Monday, February 16, 2015

Recipe: Pork Loin with Cranberry Chutney

Pork Loin with Cranberry Chutney
Source:  Me (usual copyright restrictions apply)

Warning:  This is not authentic Indian food, especially the "pork" part.

The Spice Blend (substitute 5 t Panch Phoran if you do not have these spices)
1 t whole cumin seeds
1 t whole fennel seeds
1 t whole nigella (charnushka)
1 t whole fenugreek seeds
1 t whole brown mustard seeds (or yellow mustard seeds)

The Chutney
1T vegetable oil
1 c sugar
2 c water
1 t - 1 T salt
1 12-oz bag fresh whole cranberries

1 pork loin, about 1 lb 2 oz, trimmed of all visible fat
1-2 onions, cut into thin half-rings
1-2 gala apples, cored and chopped
3 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
¼ c golden raisins
red wine

cooked jasmine rice
steamed kale

To prepare the cranberry chutney, place half of each of the five spices in a small dry skillet and toast over medium heat for approximately five minutes, until they are golden brown and emit a toasted aroma. This spice blend is called Panch Phoran and can be purchased in Indian and specialty food groceries. Let the toasted spices cool on a paper towel, then grind them in a spice grinder and reserve. Heat the oil in a large skillet.  Place the remaining whole spices and cranberries in the hot oil, and stir-fry for 5 minutes, until the cranberries are plump and shiny, and the spices are sizzling.  Pour the contents of the pan into a saucepan, and set the skillet aside.  To the saucepan, add the sugar, the water, and the salt to taste. Over medium-high heat, bring to a boil while stirring to dissolve the sugar. Lower the heat to maintain a boil, and cook for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally until a thick sauce is formed. Stir in the ground spices during the last five minutes of cooking. Remove from heat. Store any extra sauce in the refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Preheat the oven to 425.  Reheat the skillet. Add the pork loin and turn it to sear on all sides. Place the pork loin in a casserole dish large enough to contain it and set aside. To the same skillet, add the onions, apples, and garlic.  (You may need to add additional oil at this point.) Cook the onions slowly, turning down the heat if necessary, until they are golden brown and carmelized. Add the golden raisins, a splash of water, and a splash of red wine. Stir all of the browned bits in the skillet back into the sauce. Add a fourth of the cranberry chutney to the sauce, bring briefly to a boil, and then pour over the pork loin. Cover the casserole dish, and bake for about 30 minutes, until the temperature of the pork loin reaches 165-175 F. Remove from the oven and let sit on the counter, covered, to continue cooking for 10-15 minutes. Serve with the remaining chutney, rice, and steamed kale.

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