Thursday, October 16, 2014

Mock Pork Marbella

This is a modification of a recipe from a couple of different places. The following is my variation of it and my family nearly lick their plates clean.

The key component for this is the pork loin. We use our own pork loin from pigs that were raised by a friend which we then butcher and process ourselves. So, I KNOW the quality of meat it top of the line and healthy.

Spray the bottom of a roasting pan.You can use a cast iron Dutch Oven if you have one- just do the whole process right in the Dutch Oven. If I am doing two loins, or two half-loins, I use my roaster so that I don't use up all the space in my oven.  Rinse and trim (if needed/necessary) the pork loin. I usually leave some of the fat on as that's where the flavor is! 

Sear all the sides of the loin in a frying pan that has been oiled with either bacon grease or coconut oil.  Remove loin to your roasting pan. Pour in 1 cup of balsamic salad dressing- off brand works fine- and bring to a simmer. Scrape all those delicious brown bits of flavor from the bottom of the pan. Pour the liquid back into your measuring cup and add a hefty splash of straight balsamic vinegar and 1/4 cup brown sugar. Stir well so the sugar dissolves. Add in 1 clove of garlic, minced, 1 T dried basil, 1/2 T dried oregano, and a pinch of salt.

Still following along? Don't quit on me now!

Now, add into your liquid 1/4 cup halved green olives and about 1/2 cup of prunes that have been roughly chopped.

Put the loin in the roasting pan and pour the liquid mix over top. Cover. Bake at 325 deg. until done. I did it one time for 4 hours and it was so moist and buttery, you almost needed to eat it with a spoon!

When it's done, take it out of the pan and set it aside, covered with a foil tent for 10 minutes to let it rest. Meanwhile, make a roux of butter and flour in a sauce pan. I use 2 T butter (no substitutes) and about 3 T flour. Skim off the fat from the drippings and discard. Strain out the olives and the some of the prunes. Set aside. Make a gravy with the liquid and roux. Add back in some of the prunes to the gravy.

To serve: either slice and place on platter with the olives and prunes scattered over top, or leave whole on platter and scatter the olives and prunes over top for presentation.

I serve this with a mashed potatoes and either carrots or broccoli. Round this meal out with some home baked bread, and you've got a winner!

This is equally good with boneless, skinless chicken or turkey breasts, or bone-in chicken thighs. We use the broilers that we raise ourselves or the turkeys our son raises for 4H. I think it makes all the difference in the final product when you use ingredients about which you can feel confident. Don't you?

Image courtesy of rakratchada torsap /


Mock Pork Marbella

1 pork loin, approx 3-4 lbs, trimmed as desired
1 cup any brand balsamic salad dressing
1/4 cup (hefty splash) of balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 T basil
1/2 T oregano
1 clove garlic, minced

Sear meat in bacon grease or coconut oil on all sides. Place into greased roasting pan. Pour in 1 cup balsamic salad dressing into browning pan and bring to a simmer. Scrape up all the little delicious bits of browned meat. Add rest of ingredients and pour over meat. Cover and cook at 325* until tender- 4 hours or so.

Remove. Tent. Make gravy. Serve. Inhale. Enjoy. Collect praises of awesomeness for mad kitchen skillz.

Oh, and clean up. 

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