Pork Loin “Alla Focettina”, Roasted Potatoes and some Veggies

Debi and I use this menu when we want to entertain without being strapped to the stove while cooking.
The Pork Loin just needs to get started, then it will cook for a couple of hours, before some touch ups and a few minutes of cooling off. Wash the vegetables and chop the potatoes far in advance, and when it comes time to feed your tribe, you will already be way ahead of your game.
About an hour and a half after you start cooking the meat, heat the oven and start the potatoes.
Then at the end, while the Loin and the Potatoes are cooling off, boil the vegetables.
You are ready to serve your meal.

INGREDIENTI

PORK LOIN "ALLA FOCETTINA"

Serves: 8 min / Prep Time: 5 / Cook Time: 2 Hrs

2 Lbs Lean Pork Loin (but some fat always helps the sauce)
4 Tbsp of Olive Oil
1 Handful of Fresh Mint
1 Handful of Thyme
1 Handful of Sage
1 Cup Red Wine (Preferably Sangiovese)
1 Glass of Whole Milk
Salt, Pepper

ROASTED POTATOES WITH FRESH HERBS

Serves: 6-8 / Prep Time: 10 min / Cook Time: 45 min

2 Lbs of Baby Gold Potatoes
2 Carrots
5 Cloves of Garlic, not peeled!
2 Shallots
1 medium sized branch of Rosemary
1 Handful of Sage
1 Handful of Thyme

BOILED VEGETABLES WITH GARLIC AND LEMON DRESSING

Serves: 4 / Prep Time: 5 min / Cook Time: 7 min

1Lb. of mixed Greens : Swiss Chard, Turnip, Mustard, Kale, Spinach.
5 cloves of Garlic
3 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive oil
½ Lemon
Salt and Pepper
Olive Oil, Salt, Pepper

PORK LOIN "ALLA FOCETTINA"

Recipe Inspired by our dear friend Marzia Rossetto, and developed over the phone in the course of the past three weeks.

1

Chop all the fresh herbs and set them aside.

2

In a cast iron pot (or your regular stew pot), heat up the Olive Oil on a medium-high flame, and then braise the Pork Loin for about 10 minutes, until crisp and golden. Lower the flame and add all the herbs, the flavor will explode, along with some very hot oil drops, so be careful, and make sure your herbs are dry.

3

As soon as the herbs start crispin’-up, add the wine and, still on a medium –high flame, let it evaporate until you cannot smell the alcohol anymore.

4

Lower the flame and cover with a lid, but not completely, let your meat breath! Turn about every 15-20 minutes, and cook for about two hours, adding half glasses of water if you think the sauce needs help.

5

When the Loin is ready, it is the time to cream it up with the milk; add the glass and stir in the sauce for about 10 minutes, then turn off the flame and let the meat sit for another 10 minutes before slicing it and serving it.

ROASTED POTATOES WITH FRESH HERBS

1

Preheat the Oven to 425 Fº. Rinse Thoroughly the Fresh Herbs and clean the Rosemary of the big wood stems.

2

Wash the Potatoes and peel the Carrots, then chop all in ½ inch cubes and lay in a non-stick oven pan.

3

Peel the Shallots but not the Garlic; it will be cooked “In Camicia”, literally “with the shirt”.

4

Add all the Herbs to the pan, dress with about 4 tablespoons of Extra Virgin Olive Oil, season with Salt and Pepper and mix well. Put in the oven for about 45 minutes, and toss around every now and then to check on the crisp factor.

5

When ready, let sit and cool for about 10 minutes before serving; be careful, the potatoes will cool fast on the outside, but the inside will stay very hot for a while, you might want to warn your kids. Enjoy the garlic bites after removing the skin, and share the sweet shallot with your guests.

BOILED VEGETABLES WITH GARLIC AND LEMON DRESSING

1

Wash the Vegetables thoroughly and if you like, remove the thickest stems.

2

Peel the Garlic.

3

Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, then toss in the vegetables and the garlic and cook for 7 minutes. Do not overcook the vegetables; you want the stems to maintain some crunch…if you get distracted it is very easy to pass that perfect cooking point.

4

Remove the greens from the pot and let them sit in a strainer for a few minutes, then move them into a serving dish.

5

Find the boiled cloves of garlic in between the vegetables and press them in a small glass bowl, mix them with Extra Virgin Olive Oil, the juice of ½ a Lemon, salt and Pepper. Mix the dressing well, pour it over the vegetables and serve warm.

Buon Appetito and

Enjoy the last week of 2008!

Debi and Gabriele