Sunday, March 14, 2010

Seared Pork Loin with Caramelized Shallot Curry

I do not have a lot of experience cooking meat. I was a vegetarian for 14 years and there is a serious learning curve when it comes to cooking meat. I broke my vigilant vegetarianism because of lamb. How ironic is that? We all know that lamb is, well ... it'd kind of be equally ironic if I ate veal. And, I have.

Meat has a texture like no other. Some people will tell you that portobello mushrooms have a similar texture to ... burgers, maybe? I'm not sure. Marinated portobello mushrooms are a fantastic meat replacer in sandwiches but there is no way you could sink your teeth into the mushroom and emphatically declare it meat. Even if you were blindfolded and a little drunk. Meat, of all kinds, really has a texture like no other. For this reason, I hate beef. The first time I had a steak I chewed and after approximately 3 hours wondered while it was still so damn chewy. This was a good cut of steak, too and it was most definitely not overcooked. Beef weirds me out.

But, this post is not about beef. It is about pork. Delicious, delicious, pork. I tend to like sauces or a significant rub (particularly with lamb) with my meat dishes.

You will be needing:
3 shallots, sliced (maybe four... up to you.)
2 cloves of garlic, minced
tbsp. butter (like usual, it's goat butter.*)
salt and cracked pepper to taste

2 pork loins
apple cider (the cider from Ted Hutton at the Halifax Farmer's Market is utterly brilliant)
dry white wine

1. Heat pan for about 4 minutes on medium heat. When you add your pad of butter it should foam up.

2. Add shallots. Sear them at medium ad the turn down to low. Add a dash of salt and shake it every once in a while to coat. Let caramelize for about 10 minutes. This is the real way to caramelize, slow and steady.

3. The pork should be waiting for you, pert and seasoned. Hike the heat on the pan so you can sear that pork for about 30 seconds on each side. This will lock in all the juices and flavour.

4. To actually cook the pork add the cider and wine. Crack a good amount of pepper and sea salt over the pan and cover. Turn down the heat to low so nothing burns and cook for about 5 minutes.

5. Once the pork is completely cooked remove and allow to rest for about 5 minutes. And, don't be afraid to stick a knife in it to check. You can allow the smallest smidge of pink in your pork. Pork must not be served rare but it should be juicy. Dry meat is no fun for anyone.

6. For this part you will need the Coconut Apple Wonder Sauce prepared. Or not. But it adds such a great dimension. Add about 1/4 cup and reduce.

Spoon the Caramelized Shallot Curry over the pork and drizzle the Wonder Sauce around the pork and through the curry. Make sense? Maybe not. Here's a picture:

Obviously, with 2 pork loins it serves 2. Math is my thing, can't you tell? You can always make your own adjustments. I won't be offended.


  1. The shallot-curry sauce was delicious ... like the best curry gravy ever ...

  2. I didn't even think of it as curry gravy but it totally is!