We recently had my sister and her fiance over for dinner, and I wanted to make something special. I had just gotten two new Pastry Queen cookbooks. and I first looked there for inspiration. I came across this recipe for rubbed pork and had a feeling it would be a winner. I love cooking pork, and this was a spice combination I had never tried before. The combination of the chili powder and the honey was delicious and had a perfect spicy-but-sweet flavor. Searing the pork beforehand also gave it lots of flavor on the outside and made sure it was nicely browned. The pork does need to be marinated the day before, but the day of is quite simple, and while the pork is baking, you can prepare the rest of the meal.
This was my first time making a chutney to go with the meat, and I’m totally sold on this recipe. I liked the combination of apples and pears, and it was a good recipe to use seasonal flavors and ingredients. For the chutney, I skipped the dried cherries and used dried cranberries instead. I’ll definitely use this recipe again. It was a great mix of savory and sweet flavors. I served this meat along with black-eyed peas and mashed potatoes, and it was a definite hit!
Spice-Rubbed Pork with Apple Pear Chutney
Source: Pastry Queen Christmas by Rebecca Rather
1 boneless pork loin roast (5 to 6 pounds)
One 12-ounce can or bottle bock beer (I skipped this, but I’m sure it would make this even better!)
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup freshly squeezed lime juice
3 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper
2 tablespoons canola oil for searing
Apple Pear Chutney, recipe follows
Resist the urge to trim any visible fat from the pork loin. The fat will help keep the pork moist as it roasts. In a large resealable plastic bag, combine the beer, olive oil, lime juice, Worcestershire sauce, and honey. Gently submerge the pork in the marinade, seal the bag, and place in a large bowl or baking pan. Refrigerate overnight or for up to 24 hours. Remove the pork from the marinade and pour the marinade into a large measuring cup. Combine the chili powder, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. Rub it evenly over the pork.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large sauté pan, heat the oil over high heat. Place the roast in the sauté pan and sear until the meat is evenly browned, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Transfer the pork to a large roasting pan, and pour half the reserved marinade around the roast (Do not pour it over the roast, or it may wash away some of the chili rub).
Bake for about 45 minutes, then add the rest of the marinade to the bottom of the pan. Bake another 45 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of the roast registers 140 to 145 degrees, for a total time of about 1 ½ hours (your thermometer will be a more accurate measure of when it’s done than the time!). Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing.
Apple Pear Chutney
½ cup whole pecans
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 yellow onion, chopped
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
1 clove garlic, minced
2 pounds unpeeled pears, cored and coarsely chopped
1 unpeeled Granny Smith apple, cored and coarsely chopped
Juice of 1 lime
1 cup good-quality white wine vinegar
½ cup granulated sugar
½ cup firmly packed brown sugar
½ teaspoon kosher salt
¼ cup dried cherries
2 tablespoons dried cranberries (optional)
1 tablespoon brandy
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Arrange the pecans on a rimmed baking sheet in a single layer and toast in the oven for 7 to 9 minutes , until darker in color and aromatic. Remove from the oven, let cool, and chop coarsely.
In a large, heavy saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium to medium-low heat. Add the onion, ginger, and garlic and sauté for about 5 minutes, until the onion is translucent. (Do not let it brown). Stir in the pears, apple, lime juice, vinegar, sugars, salt, cherries, cranberries, and brandy. Bring to a boil,, reduce the heat to medium-low, and simmer, uncovered, for about 1 hour, until the chutney is thickened, most of the vinegar has been absorbed, and the juice has a syrupy consistency. Remove from the heat and let cool, then stir in the toasted pecans. To store, cover and refrigerate for up to 1 week.
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