserole. The recipe called for one-third cup of unsalted butter; I reduced it by nearly half. I wish I had put even less unsalted butter on the top than I did, because when it came out of the oven, the sides of the casserole were slightly greasy, meaning that the butter had bubbled up and run down the sides while it was in the oven. Though I had a smaller quantity of potatoes au gratin than I had originally planned, I was informed that it wasn’t ready whenever my mother checked it. Indeed, it wasn’t ready to come out of the oven until well after dinner and even dessert. So it resides in the fridge as a leftover to be served another day.

Add comment January 18th, 2012

Purple Peruvian Potatoes, White Tomatoes, and Dandelion Greens

Some people have allegiance to a particular supermarket. I shop ‘em all, but being a New Yorker, the Greenmarket is always an option, and as my family has decided to boldly try more “healthy” foods, I have recently started to frequent the Union Square greenmarket with its plethora of unusual exotic vegetables, free-range meat, locally-produced honey, flour, and more. Earlier this week, I bought white tomatoes, popcorn on the cob (more about this in a future posting), and dandelion greens, among other things, including but not limited to Peruvian purple potatoes (these were my sister’s request).
I had tried dandelion greens at my grandfather’s house years ago when I was a kid. I found them too bitter for my taste, but I had wanted to appreciate them at the time, because my grandfather made a big deal about what a gourmet item it was.
So, with a lot more years and dress rehearsals of eating arugula and drinking coffee under my belt, I bought the big bundle of dandelion greens. As per the farmers’ market suggestion, I squeezed lemon juice over them before serving. It cut the bitterness, but only somewhat. They weren’t as bitter as I remembered, perhaps being a larger and broader leaf version than my grandfather’s backyard lawn weeds, but they were still too bitter for comfort, and still a little too tough for my sister. I had used only about a quarter of the dandelion greens in the salad with the white (really pale yellow) tomatoes (which taste just like regular tomatoes, but have slightly tougher skins), and, since they came with the roots still on, stuck the rest of the bundle in a coffee mug with a little water in the bottom before putting ‘em in the fridge. To my dismay, I discovered that a lot of the leaves (enough to be conspicuous) had nevertheless wilted and withered. So, I found a recipe for cooked dandelion greens on the double…here’s hoping there are enough left unwilted to make this successfully:

Add comment November 19th, 2010


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