Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Pecan pork with balsamic onions and pears

Preparation Time 25 minutes
Cooking Time 90 minutes

Ingredients (serves 6)
* 1 x 100g pkt pecan halves
* 105g (1 1/2 cups) fresh breadcrumbs (made from day-old bread)
* 1/3 cup loosely packed fresh continental parsley
* 2 tbs chopped fresh sage
* 2 garlic cloves, crushed
* Salt & freshly ground black pepper
* 1 x 2kg boned rolled loin of pork, string removed
* 1 tbs salt, extra
* Baby spinach leaves, to serve
Balsamic onions & pears
* 4 small (about 100g each) red onions, halved, each half cut into 3 wedges
* 3 (about 200g each) beurre bosc pears, halved leaving stems intact
* 80g butter, melted
* 60ml (1/4 cup) balsamic vinegar
* 70g (1/3 cup, firmly packed) brown sugar

1. Preheat oven to 220°C. Place pecans in the bowl of a food processor and process until coarsely chopped. Add breadcrumbs, parsley, sage and garlic, and process until well combined. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Place the pork, rind-side up, on a clean work surface. Score rind with a knife, crossways, to the fat layer, at 2cm intervals. Turn pork over. Cut a vertical slit into the thick end (do not cut all the way through). Open the thick end to sit flat and place pecan mixture down the centre. Beginning at the thicker end, roll up to enclose filling. Use unwaxed white kitchen string to tie at 2cm intervals. Place pork, rind-side up, in a roasting pan.
3. Rub extra salt into rind cuts. Roast in preheated oven for 25 minutes or until rind crackles. Remove from oven. Reduce oven temperature to 190°C.
4. To make the balsamic onions & pears, combine onion, pear, butter, vinegar and sugar in a large bowl and gently toss to combine. Place the pear mixture, in a single layer, around the pork. Roast in oven for a further 1 hour or until rind is golden and crackled. Remove from oven. Transfer the pork to a plate. Cover with foil and set aside for 5 minutes to rest.
5. Add the spinach leaves to the pear mixture in the roasting pan, and gently toss until combined and spinach wilts. Arrange pear mixture on a platter. Top with pork and drizzle with pan juices. Carve pork into thick slices to serve.

Australian Good Taste - Page 75
Recipe by Ross Dobson & Amanda Kelly


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