The only roasted vegetable I ever remember eating as a child was a roast potato. Nowadays they appear in many guises on many menus – roasted Brussels sprouts seem particularly popular. I love the way you can mix so many vegetables together in one dish. You can keep it simple and just toss them in oil and pop them in the oven or you can add some herbs or, in this case, honey and mustard. Most Sundays I cook a roast of some sort and there is nothing better than surrounding the meat with a bunch of vegetables and potatoes and letting them all cook together. It is best if the vegetables are cut to approximately the same size and, depending on what you are roasting them with, to make them larger or smaller pieces (larger if roasting with a whole chicken, smaller if, as in this case when I cooked them with pork chops). Of course you could always roast the vegetables without any meat and they would make a perfect vegetarian dish.
Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees
4 pork chops
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 large clove of garlic – grated
3 oz. carrots – peeled and diced
3 oz. parsnips – peeled and diced
3 oz. beetroot – peeled and diced
3 oz. butternut squash – peeled and diced
3 oz. new potatoes – cut into pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Honey Mustard Sauce
1 tbsp. honey
1 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 tbsp. olive oil
Put the pork chops in a large roasting pan.
Place garlic and vegetables in a large bowl, pour over the oil, season with salt and pepper
and toss well together.
Arrange the veg. around the pork and cook for around 35 minutes until chops are cooked and veg. are tender.
Spoon the honey mustard mixture over the vegetables reserving a little to put on each chop. Stir the veg. so they are evenly coated with the sauce before serving.
Moving on from Umbrian Chicken, here is Tuscan Pork. I ate something like this in a small restaurant in Italy overlooking the wonderfully unspoilt (because it is protected by Unesco) Tuscan countryside.
Take a tenderloin of pork, pour over some extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with fresh rosemary (bruise rosemary a bit first so smell is released). Roast in oven until cooked.
Take a can of cannellini beans and cook through.
Take a sprig of fresh sage and tear each leaf into small pieces removing them from the vein that runs down the middle. Then take a slice of prosciutto and tear into small pieces (these amounts will be enough for 2 people)
Pour 1/2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil into a small skillet/frying pan and when sizzling add sage and prosciutto and cook until crisp.
Serve slices of pork drizzled with its juices (diluted with hot water) accompanied by the cannellini beans sprinkle with the crisp sage and prosciutto.
Depending on how many people
Pork Tenderloin with a Ginger Tomato Sauce (serves 4)
Tomato and basil, tomato and herbes de Provence, tomato and red pepper flakes – all good combinations. I hadn’t thought about putting tomato and ginger together. It went well with the pork (might make a good soup if diluted with more veg. broth/stock). Mashed potatoes needed to mop up juices!
1 x pork tenderloin – rolled in extra virgin olive oil seasoned with salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1/2 a large onion – chopped
1 large clove of garlic – finely chopped
2 x plum tomatoes – chopped into small pieces
1 tbsp. ginger – grated
1 tbsp. tomato paste
1/2 cups veg. broth/stock
Cook tenderloin – time will vary according to weight
Heat olive oil in a skillet and when sizzling add the onion.
After a few minutes add the garlic.
When onion is softened add rest of the ingredients, bring to boil and simmer for 15 minutes.
Process in food processor.
Slice pork tenderloin and pour over sauce.
Pork Tenderloin Stacks (serves 4)
Dinner party worthy or a good Sunday roast dish. I love the UK tradition of Sunday lunch. Grew up having a Sunday roast – nothing better than a joint with roast potatoes, a couple of veg. + gravy and condiments – mustard, horseradish, mint sauce, red currant jelly, apple sauce, depending on the meat. My parents still have a roast for the 2 of them every Sunday. This recipe came to me, as a lot of my recipes do, as I was walking my dog (while dog walking, I plan my day). I had a pork tenderloin in the freezer from the Farmer’s Market and I always serve it in slices. I thought that I could cut a potato into slices roughly the same size as a slice of pork tenderloin. Then, I thought I could brush the cooked potato with Dijon mustard. Then I thought about a vegetable and came up with a spinach, leek and garlic puree. Icing on cake – drizzle stack with jus/gravy. When I then cooked all this it was SO delicious and different – a real winner and it is not complicated. The spinach/leek puree can be a side dish on its own and served with many different recipes.
Jus/gravy was juices from pork tenderloin + 1/2 glass of wine + some water + juices from spinach/leek mixture.
1 x pork tenderloin – cook according to weight. Rub with extra virgin olive oil and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper before cooking. I placed it on a metal slatted grid above a roasting tray.
1 X large baking potato – rinsed and cut in 1/2 inch slices (2 per person). Keep skin on for extra nutrition.
1/2 glass white wine
Water – if necessary
1 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, seasoned with salt and pepper
2 x cloves garlic – finely chopped
2 x leeks – finely chopped
10 oz. baby spinach – rinsed and drained
If you are going to cook this and serve it immediately versus heat it up you will have to work backward through this recipe.
Pop tenderloin in oven and cook till well cooked, then cut into slices.
Place potato slices in a large skillet and cover with vegetable broth/stock. Bring to boil and simmer until soft but not mushy.
Remove potato slices to a plate, reserve left over broth/stock.
De-glaze pan with 1/2 glass of white wine.
Heat olive oil and when sizzling add leeks and garlic and let soften for a few minutes.
Then add rinsed and drained baby spinach (the water left on the leaves will help wilt the spinach leaves) and cook until spinach is just wilted.
Process leek/spinach mixture in food processor (any juice left should be added to jus/gravy + water if needed for jus/gravy).
Assemble food – slice of potato spread with Dijon mustard, slice of pork, spoonful of leek/spinach puree, spoonful of jus/gravy drizzled over – 2 of these per person.
Pork Tenderloin with Apple, Beetroot and Prunes (serves 6)
New recipes just pop into my head and it is a lot of fun figuring out how to make them and the right amount of ingredients and then waiting until it is ready and hoping it tastes good. This is an unusual combo of fruit and veg. but it works and the colors are autumnal. It cooks like a one-pot dish as I placed the pork tenderloin on a rack above the veg. To make a gravy/jus I added 1/2 cup of red wine 15 minutes before the end of cooking. I served the dish with a potato rosti (oh, so yum – that’s a recipe for another day)
1 x pork tenderloin + oil for greasing
2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
2 x Granny Smith apples – peeled and cut into 8 pieces
3 x beetroot – peeled and cut into 8 pieces
18 prunes (Paul Newman brand)
1/2 cup red wine
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Oil and season the pork tenderloin and place on a rack.
Place 2 tbsp. oil in a large mixing bowl and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper
Peel apples and beetroot and cut into pieces and put in mixing bowl along with prunes.
Toss well so all ingredients are coated in oil.
Place in a baking tray.
Cook pork and veg. for 45 minutes or so until tenderloin is cooked (obviously depends on size of tenderloin). Remove tenderloin from oven and let stand.
Add wine to veg and cook a further 15 minutes.
Pork, Apricot and Pistachio Muffins (makes approx. 12)
Am rather proud of this invention – tastes good, looks good, can be eaten hot as a main course or cold with a salad, fantastic for picnics and if made into mini muffins are perfect for hors d’oeuvres. Additionally, the meat and fruit component can be altered – think turkey and cranberries. To top it all, preparation is very easy, especially if you buy pre-shelled pistachios.
1 oz. shelled pistachio nuts
2 oz. dried apricots
8 oz. ground/minced pork
handful of parsley – finely chopped
1 x egg – beaten
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Oil for greasing muffin tin
Put shelled pistachios and apricots in food processor and process until they are in small chunks.
Place this mixture into a large bowl, add rest of ingredients and mix well together.
Make mixture into balls and place in greased muffin tin (I use a silicone muffin tin which is really non-stick).
Cook for 20 minutes and then turn oven off and leave for a further 10 minutes.
Turn out onto a plate lined with paper towel to absorb any fat and dab top of muffins too.
Pork Tenderloin with Prunes and an Orange Lingonberry Sauce (serves 4)
Pork is one of those meats which goes well with fruit and sweet flavors. This is one of my all-time favorite dishes and is a new take on pork with prunes. Pork tenderloin is the best cut of pork in my opinion. It is tender and quick and easy to cook especially when cut into slices or bite-sized chunks (I have eaten enough dried, tough pork chops in my life). Lingonberries are a staple Swedish fruit and accompany game as a sauce. They are quite tart but sweeter than cranberries. I find Lingonberry jam quite easily in the supermarket. If you can’t find it you could try cranberry sauce or maybe redcurrant jelly. This dish should be served with mashed potatoes or something similar to mop up the juices. I made a potato, parsnip and apple mash which was a great accompaniment.
1 pound pork tenderloin – cut into bite size pieces
1 tbsp. olive oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 large onion – diced
4 oz prunes (Paul Newman brand) – cut in half
Juice of 1 orange
1 cup chicken stock
2 tbsp. lingonberry jam (Felix brand – on label it says Wild Natural Lingonberries)
Heat 1 tbsp. olive oil, salt and freshly ground pepper in a skillet. When sizzling add pork and brown on all sides, then remove from skillet and place on a piece of paper towel on a plate.
Add onion to skillet and cook until softened.
Put the pork back into the skillet, then add the prunes, orange juice, stock and lingonberry jam.
Stir well, bring to boil and them simmer for 20 – 30 minutes.