Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Whisk Wednesdays—Longe de Porc aux Pruneaux (Roast Pork Loin with Prunes)

Longe de Porc aux Pruneaux (Roast Pork Loin with Prunes)Pigs, prunes and potatoes. Not very inspiring. But Longe de Porc aux Pruneaux (Roast Pork Loin with Prunes) is tasty…if you like prunes.

First, you butterfly the pork so that you can shimmy all the prunes in the middle. Then you tie up (and curse while tying) the pork with butcher's twine to keep the prunes in place. After searing the pork with the carrots and onions, you roast it in the oven.

Meanwhile, you steep the prunes in Ceylon tea. {I bet you could steep them in all sorts of flavors such as star anise or cardamom.} Sounds crazy, but it's tasty…if you like prunes!

The key to this dish is the sweet and sour reduction called a gastrique. Basically, it's a caramelized sauce of vinegar and sugar. I think any meat tastes better with a sauce, and pork pairs nicely with something a little sweet balanced by the acidity of the vinegar.

After roasting the pork, set it aside and deglaze the pan with some water. Add the pan juices to the gastrique. Taste and season, et violà, you have a delicious roast pork loin with prunes…if you like prunes.

The second part of this course is the puréed potatoes (which should have been puréed celery root, but I forgot about that ingredient when I was at the grocery store and ended up using my baby potatoes which I just smashed, skin and all).


Serves 6

Longe de Porc aux Pruneaux (Roast Pork Loin with Prunes) and Mousseline de Céleri Rave (Creamed Celery Root Purée) mise en place
For Roast Pork Loin with Prunes:
3-pound boneless pork loin roast, trimmed of excess fat
Salt and fresh ground pepper
1½ pounds prunes, pitted
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 carrot, chopped coarse
1 onion, chopped coarse
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves or ¼ teaspoon dried
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves or ¼ teaspoon dried
1 bay leaf, crushed
2 cloves garlic
Large pinch Ceylon tea
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup vinegar
Small bunch watercress for garnish

For Creamed Celery Root (or Potato) Purée
1¼ pounds celery root (or potatoes)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
¼ cup crème fraîche or heavy cream (or sour cream)
Freshly ground pepper

You can find the recipe for Longe de Porc aux Pruneaux (Roast Pork Loin with Prunes) and Mousseline de Céleri Rave (Creamed Celery Root Purée) in the book Le Cordon Bleu at Home. To see how the rest of the Whisk Wednesdays group fared with their recipe, click here (or check out the sidebar) and then click on each blogger!

Tasting Notes
The light flavor of pork paired perfectly with the prunes hidden inside…if you like prunes, which I do! The sauce lightly drizzled on top added depth, moisture and sweetness to each bite.

I think next time introducing some apricot into the juice would bring an interesting color to the sauce that would complement the prunes and add some zing. In fact, I may also try combining chopped prunes and apricots to stuff the pork, for the same reasons.

Next Class
• Savarin aux Kiwis et aux Fraises (Rum Savarin with Kiwis and Strawberries) pages 409-410

. . . . . . . . . .

Running total: $1,346.91 + $22.00 (pork) + $4.23 (other ingredients) + $3.42 (potatoes) = $1376.56
($4.94 per serving)

Butter used so far: 12 pounds, 6.5 tablespoons

. . . . . . . . . .
::Whisk Wednesdays::
We're cooking our way through a cooking school curriculum using the Le Cordon Bleu at Home cookbook. The "classes" are based on the Le Cordon Bleu curriculum found online and used as a guideline. Not all the items in the curriculum are in the cookbook, but most are. Where the items are not in the book, we try to find a suitable substitution. Find out more here.
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    Manggy said...

    Actually, I'm a fan of dried fruits in general, so I'm sure I'd love this (actually, I made a similar dish, and what was missing was more prunes!). I do like my prunes! :)

    Kayte said...

    Oh, that looks so good. I think apricots would be great in this...I like prunes, but apricots, too would be outstanding, seeped in the The guys would have preferred your potatoes to my celery root but I was happy to get the chance to learn about celery root and I liked it, but then I really like celery and am always looking for ways to put it in things. I will make this roast again...the sauce was perfect! Yours looks wonderful!

    lisa is cooking said...

    Now I'm inspired to make a gastrique. The addition of apricots sounds great.

    Unknown said...

    I like the idea of this recipe a lot but I'm not a fan of prunes. I'll have to think about other things I could stuff inside of the pork. Great photos of your meal!

    Lo said...

    Gorgeous. Simply gorgeous.

    The Ceylon tea concept is brilliant.
    And I'm a huge fan of the lowly (and much overlooked) prune. It's a natural with pork!

    Katerina said...

    You gotta sell it! I though this looked very good, and then your first comment was that it was uninspiring! I still think it looks great though.

    Sippity Sup said...

    beautiful, beautiful, beautiful. It just reminds me that some of these recipes are classics for a reason! GREG

    Sunei said...

    I happen to love prunes and roasted like these are with pork??!! Sounds scrumptious!! The colors in your photo are incredible! Love the action shot!!

    Anonymous said...

    Prunes are such an underused ingredient, don't you think? This looks like a great recipe.

    pigpigscorner said...

    Yes, I like prunes! I love them in savoury dishes actually with pork and lamb.

    Anonymous said...

    Absolutely fabulous shot Shari!! And thank you for defining "gastrique" for me! Oh my gosh! THAT makes sense!! I'm anxious to do this one!

    Monica H said...

    Yum, this looks good...if you like prunes. And I do!

    I just made a pork tenderloin- I love pork!

    Cathy said...

    I was holding my breath throughout the entire post to find out whether you like prunes, and I'm so glad that you do! This looks like a simply divine meal (I like prunes too :-)

    Anonymous said...

    It looks very pretty. I like prunes.

    Sophie said...

    I do like prunes but haven't tried them in a savory recipe like this before -- and steeping them in tea, what a tasty idea!

    Jenn@slim-shoppin said...

    Wow, how fancy!

    I used prunes last week when I was making chocolate muffins. My husband saw me taking them out of the jar and taking the pits out and was like "what are you doing?"

    He wasn't a fan of the prunes! But you can't even taste them in the muffins! I am glad I saw this post, because I wanted to try other things with prunes! Your pictures are amazing!

    Justine said...

    I love prunes and everything in this looks delicious!!

    figtreeapps said...

    I just bought a bag of dried fig..perhaps I could use them instead of the prunes....this dish looks great..Figtreeapps

    katie said...

    i just noticed your running total at the bottom. Butter - hilarious. IT is like when I had to make a wedding cake. It was DISGUSTING the amount of butter utilized.

    Anyways. I have always been intimidated by these types of stuffed loins. Thanks for making it look effortless!

    Baking is my Zen...sweet nibbles for the soul said...

    Love this blog!!!! So much good stuff to see! Wow!

    Justine said...

    This looks so delicious! i recently made chicken with prunes and they add such a nice sweetness. I'm bookmarking this one : ) And thanks for stopping by my site!

    Maris said...

    This looks so good! Sweet dried fruits + savory meat is always a winning combination.

    Thanks for stopping by my blog! :)

    Mermaid Sews said...

    This looks so good. I love your whisk wednesdays.

    nora@ffr said...

    wow shari!! love prunes. perfect for dinner. a must try.. thanx for sharing :)