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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (23)

This was a special Easter for Steve and me, it was our 10th one together. I wanted to make it extra special so I made my Garlic And Fennel Bone-In Pork Loin. Served Family-style with my Garlic Roasted Potatoes With Sautéed Peppers and Lemon Pepper Asparagus. 

I’ve made links to my other two recipes available at the bottom of this post.

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (24)

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (21)

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (25)

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (1)

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (10)

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Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (15)

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (16)

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (24)

Fennel And Garlic Bone-In Pork Loin (1)

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Inactive Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 2 hours 10 minutes
Yields: 4 servings (@ 2 chops per person)
Equipment: Roasting pan with a rack, food processor, plastic meat cutting board, Chef’s knife, whisk, large glass measuring cup

Ingredients:
1 5-pound bone-in pork loin, bones French cut
6 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1/3 cup of rosemary leaves, chopped
2 tablespoons of lemon zest (2 lemons)
2 tablespoons fennel seeds
2 tablespoons of Creamy Caesar dressing
1 heaping tablespoon of Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of freshly ground black pepper

Ingredients For Pan Gravy:
1/4 stick of unsalted butter
1/2 cup of all-purpose flour
3 1/2 cups of unsalted chicken broth
1/4 cup (4 tablespoons) of the pan drippings
2 tablespoons of Italian flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400-degrees F.
Note: Pork loin needs to be at room temperature. Allow the meat to sit out for 30 minutes before cooking.

Place the pork, fat side up, in a roasting pan just large enough to hold it comfortably. In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, process the garlic, rosemary, and fennel seeds until roughly chopped. Add the Caesar dressing, olive oil, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper until it becomes a smooth paste. Transfer the mixture to a small mixing bowl, add the lemon zest, mix to combine.

Rub the mixture all over the top of the pork and roast for 1 to 1 hour and 15 minutes, or until the internal temperature is between 140 and 145-degrees F. Remove from the oven, transfer to a meat-safe cutting board and cover tightly with foil. Allow the pork to rest for 30 minutes. Slice between the bones and serve immediately.

While the pork is resting start the pan gravy.
Carefully pour the hot liquid from the roasting pan through a mesh sieve into a measuring cup. This will allow you to see how many pans dripping liquid you have.

Place the roasting pan on top of the stove on medium-high heat. Add the butter and allow to melt. Once the butter’s melted, add the flour, whisk to combine until a smooth paste (*roux) forms and is blond in color. Still whisking slowly add the pan drippings and chicken broth, bring to a simmer. Continue to whisk, the *roux will cause the gravy to thicken. Add the parsley, stir to combine. Transfer the gravy to a large glass measuring cup.

*Roux is a 1:2 ratio of fat to all-purpose flour.

 

Garlic Roasted Potatoes With Sauteed Peppers

 

Lemon Pepper Asparagus

 

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Garlic Roasted Potatoes With Sauteed Peppers

Roasted Potatoes With Red Peppers And Garlic (1)

I think it’s just the English in me that always wants to make roasted potatoes. My Garlic Roasted Potatoes With Sautéed Peppers are so delicious you’ll want seconds. Let me show you how easy this dish is to make.

Garlic Roasted Potatoes (1)

Garlic Roasted Potatoes (2)

Roasted Potatoes

Roasted Potatoes With Red Peppers And Garlic (4)

Roasted Potatoes With Red Peppers And Garlic (6)

Roasted Potatoes With Red Peppers And Garlic (9)

Roasted Potatoes With Red Peppers And Garlic (1)

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 10 minutes
Yields: 4 to 6 servings
Equipment: large mixing bowl, 2 rimmed baking sheet pan, 12-inch sauté pan

Ingredients:
3 pounds of small white potatoes, quartered
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 orange bell pepper, diced
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 cloves of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons of fresh rosemary, minced

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400-degrees F.
Cut the potatoes in quarters, smaller ones in half, and mince the garlic. Place the potatoes into a large mixing bowl with olive oil, Kosher salt, fresh ground black pepper, and minced garlic, toss until potatoes are coated really well.  Transfer the potatoes to two baking sheets divided equally and spread out into one layer. Roast the potatoes for 45 minutes to 1 hour.

Important: Fifteen (15) minutes into the roasting process, using a spatula, move the potatoes around to prevent them from sticking to the pan. Flip the potatoes twice more during cooking in order to ensure they brown evenly on both sides.

While the potatoes are roasting, dice the bell peppers. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large sauté pan on medium-high heat. Add the diced peppers to the pan and cook for 3 to 5 minutes or just until soft.

Turn the oven off.
Remove the potatoes from the oven, add the sautéed bell peppers, divided equally, to each pan of roasted potatoes. Sprinkle the freshly chopped rosemary over all the potatoes.

Note: If you need to keep the potatoes warm, place them back into the hot oven until you’re ready to serve.

 

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Tuscan Chicken In A Concord Grape Reduction With Sweet Figs

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This has to be one of my favorite chicken dishes ever! Chef Michael Chiarello inspired me to make this recipe after seeing him do it on television. The name sounds really fancy, but the dish is not hard to make.

There are a few steps that need to be followed and none of them are hard to do.  I would have like to used fresh figs, as he did, but they weren’t in season at the time. I used dried figs and reconstituted them. I’ll tell you how I did this in a minute.

I’m starting with the spice rub for the chicken.

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To make the spice rub for the chicken was to take fennel and coriander seeds and place them into a spice grinder. Then I poured the spices into a bowl. Next, add ground white pepper to the bowl and combine. That’s the spice rub

For the chicken, Have your butcher remove the bone from four skin-on chicken breasts. Season both sides of the chicken with Kosher salt first. Then I sprinkled a good amount of the spice rub on both sides, carefully, under the skin as well.

In a large pan, preheated on medium-high heat, carefully add olive oil. Place the chicken, in the pan, skin side down. Cook the chicken for about 4 minutes, turn the chicken over and cook another 4 minutes. Transfer the pan right into a preheated 350-degree F. oven for another 20-25 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165-degrees F.

Once the chicken comes out of the oven, transfer the chicken onto a large plate. Cover the chicken with foil to stay warm. Start on the sauce.

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Take Concord grapes, place them into a large plastic zip-lock bag, and with your hands, crush all the grapes to release their juices. Once all the grapes are crushed,  place a large bowl underneath a fine mesh sieve. Pour the grapes and their juice into the sieve allowing the juices fall into the bowl, (I used my hands to crush any grapes I may have missed in the bag to release as much juice as possible). This process takes about 15 minutes and yields 2 cups of grape juice.

In a large saucepot add 4 cups of organic apple juice. To that add the dried figs along with a 1/4 cup of granulated sugar. Give a quick stir, turn the heat to medium-high. Bring the figs up to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and let this simmer for 30 minutes. This allows the figs to reconstitute and plump up.

Using a slotted spoon, fish all the figs out of the poaching liquid and let them cool for 5 minutes. Once cooled, remove all the stems and cut the figs into quarters.

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Getting back to the chicken, I have the sautèpan with the chicken dripping still in the bottom. On medium-high heat, add the finely diced red onion (1 whole dice shallot would be fine too), to the hot pan. Sauté the onions until they are soft and translucent, 1-2 minutes. Sprinkled Kosher salt and black pepper to taste. Next, add two sprigs of fresh rosemary. This will add depth of flavor to the sauce.

As the pan is bubbling,  pour in the fresh grape juice and unsalted chicken broth. With the heat still on medium-high, allow the sauce to come up to a bubble then reduce the heat to low simmering for another 5-7 minutes. Remove rosemary sprigs.

Next, add the quartered reconstituted figs to the grape reduction. Swirl the pan around letting the figs swim and absorb all that flavor. Season with a light sprinkling of Kosher salt. Turn the heat off.

This amazing sauce with figs is ready to be poured into the bottom of a large deep serving dish. Lay the seared chicken on top. Spoon the sauce along with the figs over the chicken.

I like to serve this Tuscan chicken with a simple arugula salad,  dressed with a lemon vinaigrette and shavings of Parmesan cheese. Also, a side of sautéed lemon pepper seasoned asparagus and a garnish of concord grapes.

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Prep Time: 35 minutes
Total Cooking Time: 45-50 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Equipment: large sautèpan, saucepot, large deep-sided serving platter

Ingredients:
4 boneless skin-on chicken breasts
3 tablespoons of olive oil
1 tablespoon Fennel seeds, ground
1 tablespoon Coriander seeds, ground
1 teaspoon of white pepper
1 tablespoon Kosher salt

Reconstituting Dried Frigs:
4 cups organic apple juice
1 package dried black mission figs
1/4 cup granulated sugar

Concord Grape Reduction With Sweet Figs:
1/4 cup of granulated sugar
1/2 a finely diced red onion ( 1 whole diced shallot)
Reconstituted  black mission figs, stems removed and quartered, yields about 2 heaping cups (if available, 2 pints of fresh black mission figs, stems removed, quartered)
6 pints of concord grapes (reserve some for garnish) yields 2 cups of juice
2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
1/2 cup of unsalted chicken broth
Kosher salt to taste
Note: If fresh Concord grapes are not available, substitute 2 cups Welch’s Concord grape juice.

Sides:
1 package of arugula
1 pound fresh asparagus
Parmigiano-Reggiano, garnish for salad

Directions:
For the chicken, Have your butcher remove the bone from four skin-on chicken breasts.

Start out by making the spice rub for the chicken. To make the spice rub for the chicken was to take fennel and coriander seeds and place them into a spice grinder. Then I poured the spices into a bowl. Next, add ground white pepper to the bowl, stir to combine. That’s the spice rub.

Season both sides of the chicken with Kosher salt first. Then I sprinkled a good amount of the spice rub on both sides, carefully, under the skin as well.

Once the chicken breasts are seasoned, start poaching the figs in the poaching liquid.

In a large saucepot start with organic apple juice. Add the dried figs along with granulated sugar. Give a quick stir, turn the heat to medium-high. Bring the figs up to a boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and let simmer for 30 minutes. This allows the figs to reconstitute and plump up.

Using a slotted spoon, fish all the figs out of the poaching liquid and let them cool for 5 minutes. Once cooled, remove all the stems and cut the figs into quarters.

Note: It’s a good idea to do this step in advance if possible.
Take Concord grapes, place them into a large plastic zip-lock bag, and with your hands, crush all the grapes to release their juices. Once all the grapes are crushed,  place a large bowl underneath a fine mesh sieve. Pour the grapes and their juice into the sieve allowing the juices fall into the bowl, (I used my hands to crush any grapes I may have missed in the bag to release as much juice as possible). This process takes about 15 minutes and yields 2 cups of grape juice.

Preheat the oven to 350-degrees F. Start dicing the onion for the sauce.

In a large pan, preheated on medium-high heat, carefully add olive oil. Place the chicken, in the pan, skin side down. Cook the chicken for about 4 minutes, turn the chicken over and cook another 4 minutes. Transfer the pan right into a preheated 350-degree F. oven for another 20-25 minutes or until the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165-degrees F.

While the chicken is in the oven, the figs should be ready to come out of the poaching liquid. Let the figs cool for about 5 minutes then remove the stems and cut them into quarters.

When the chicken comes out of the oven, place them onto a plate and cover with foil. Use the same sautèpan to make the grape reduction. Be Careful because the handle of the pan is very hot.

On medium-high heat, add in the 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary and the diced onions to the chicken dripping that is still in the pan. Sautè until translucent. Add in the grape juice and unsalted chicken broth. Once it comes up to a boil, reduce to a simmer for 5-7 minutes and then add quartered reconstituted figs. Finally, a light sprinkling of Kosher salt.

Swirl the figs around in the grape reduction so they absorb that grape flavor for another minute and then turn the heat off.

To Serve: Use a deep-sided serving platter and pour the grape reduction with figs in the bottom of the platter. Lay the pan seared chicken on top. Spoon a little of the sauce and figs over the chicken.

I like to serve this Tuscan Chicken In A Concord Grape Reduction With Sweet Figs with a simple arugula salad,  dressed with a lemon vinaigrette and shavings of Parmesan cheese. Also, a side of sautéed lemon pepper asparagus and a garnish of concord grapes.

Lemon Pepper Asparagus

Homemade Vinaigrette Recipes- Lemon, Balsamic, And Cilantro Lime

Lemon Vinaigrette:
1-8 ounce jelly jar with lid
4 tablespoon or 1/4 cup of freshly squeezed lemon juice ( usually 3 lemons)
1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon of fresh cracked black pepper
1 tablespoon Agave nectar
8 tablespoons or 1/2 cup of extra virgin olive oil E.V.O.O.

Directions:
Place all the ingredients into the jelly jar. Place the lid on tightly and shake.

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Sweet Italian Sausage, Mushroom, And Asparagus Strata

Sweet Italian Sausage, Mushroom, And Asparagus Strata.jpg

Strata just mean a layered casserole. They can be sweet or savory. I guess you could say it’s almost like a type of bread pudding. Anytime I’m looking for a recipe that will feed at least six people my Sweet Italian Sausage, Mushroom And Asparagus Strata is perfect. Not to mention, it’s comfort food in every sense of the word. Let’s start from the beginning…

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I like spinach to keep its beautiful green color, so I immediately remove the pan from the heat. Once the spinach wilts, toss in the chopped thawed asparagus. Remember this dish still has to go into the oven.

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Prep Time: 30 to 40 minutes (time includes the cooking of all the ingredients going into the Strata)
Cook Time: 45 to 55 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 35 minutes
Yields: 6 servings
Equipment: 12-inch sautépan, 9 x 13 baking dish, 2 rimmed baking sheet pans,  1 medium-size mixing bowl, large mixing bowl, Chef’s knife

Ingredients:
unsalted butter for greasing the dish
2 tablespoons of olive oil
1 Fresno chili, seeded and minced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon of fresh thyme leaves
1 pint of sliced button mushrooms
1 tablespoon plus teaspoon Kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper
1 pound of sweet Italian sausage
1 sprig of fresh rosemary leaves, chopped
1 teaspoon of fennel seeds
1 teaspoon of oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 package of fresh spinach leaves
1 package of thawed frozen asparagus cut into 2-inch pieces
1 loaf of Ciabatta bread, cut into 1-1/2 inch cubes and toasted
Dozen large eggs, room temperature
2 cups whole milk, room temperature
1 cup of half-and-half, room temperature
4-ounces grated Gruyere cheese (2 tablespoons for the top)
4-ounces grated Fontina cheese (2 tablespoons for the top)
1/2 cup of Parmigiano- Reggiano cheese (reserve 1/4 cup for the top)

Directions:
Preheat oven to 300-degrees F.
Butter casserole dish for the Strata. Next cut the Ciabatta cubes up into 2-inch cubes, spread them out on sheet pans and bake for 20 minutes or until dry at 300 degrees. While the bread is in the oven start the filling.

On medium heat, add the olive oil to a large sautépan. Next, add the Fresno chili and garlic, sauté until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Next, add the sliced mushrooms and thyme leaves. Sauté mushrooms for 5 minutes or until browned. Season with Kosher salt and pepper to taste.

To the pan, add the sweet Italian sausage. Using a wooden spoon, break the sausage up with a wooden spoon. Add the rosemary, fennel seeds, dried oregano, dried thyme, Kosher salt, and fresh ground pepper. Sauté until all the sausage is brown and cooked through, around 10 minutes. Next, add the fresh spinach leaves. Toss the leaves through until just wilted. Remove the pan from the heat. Add in the thawed chopped asparagus pieces and toss those through. Set the filling aside.

For the bread, I used a Ciabatta. Slice the Ciabatta then cut into 2-inch cubes. Place the cubes onto two rimmed sheet pans. Spread the cubes out into one even layer. Bake for 20 minutes or until bread cubes become dry and style-like. Let the bread cubes cool for 10 minutes.

Adjust oven temperature to 350-degrees F.

Start the custard by adding to medium-size mixing bowl the eggs, milk, grated cheeses, Kosher salt, and fresh ground black pepper, whisk until combined.

In another large mixing bowl add the sausage mixture and cooled bread cubes. Gently toss to combine. Pour the custard over the sausage and bread cubes.

Gently fold the ingredients with the custard. Allow the mixture to sit for around 10 minutes giving the bread cubes a chance to absorb the custard, or at least most of it. In the meantime, butter the baking dish really well. This will make it easier for the strata to come out later.

Mix this all through really well and let sit for around 10 minutes so the bread can absorb all that liquid, or at least most of it. In the meantime butter, a 9 x 13 baking dish really well. This will make it easier for the strata to come out later.

Mix this all through really well and let sit for around 10 minutes so the bread can absorb all that liquid, or at least most of it. In the meantime get a deep casserole dish and lightly butter it all over. This will make it easier for the strata to come out later.

After the 10 minutes, pour the mixture into the buttered baking dish and sprinkle the reserved cheese over the top. Drizzle (around a 1/4 cup) of olive oil all over the top to ensure the bread browns evenly.

Bake for 45 to 55 minutes or until you can see no more liquid coming up on the sides or up through the center. Once a wooden skewer comes out clean, the dish is done. The Strata should be nice and golden brown on the top.

Allow the Sweet Italian Sausage, Mushroom, And Asparagus Strata to rest for 20 minutes before cutting.

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