Thursday, September 06, 2007

Still on the fence when it comes to cumin
--Pork with Paprika and Garlic

Pork with Paprika and Garlic
Williams-Sonoma Savoring Meat and Poultry Copyright 2006

1 boneless pork loin, 2-3 lb or 2 pork tenderloins, about 1 pound each
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 ½ tablespoons finely minced garlic
2 teaspoons dried oregano
2 tablespoons sweet paprika
1 tablespoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves I used dried (about 1 teaspoon)
1 bay leaf, crumbled
1 teaspoon salt, plus salt to taste
½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper, plus pepper to taste
½ cup dry sherry or dry white wine

1. Trim off any excess fat from the pork and place in a shallow nonaluminum container.
2. In small frying pan over low heat, combine the olive oil, garlic and oregano and heat for 2 minutes to release their aromas. Whisk in the paprika, cumin, thyme, bay leaf, 1 teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon pepper, and the wine and cook for 1 minute over low heat. Remove from heat and set aside to cool to room temperature. When fully cooled, pour the marinade over the meat and rub it in well. Cover and refrigerate for at least overnight or for as long as 2-3 days.
3. Prepare a fire in a charcoal grill or preheat the broiler.
4. Lift the pork from the marinade and pat dry. Sprinkle the pork lightly with salt and pepper. Place on the grill rack or on a broiler pan slipped under the broiler and grill or broil, turning as needed to brown well on all sides, until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat reads 147 degrees F, about 10 minutes for the tenderloin and 20 minutes for the loin. Alternatively test the pork by cutting into it with a sharp knife; the meat should be slightly pink at the center.
5. Transfer the pork to a cutting board and let rest for a few minutes. Slice and then arrange the slices on a warmed platter. Serve at once.

Although the day might come when I abandon this blog, I don't think I'll be abandoning meal planning anytime soon. I've really been flying by the seat of my pants this week and I'm not enjoying it. This is the only recipe that I made that I planned to make. Everything else that was planned got pushed aside. I've been scrambling.

Even this planned recipe gave me grief. I usually marinate meat in the morning but about an hour before bedtime I looked at the recipe and saw that not only did it need to marinate longer, the marinade needed to cook and cool first. Oy! I used the rest of the jarred garlic I had on hand to make this since I was in a pinch, knowing it wouldn't be as good. Then I stopped when I noticed that tablespoon of cumin. Cumin is a spice that makes me hesitate outside of chili or Mexican food. I forged ahead with some trepidation.

After all was said and done, this was good, although not the best pork tenderloin recipe I've tried (there have been some really good ones). I'm not sure how I felt about the cumin. It's more the smell that bothers me than the taste. I think I may have enjoyed it more without the cumin only because I wouldn't have been distracted by it.

This cookbook is somewhat on the fancy side but it was cheap (from Ollie's Bargain Outlet), has great photographs, and there are definitely a few recipes I want to try in it.

Blast From The Past: Dari’s Picante Chicken from November 2006. That recipe is from the Biggest Loser Cookbook. The new season of Biggest Loser starts next week!

Question of the Day: Are there any spices that you avoid?


DancesInGarden said...

Not a nutmeg fan here. And sometimes I find cloves can bring out a vinegar type taste when mixed with apples or peaches.

A tbsp of cumin sounds like a LOT of cumin!

Anonymous said...

Hmmmm, I know it's probably not classified as a spice but I'm one of those freaks who don't like garlic. The few times I've put it in a recipe, I've always wished I hadn't so now I just omit it entirely.

I do like cumin but like dances, I think a tbsp sounds like a lot.

Anonymous said...

Curry because my hubby hates it. Molasses and nutmeg because I've had allergy symptoms to both.

I use cumin as directed in Rachel Ray's turkey corn chili recipe, tastes good to me :)

Anonymous said...

i like cumin, even the smell. but that does sound like a lot of it. i dont care for oregano or bay. and i NEVER cook with onion. dont really mind the taste, but the texture is such a turn off for me and my dh.

i like sage, but it smells like mold to me.


Kim said...

OK, I'll say it. Cumin smells like stinky armpits.

I'm not a fan of cilantro either.