Thursday, December 27, 2007

Pork Loin Braised in Milk with Porcini Mushrooms

It is so interesting how your tastes in food change over the years. When I was growing up, I didn’t care for pork. I don’t mean sausage or bacon, I loved that…I just didn’t like the other parts of pork.. pork roasts or pork chops. My brother LOVED pork chops. His favorite was rib chops smothered in Campbell's Cream of Mushroom Soup and baked until they fell off the bone. I am, and always have been, diametrically opposed to Cream of Mushroom Soup. I apologize to all the people who can’t live without it in their kitchens, it’s just not something I keep around or even consider eating. Pork chops in Cream of Mushroom Soup? Ewww. Pork chops cooked in a whitish sauce for about an hour or so. Not for me.

I have become fascinated by pork. Boneless. I think it’s because I have been reading a lot of French and Italian cookbooks and I keep going back to one particular way of cooking it. Pork Loin Roast Braised in Milk. It’s interesting for two reasons. Numero uno is the fact that we don’t drink milk. We don’t keep it in the house. The other reason, those pork chops from days gone by that my brother loved. No mushrooms were involved in the recipes I had been reading, but the sauce brings back memories of our mom’s kitchen and those pork chops cooking away.

After studying this recipe for a week or so, I decided to try Anthony Bourdain’s recipe from his Les Halles Cookbook with a bit of an addition. I don’t think I’ll be disappointed. And if it works..I might call baby bro to see if he‘s hungry.

Roti de porc au lait adapted from Anthony Bourdain’s Les Halles Cookbook
which became
Boneless Pork Loin Roast Braised in Milk with Porcini Mushrooms

3 pound boneless pork loin roast
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbsp butter
1 large onion, chopped
1 carrot, diced
1 leek, white part only, chopped
3 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed and chopped
1 tbsp all purpose flour
2 cups whole milk
Bouquet Garni…1 bay leaf, several sprigs fresh thyme, several sprigs fresh Italian parsley or 1-½ tsp Penzey’s bouquet garni and 1 bay leaf
1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms, blanched in boiling water for 5 minutes, strained and patted dry, then chopped

In a Dutch oven, heat olive oil. Season the pork with coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper on all sides. Put in hot oil and brown on all sides.
This should take about 5-7 minutes total. Take pork out of pan and put on platter. Add a bit more olive oil and when hot, add carrot, onion, leek and garlic
and stir over medium high heat until soft and fragrant, about 10 minutes. While you are stirring, sprinkle the flour over and cook about 3 minutes and then add the milk and the bouquet garni.
Bring to boil and cook over high heat about five minutes. Put the pork back in the pan and juices from the platter. Reduce the heat to simmer and cover.
Cook over low heat for about an hour. I checked this about every 15 minutes or so, turned the pork and scraped the bottom of the pan. The sauce will start to turn a fabulous nutty color. I took my little roast’s temperature and when it reached about 125-130 I took it out and set it aside for 15 minutes.
Take out the bouquet garni and put a small strainer over a small saucepan and put the sauce into the strainer with. Squish with the back of a ladle to get the liquid into the saucepan. Add the tablespoon of butter and the mushrooms to the sauce and any juices that are lurking around the pork as it sits. Bring to a boil, turn heat down and adjust the seasoning as necessary. Slice that bad boy and either arrange on a platter or a plate with a bit of the sauce. All we wanted was a spicy green salad with a bit of a tarragon/champagne vinaigrette. This was an exceptional meal.
Serves 4 generously.



cook eat FRET said...

this sounds truly delicious. i gotta get that book. i am in love with anthony... but don't tell anyone...

Mary Coleman said...

This takes pork to a whole new level. i'm crazed for anthony myself. i won't tell if you won't!

Antonia said...

This looks superb - I've been reading a lot of recipes that suggest cooking pork in milk recently. And also some interesting ones for whole chickens pot-roasted with milk. I must give them a try.
Pleased you found my blog so that I could discover yours!