Monthly Archives: September 2010

eating pork in New York?

meats at Murray's Cheese Shop

Sorry that we've been a little silent around here.

Our cookbook came out, two weeks early. What an amazing few weeks this has been! So much joy and so little sleep.

We're leaving for New York. Tonight! We have a wonderful week ahead of us, filled with gatherings, laughter, and the chance to meet so many of you reading.

And of course, we're going to eat some really great pork. Prosciutto, bacon, jamon serrano. (I took the photograph above in February of 2006, my last trip to New York before meeting Danny. As you can see, the pork passion happened long ago.)

We'll be doing mobile blogging during our time in that great city, so you can expect photographs of porchetta and charcuterie makers. We'll tell you more when we come back, as well. After all, New York is one of the great cities of the world. It's got to have some great pork.

So we need your help. Where should we eat?

jfdghjhthit45

prosciutto-wrapped pork loin

prosciutto-wrapped pork loin

Dinner doesn't have to be complicated to look elegant.

Pork loin, prosciutto, a hot pan, and a hot oven. That's about all you need.

4 6-ounce pieces of pork loin

salt and pepper

3 tablespoons canola oil

20 slices good prosciutto (we love La Quercia, of course)

Preheat the oven to 450°.

Season the pork loins with salt and pepper. Go easy on the salt, because the prosciutto will add its own salt.

Set a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the oil to the hot pan.

Sear the seasoned pork loins, browning on all sides, about 3 minutes per side.

Slide the sauté pan into the hot oven. Roast until they reach an internal temperature of 155°, about 10 to 12 minutes.

While the loins are roasting, separate the slices of prosciutto from each other. Lay them out, ready to roll, with groups of 3 slices overlapping each other.

Take the pork loins out of the oven. Turn the oven up to 500°. Wrap them in the 3-slice group of proscuitto.

Add the pork loins back to the pan. Slide it into the oven to crisp up the prosciutto, about 2 to 3 minutes.

Voila! An elegant presentation without much fuss.

jfdghjhthit45

pork medallions with eggplant caviar

pork medallions with eggplant puree

It's the end of summer, so eggplants and blackberries are still barely hanging around. But it's the start of fall, so it's time for sauces and hot dishes again.

Here's our recent favorite summer/fall meal. The seeds of the eggplant will not puree, so they resemble caviar in this dish. It has a certain interesting elegance. We think you'll like it too.

1 large eggplant
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 apples (we like Granny Smiths for the tartness)
½ yellow onion, fine-chopped
2 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced thin
2 teaspoons fine-chopped fresh thyme
¼ cup Parmesan cheese
¼ cup fresh ricotta
2 tablespoons fine-chopped fresh chives
Kosher salt and cracked black pepper

12 ounces pork loin
1 tablespoon canola oil

1 cup chicken stock

handful blackberries

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Preheat the oven to 400. Cut the eggplant in half. Toss the eggplant with enough olive oil to coat it. Season it with salt and pepper.

Peel the apples and core them.

Put the eggplant and apples into a roasting pan and slide them into the oven. Roast until the eggplant is soft but without color, about 15 to 20 minutes. The skin should be easy to peel.

Take it out. Let it cool to slightly warmer than room temperature.

Peel the skin off the eggplant with a paring knife. Cut it into 3 pieces each.

Sauté the onions and garlic, until they are soft and translucent, about 7 minutes. Add the fresh thyme and cook until the fragrance releases in the room, about 1 minute.

Put the onion mixture into the food processor with the eggplant. Whirl it up. Add the olive while it spins.

Put the eggplant mixture back into a bowl. Fold the Parmesan and ricotta. Chives. Season.  Set aside.

Season the pork medallions on both sides with salt and pepper.

Set a large sauté pan on medium-high heat. Add the oil to the hot pan. Cook the pork medallions until they are firm, about 3 minutes per side.

Deglaze the pan with chicken stock. Cook on medium-high heat until the sauce has reduced in volume by ½. Add the butter and the blackberries.

Make a little napoleon, stacking the pork medallions with the eggplant caviar. Drizzle some sauce over the plate.

jfdghjhthit45

bacon cheddar biscuits

bacon-cheddar-biscuits-1-525

photo from the website Brown-Eyed Baker

Oh my goodness, I want those biscuits.

I mean, look at them. They’re flaky and buttery and golden brown. They lean against each other with insouciance. They arrest the eye and demand to be eaten.

Clearly I am losing my mind, looking at these biscuits.

Also, they have bacon in them.

The recipe for these beauties is on a lovely baking blog called Brown-Eyed Baker. The lovely Michelle, who created these biscuits, also created pancake cupcakes with maple-bacon frosting and brown sugar bacon buttermilk waffles.

Clearly, we need to visit this site often.