Peach Glazed Pork Loin with Farro and Arugula Salad

I was going to wax poetic in today's recipe blog about Seattle's gorgeous blue sky, but it looks like Mother Nature has thwarted me by covering the sky with that signature Seattle overcast. Not to worry though, because honestly that's one of the great qualities of the Pacific Northwest - somehow it's just as striking under grey skies as it is under blue.
Fortunately, this week's turn of the weather doesn't affect the availability of fresh, summer fruit, peaches in particular, which is the focus of this week's recipe. Pork is one of the best meats to pair with fruit because of its lighter flavor and the addition of a  farro salad adds a great texture a nutritional boost to the whole dish.

Peach-glazed Pork with Farro and Arugula Salad
Makes 4 servings

BRINE:
2-1/2 pints warm water
3 Tbsp plus 1 tsp kosher salt
2 Tbsp plus 1 tsp Maximus/Minimus Seasoning

3.5 lbs pork tenderloin (about 2 loins), trimmed and each loin cut into 2 pieces

Peach Glaze (recipe follows)

GRILLED PEACHES:
1/2 Tbsp canola oil
1 tsp white balsamic vinegar
Pinch kosher salt
2 fresh peaches, ripe but still firm

Farro and Arugula Salad (recipe follows)

To make the brine, add the salt and seasoning to the warm water. Stir until the spices have dissolved. Add the pork to the brine, making sure to fully submerge. Let sit in the brine for six to ten hours. Make sure not to brine the pork longer than ten hours.

Preheat the oven to 425°F.

Prepare the grill by oiling it and heating it to medium-high. Place the tenderloin in the center of grill and let cook for 15 minutes or until the internal temperature is 140, turning it over in the middle of cooking. Remove from the grill, place in a baking dish and cover it generously with Peach Glaze, reserving about 4 tablespoons of the glaze. Finish cooking the pork in the oven for 5 minutes or until the internal temperature reads 145°F. Let rest for 5 minutes.

To prepare the peaches, combine the oil, vinegar and salt and set aside. Cut approximately 12 to 16 slices from the peaches and toss in the vinegar mixture.

Prepare the grill by oiling it and heating it to low. Cook the peaches directly on the grill for 4 minutes or until the peaches are nicely caramelized but not overly soft. Set aside.

To plate the dish, divide the farro salad between 4 plates. Smear a little of the reserved Peach Glaze on the plate. Slice each cut of pork into about 5 pieces and place next to the salad. Place the peach slices next to the pork.

Peach Glaze
1/2 cup peach marmalade
2 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1/3 tsp minced fresh garlic
1/3 tsp finely chopped fresh thyme
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
1/3 tsp white balsamic vinegar
Pinch kosher salt
1 tsp lime juice

Combine all of the ingredients in a bowl and whisk until well blended. Adjust for seasoning.


Farro and Arugula Salad
1 cup farro
2 cups cold water
3-1/2 tsp kosher salt
2 tsp canola oil

FENNEL
2/3 lbs red onion, medium size, cut into 1-1/2 inch chunks (about 1-1/2 red onions)
2-1/2 tsp canola oil
1/2 tsp kosher salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper

RED ONION
2/3 lb fresh fennel bulb, stems on but fronds removed, cut into 1-1/2 inch chunks (about 1-1/2 bulbs)
2 Tbsp canola oil
1/2 tsp kosher salt
Pinch freshly ground black pepper

1/2 jalapeno, veins & stems removed, very thinly sliced into 1/2 inch long pieces
1/2 cup fresh corn kernels, uncooked
1 cup fresh arugula leaves, leaves torn in half
1/4 cup Champagne Vinaigrette*

To cook the farro, combine the farro, water, salt and oil in a wide, shallow braising pan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, cover with a lid slightly askew and let cook for about 20-30 minutes or until the farro is al dente. Strain the farro to remove excess water, pour onto full sheet pan and let cool. (Note: the farro can be made in advance and stored in a refrigerator until the dish is assembled.)

Preheat a convection oven to 425°F.

Toss the fennel and red onion with corresponding oil and seasoning amounts. Place each on its own sheet pan (2 pans if necessary to avoid overcrowding) and roast until soft and lightly caramelized. Set aside to cool. (Note: You can combine the vegetables and roast them together on one sheet.)

Combine the cooled farro, roasted vegetables, jalapeno, and corn in a very large bowl and thoroughly combine. Toss with the arugula and Champagne Vinaigrette. Serve immediately.

*You can buy Champagne Vinaigrette or make your own with the following recipe.

Champagne Vinaigrette
1/2 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp plus 1-1/2 tsp fresh lemon juice
2 Tbsp plus 1-1/2 tsp orange juice
1 Tbsp plus 1-1/2 tsp champagne vinegar
Pinch freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp kosher salt

Mix ingredients together in bowl and do not emulsify. Note: Use only fresh lemon juice.




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