Roast pork loin with sage crust & apple bra

Yield: 4 Servings

Measure Ingredient
1 ounce Fresh sage; woody stems re- moved, chopped (1/2 cup)
2 \N Cloves garlic; crushed (or3)
¼ cup Olive oil
¼ teaspoon Black peppercorns; crushed
2 pounds Pork loin, center-cut; boneless
2 cups Veal stock; divided use*
2 mediums Apples, tart; (Granny Smith or Braeburn)
1 tablespoon Olive oil
¼ cup Shallots; chopped
1 ounce Fresh basil leaves; chopped (about 1/2 cup)
¼ cup Calvados apple brandy**
1 tablespoon Cornstarch
\N \N Salt & pepper to taste

* Defatted chicken stock or chicken broth may be substituted for the veal stock. Frozen concentrated stock, which need not be defatted, is sold at some specialty markets. "Perfect Addition" is a line of frozen concentrated stock bases. It has just introduced a veal stock, which isn't yet in full distribution.

**Brandy or Armagnac may be substituted for the Calvados.

1. Combine sage, garlic, ¼ cup olive oil and peppercorns in a shallow glass or other non-metal dish. Place pork loin in dish and pat sage-garlic mixture on all sides. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator at least 8 hours or overnight.

2. Place pork on a rack in a roasting pan. Roast in a preheated 450-degree oven for 15 minutes. Lower oven temperature to 350 degrees and roast until the internal temperature reaches 160 degrees, about 25 to

30 more minutes.

3. Transfer meat to a hot platter. Cover with aluminum foil or place in a warm oven to keep warm. Let meat rest for several minutes before slicing.

4. Meanwhile, add ¼ cup of hot stock to pan. With a fork or a wooden spoon, scrape up browned bits from bottom of pan. Skim off fat. Pour drippings into a cup.

5. To make the sauce: Core apples, but do not peel them. Chop into 1-inch cubes. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a medium saucepan. Add shallots and saute over medium heat until lightly browned, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add apples and basil, stirring to combine. Add Calvados.

Raise heat to medium-high. Stand back and ignite sauce with a long match. (Or pour Calvados into a heat-safe ladle and ignite, then pour into pan.) Stir in pan drippings and remaining 1¾ cup veal stock; continue cooking over low heat for 15 minutes to reduce sauce.

Dissolve cornstarch in 2 tablespoons cold water and stir it into the pan. Bring mixture to a full boil. Cook, stirring often, until sauce thickens, about 1 minute. Remove from heat. Season with salt and pepper. Serve immediately alongside pork.

Source: Chef Rene Bajeux of Bistrot Zinc/Cafe Zinc in Chicago; printed in Chicago Sun-Times September 4, 1996

Similar recipes