Monday, August 22, 2011

Grilled Pork Loin with Tuscan Herbs and the Winners to my Giveaway

We often cook a pork roast on the grill, I've made so many different versions of it but my favorite way is to slice it open and stuff it with herbs. I have to admit I never have been good at opening one up properly, I would usually have one side thicker than the other. It wasn't until I saw this video that it finally clicked and I got it! Please go and check it out, it's so easy to do and the end result will be a perfect spiral of herbs.

Speaking of herbs, I was inspired to make my own tuscan herb mix after recently reading Judy's post on porchetta, she spoke about how the butchers at the Central Market in San Lorenzo Tuscany each have their own personal herbal mix that they use for their porchetta usually consisting of a blend of sage, rosemary and salt with some adding in black pepper and fennel. She had a link on her blog which showed her version, and as I was reading it she also linked to David Lebovitz who made his own version as well.

This is a terrific way to use up all your herbs, I happen to have a ton of sage growing and I never know what to do with it, I almost feel guilty just letting it go. I can't explain how good this mix is I can't wait to make more my stash is getting low and now I've become obsessed with it!

There's no real recipe here, it's impossible to be exact, but I took Davids advice using 3 parts sage to one part rosemary, 8 cloves of garlic and 1 tablespoon of salt, I also added lots of black pepper and crushed fennel seeds to mine. The hardest part is picking all the leaves off the rosemary and sage branches, it's time consuming but I did it while I was watching TV and the time went by fast, after that it was a piece of cake! I placed everything into my food processor and pulsed it a few times being careful not to liquefy the mix, then spread it out on a large baking sheet to dry for 3 days.

All the flavors intensify, its the perfect complement to grilled or roasted meats and vegetables.

Figs always go well with pork so I decided to make a very quick Fig and Rosemary Spread using 1lb of dried mission figs** 2tbl of fresh chopped rosemary** zest of 1 orange**1 cup of orange juice**1tbl honey**1/2 cup water**salt and pepper. Place everything in a covered saucepan over medium heat, bring to a boil then simmer about 30 minutes until thick. Strain and reserve liquid, if needed add additional water to the fig liquid to total 3/4 cup. Put fig mixture into a food processor and process until smooth. Store the fig spread in an airtight container, refrigerated. Recipe from Savory Baking

So if you find yourself with leftover pork roast, change it up and make this panini! Crusty bread layered with herby pork, fig, spicy arugula and roasted red pepper, crispy and warm, oozing with fontina cheese! Need I say more??

Thank you for all the wonderful comments and emails I received for my blogiversay, I really appreciated each and every one! My 11 year old granddaughter picked the 4 winners to my giveaway and they are, .... Patrice ... Imbottito ... Fallon ... and ... Maryann S.

Please email me at with your address so I can get it out to you. Thanks again everyone!

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