Saturday, February 19, 2011

Pork loin with leeks

I'm on a bit of a pork roll. I never used to cook pork. My brother does, in an open fire pit. And it is delicious. But I never do. Not many people do really. And if they do, it is with crackling. Nobody I know cooks it on the stove.

Except myself and the Hazans.

Like chicken, then lamb, then risotto, now that I've discovered it I'm enjoying cooking my through all of the Hazan pork recipes that take my fancy. To recap highlights have been:

- Pork and Vinegar (Essentials);
- Pork with Apples and Plumbs (How to Cook Italian); and
- Pork with Cabbage (Every Night Italian).

The glaring omission from all of this, of course, is Marcella's famous Pork with Milk. I'm trying to psyche myself up to that one.

Anyway, I have loved them all. The apples and plumbs one was an obvious hit - who doesn't like a sweet fruit sauce with pork? The vinegar and bay leaves was a real surprise, with a flavour that we didn't expect, but that was sophisticated and delicious. The cabbage was mopped up to the last drop.

But onto leeks (from How to Cook Italian). The process is like the others. It is a very simple way to cook pork. I was worried I had too many leeks, but it was fine, as it turns out.

I kept cooking for a little longer than was called for, to ensure the leeks turned into a delicious sauce and were no longer recognisable as bits of leek.

And how was it? For me, it was very good, but not quite as delicious as the others. The pork tasted of well pork (which is a good thing) and the leeks were a delicious leeky sauce like an onion sauce but without the sweetness. I'd cook it again for the hell of it if I spotted some leeks.

We certainly got into it.

As a side, I had a productive Hazan Saturday afternoon, also cooking:
- Tuscan Ragu (double batch) (How to Cook Italian) - to freeze;
- Meat Broth for risotto (Marcella Says) - also to freeze; and
- Roast chicken with rosemary and garlic (How to Cook Italian) - in the fridge.

It is a point Marcella makes in an earlier book. If you are cooking for a few hours, why not do a few dishes at once. That makes your life easier down the track.

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