We tend to eat a lot of pork in the fall. I'm not sure why but for some reason it just fits with the traditional fall flavours. This impressive looking roast from Williams Sonoma is a perfect example - pork stuffed with apple sand served with a simple cider sauce. Lots of yummy fall flavours here!
This was a bit complicated to make . . . a good weekend meal when you actually have time to fuss and bother.
Don't let the added steps sway you - the end results are amazing!
Apple-Stuffed Pork Loin with Cider Sauce
2 Tbs. olive oil 1 1/2 cups chopped Golden Delicious or other baking apple 1 cup chopped yellow onion 1 garlic clove, finely chopped 1/2 cup finely chopped dried apples or 1/2 cup finely chopped dried apricots 1/4 cup raisins 1/4 tsp. dried thyme Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste 1/2 cup apple cider 1 boneless pork loin, 2 1/2 lb 1/4 tsp. dried thyme Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste 1 cup apple cider, plus more as needed 2 tsp. cornstarch
To make the stuffing, in a large frying pan over medium heat, warm the olive oil. Add the apple and onion. Sauté until golden, about 5 minutes. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add the dried apples and thyme. Season with salt and pepper. Add the cider and boil, stirring occasionally, until the cider is absorbed by the stuffing. Remove from hear and let cool.
Position a rack in the centre of the oven. heat over to 400.
Cut 4 pieces of kitchen string into 18 inch lengths.
Butterfly the pock loin by making a slit down its length, cutting just deep enough so that the loin opens up like a book. Do not cut all the way through.
Spoon the stuffing evenly onto the meat. Close the loin back up. Using the string tie at even intervals. Push in any of the stuffing which escapes from the ends.
Sprinkle the surface of the loin with thyme, season with salt and pepper.
Place the loin in a roasting pan and add 1/2 cup cider to the pan.
Roast the loin for 30 minutes. Baste with the pan juices and add the remaining 1/2 cup cider to the pan.
Continue to roast, basting at least twice more, until an instant read thermometer reads 150 degrees, about 45minutes more.
Transfer the roast to a cutting board and loosely cover with foil.
Scrape the bottom of the pan to remove and remaining bits. Pour the pan juices into a measuring cup -add additional cider so that you have 1 1/2 cup of liquid. In a small sauce pan combine 1/4 cup of the juices and the cornstarch. Stir until the cornstarch is dissolved. Add the remaining pan juices. Bring to a boil and cook, stirring, until the sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes. Taste and add salt and pepper as needed.
Cut the loin into slices and serve the warm sauce on the side.
I'm one of those folks who hated squash as a child but has come to appreciate it as an adult. I still don't love it by any stretch of the imagination but I no longer gag at the sight of it.
We had received a few acorn squashes in our CSA delivery over the past few weeks so I went on a hunt to find a good recipe for them. I have seen plenty of posts online about stuffed acorn squashed so that was the focus of my search. This recipe for squashed stuffed with sausage, bread crumbs, and nutty fontina cheese looked pretty yummy - particularly with the added hit from fresh sage.
I pulled this together last weekend while Paul was at work and I must say it was a huge hit at dinner. The pic doesn't do it justice. . . .
Dinner came together quickly - less than 45 minutes. The stuffed squash and a crisp salad was all that was needed.
Squash Stuffed with Sausage and Fontina
3 small (or 2 medium) Delicata (I used acorn) squash, halved lengthwise 3 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil kosher salt Black pepper 3/4 c. ground sweet Italian sausage 1 shallot, minced 2 cloves garlic, minced 1/4 c. finely chopped fresh sage 1 c. panko bread crumbs 3 oz. fontina, cubed (1 1/2 cups)
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Brush cut-side of Delicata squash with 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Place squash halves cut-side down on a baking sheet. Roast until softened, 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, cook sausage over medium-high heat until beginning to brown, about 5 minutes. Add shallot, garlic, and 2 tablespoons sage and cook until sausage is cooked through, 3 minutes more.
In a medium non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, heat remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add panko and remaining 2 tablespoons sage. Cook until golden, 3 to 4 minutes and season with salt and pepper.
Remove squash from oven and heat broiler. In a large bowl, combine sausage mixture, half the fontina, and half the bread crumbs. Stuff each squash half with sausage mixture and top each with remaining fontina and breadcrumbs. Broil until cheese is melty and bread crumbs golden, 2 minutes. Let cool slightly, then serve with a simple green salad.
It has been a mild fall here and as a result out CSA continued to deliver fresh from the ground veggies far later in the year than normal. In particular, a regular supply of beautiful bok choy. I decided on this stir fry from Food and Wine as a vehicle to enjoy it.
I really liked this dish, but I was hoping for more vegetables overall, especially more bok choy. The sauce had some nice heat without being too spicy (although I would have been happy with more :-) ), so I will definitely try this recipe again with more veggies - likely more bok choy, some onion, and some more peppers.
Ginger Sesame Chicken with Bok Choy and Mushrooms
1/2 cup chicken broth
3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1 tablespoon sherry
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon water
1/2 teaspoon unseasoned rice vinegar (I only had seasoned, so I used that)
1/2 teaspoon Asian sesame oil
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 pack of button mushrooms, sliced (feel free to use the pre-sliced kind)
1 pack of chicken tenders, cut into 1 inch pieces
Salt and freshly ground pepper
2 bunches of bok choy, thickly cut crosswise
1 small red bell pepper, sliced with seeds removed
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh ginger
1 garlic clove, minced
To make the sauce, combine the chicken broth, soy sauce, sherry, sugar, dissolved cornstarch mixture, rice vinegar, sesame oil, and crushed red pepper in a medium-sized jar. Shake well.
Prepare all your vegetables, ginger, and garlic.
In a large sauté pan, heat 2 teaspoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and tender, about 6 minutes.
Transfer the mushrooms to a large plate or bowl. Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add another 2 teaspoons of oil to the pan. Once heated, add the chicken and cook until just barely cooked through, about 4 minutes.
Transfer to the same dish as the mushrooms. Add 1 tablespoon oil to the pan and add the bok choy and red pepper. Cook for about 3 minutes
Transfer to the dish. Add the remaining 2 teaspoons to the sauté pan. Add the ginger and garlic and cook for 1 minute, or until fragrant.
Return the chicken and vegetables to the pan. Shake the sauce in the jar and add to the pan.
Bring to a boil and simmer until slightly thickened, about 1 minute.
We have had some challenging issues at work over the past few months. One of our members sent this video to me as inspiration during a particularly rocky time . . .of course it has stuck in my ear ever since . . .
With the flood of refuges from Syrian flowing over Europe many countries are reacting to Friday's terrorist attack by closing their borders. It does not help that one of the terrorists had a passport indicating he had travelled to Europe through Turkey and Greece - as many refuges do. Of course, one should wonder why a terrorist would be carrying ID at all. Critical thinking folks, critical thinking.
Nonetheless, the opposition here in Canada was quick to demonstrate a) that they are never afraid to use an opportunity to sow fear in the minds of Canadians, and b) that they are not capable of critical thought. They took to the media and questioned the government's plan to settle 25,000 Syrian refuges in Canada.
Slow roasted pork, sauerkraut, and apples . . . a perfect fall meal.
Even if you are not a beer lover or beer fan, there is some great food that goes along with a Oktoberfest celebration. Of course there are lots of meals involving sausages and wursts of various kinds, but there are also lots of uses for things like pork and cabbage. Williams-Sonoma posted some great recipes a little over a week ago that concentrated on the Oktoberfest meals.
This recipe was one of their selections. I have to say that I never had Oktoberfest food like this nonetheless, it is never to late to start.
I was unable to find a decent looking cut of pork shoulder so I used some meaty ribs and a pork loin roast. The cooking time was about half what it is in the recipe as a result.
Pork Shoulder with Sauerkraut and Apples
1 boneless pork shoulder roast, about 4 to 5 pounds Salt and freshly ground black pepper 2 tablespoons butter 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 onion, thinly sliced 3 Golden Delicious apples, peeled, halved and cored 1 tablespoon fresh thyme 1/2 cup dry white wine 2 pounds sauerkraut, squeezed dry 1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar 1 tablespoon caraway seeds (optional)
Lay the pork flat, boned side up, on a cutting board. Using a sharp knife, trim away any large pockets of fat. Starting at the thinner end of the meat, roll up the pork and securely tie the roll at regular intervals with kitchen twine. Season the pork generously with salt and pepper.
In a fry pan over medium-high heat, melt the butter with the vegetable oil. Add the pork and cook, turning frequently, until it is well browned on all sides, about 10 minutes. Transfer the pork to a platter.
Return the pan to medium-high heat, add the onion, apples and thyme, and saute until the onion and apples are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer the apple mixture to a bowl.
Pour off the fat from the pan. Return the pan to medium-high heat, add the wine and de-glaze the pan, stirring with a wooden spoon to scrape up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
Pre-heat the oven to 325 degrees. Cover the bottom of a large Dutch oven with the sauerkraut. Sprinkle the sauerkraut with the brown sugar and caraway seeds, if using. Place the pork on top of the sauerkraut and surround it with the apple mixture. Pour in the wine mixture. Cover, transfer to the heated oven and cook until the pork is fork-tender and shreds easily, about 4 to 5 hours.
Transfer the pork to a carving board. Using a sharp knife, cut the pork crosswise into slices about 1/2 inch thick, removing the twine from the pork as you slice. Place the sauerkraut on a large platter and top with the pork slices. Surround the pork with the apples and serve immediately.
We left the snow behind and headed to California for a long weekend of fun. We shoppedm toured wineries, tasted olive oil, met up with good friends, and ate some wonderful food. I can't wait for slow bowl 2009.