Monthly Archives: September 2011

Celine’s Citrus Pork Roast

Everytime I talk to my mom, the conversation turns to food.  “I made the best ____ last night!”  “Have you tried_____?”  “I’m going to make the _____ for the party.”  This week, Mom shared a new recipe she saw on TV recently for this super yummy pork roast.  She used a pork tenderloin, I used half a pork roast.  She cooked hers in the oven, I wanted to see how it’d do in a crock pot.  She thought hers was super yummy, mine turned out that way too! 

You’ll be thinking of lots of ways to serve this roast while it cooks and fills your house with a warm, citrusy fragrance.  We decided sliders would be just the ticket.

Marinating is the key to the tender, juicy, citrusy flavor of this roast, so plan on starting this a day ahead of time.

  • 1 pork tenderloin or half a pork roast (I think pork roasts are more moist than tenderloins.)
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup orange juice
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • juice and zest of 2 limes
  • zest of one orange

Place pork roast in a large ziploc bag.  Add sugar, lime and orange zest (when you zest, only get the colored part of the citrus–the white is bitter), and garlic.

Add water, cider vinegar, lime and orange juice.  Seal the bag, mix ingredients with your hands, turning the bag to make sure ingredients are mixed and pork is immersed.  Place bag in a bowl and refrigerate overnight or up to 24 hours.

The next morning, preheat oven to 325F if using the oven, and place the roast in a hot pan with a TBSP or so of olive oil.  Sear on all sides.

Boil the marinade for 5 minutes–watch it carefully, it will boil over!  (Makes a huge mess of your stovetop….just sayin’.)

Place seared roast and marinade into a roasting pan and bake at 325F for 3-4 hours, or into a crock pot and cook on high for 4-5 hours, or on low for 8-9 hours.  Your goal is a roast that falls apart easily.

Mom said her marinade turned really dark and molasses-like cooking in the oven.  Mine darkened a bit, but was not thick.  Remove the pork from the marinade and pull it, using two forks.  Remove any bones or fat.  (You could also slice it if you’d rather.)

Now you can serve it however you want!  We decided sliders would be yummy.  The slightly sweet, citrusy flavor of the pork was uber-yummy on little Hawaiian rolls with a schmear of grainy mustard, red onion and a spoon or two of the marinade poured over the meat.  Served with a dill pickle–slider nirvana! 

While it was cooking, it had an aroma that reminded me of Thai flavors.  I’m thinking the meat could be combined with some of the marinade, some coconut milk, red pepper flakes, a bit of curry and some cilantro…..oh yeah, that could be yummy!  What will you create with this tender citrusy pork?

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Filed under comfort food, crock pot, dinner, lunch, Potluck, recipe

Zucchini Gratin with Goat Cheese

In French, that would be “Tian de courgettes au chevre.”  How Provencal, eh?  My friend Cirrue shared this recipe with me from one of her Provencal cookbooks, along with a couple others coming soon to a blog near you!  Cirrue knew about my zucchini…ahem…problem; that is, I have A LOT of zucchini this year, and shared some uber-gourmet ways to enjoy it. (Thanks, Cirrue!)

I also was able to brush off some of my zucchini abundance on a friend, with a copy of this recipe–something to think about if you, too, have tons and tons of zucchini.  Zucchini is better received with a yummy way to deal with it!  

Oh the cheesy, garlicky wonderfulness of this yummy gratin:

Did I mention this recipe uses up 2(!) medium-large zucchini? If you’re feeding a crowd, I’d double the recipe.  This was enough for dinner for 3 plus a wee bit leftover for my lunch the next day.  I ate it cold from the fridge; it was spectacular cold!  Ready to make some for yourself?  Run to the garden and get a couple zucchini before they get any bigger and some herbs.

  • 2 pounds zucchini, thinly sliced or coarsely grated (2 medium-large zucchini.  If you use a large, Moby-sized zucchini, seed it first.)
  • salt
  • 2 TBSP olive oil
  • freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced or put through a press
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/4 cup slivered fresh basil
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 cup (2 oz) fresh goat cheese (I used garlic oil-marinated goat feta.)
  • 2 TBSP fresh or dry bread crumbs (I used Panko.)

Preheat oven to 400F.  Oil a 2 qt gratin pan (or any shallow 2 qt oven-safe pan). 

Place the zucchini in a colander.  Add 1-2 TBSP salt, stir, and let sit for 15-20 minutes over a bowl or in a sink.  The salt will draw some of the water out of the zucchini.

Rinse and gently squeeze out the moisture. 

Heat 1 TBSP oil in a large non-stick skillet over medium heat.  Add the zucchini, salt and pepper to taste.  Cook, stirring, for about 10 minutes.  Add garlic and continue to saute, stirring, for an additional 5 minutes.

Stir in parsley and basil and remove from heat.

Beat together the eggs and goat cheese.

Add zucchini and stir to coat. Adjust seasonings if necessary.

Transfer to the gratin dish.  Sprinkle with bread crumbs and drizzle on the remaining oil.

Bake for 20-30 minutes until the top is browned and the mixture is sizzling.

Let stand a couple of minutes.  Serve hot or room temperature (or cold!).  I thought a slice of toast and some fresh tomatoes would be yummy accompaniments.

I found 6 more zucchini in the garden this morning.  I’m craving some more of this gratin!  Louise, the friend who was kind enough to take a couple zucchini off my hands, added more eggs, used gruyere instead of goat cheese, and turned this recipe into a breakfast frittata!  So, so yummy!

How do you say yummy in French?

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Filed under comfort food, dinner, Garden produce, lunch, recipe, Vegetarian

Sweet-Tooth Saturday: Double Chocolate Oatmeal Zucchini Cookies

What possessed me to designate Saturday for sweets?!  Lately, Saturdays have been way to busy to blog.  My excuse this week?  Jazz Aspen Snowmass!  Yup, got to see Ryan Bingham and the Dead Horses, Rodrigo y Gabriela and Steely Dan in this glorious locale:

So, being a long weekend, perhaps we have two Saturdays, today being the second of them.  🙂 

Last week , my friend Judith had a birthday AND agreed to work the afternoon of her birthday so I could get to a meeting at Mr17’s school.  I just had to do something nice for her, right?  As always, I was also looking for ways to use up zucchini.  The two motivations came together in this lovely, gooey, cakey cookie full of chocolatey yumminess!  (For some reason, the link-y thingie in my editor is not working, so here’s the link to the original recipe, old-school-style:

I decided to go for greatness by adding chocolate chips to this already yummy recipe.  Unfortunately, I’ve lost the picture of the ingredients.  This pic of the final product will have to do:

Oh, yeah, now that’s the ticket!  You’ll need:

  • 1/2 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1/4 cup cocoa
  • 3 cups rolled oats (The original recipe calls for quick oats, I used old-fashioned oats.  Quick oats provide a better texture, old-fashioned give a more no-bake cookie texture.)
  • 1 cup shredded zucchini
  • 1 cup chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350F.  Line two cookie sheets with parchment paper or silpats.

Whisk together flour, cocoa, soda, salt, cinnamon.  Set aside.

In a stand mixer with a paddle blade (or electric mixer), cream sugars and butter and oil.

Add egg and vanilla.  Beat until thoroughly combined.

Add dry ingredients, a bit at a time to the wet.  Scrape down sides of bowl as needed.

Add oats and beat until evenly distributed.

Finally add zucchini and chocolate chips.

Drop onto cookie sheets.  I used a 1 TBSP cookie scoop, because that’s what I own; original recipe used a 2 TBSP scoop. 

 Bake for 10-11 minutes (Longer if  you used a bigger scoop–up to 14 minutes for a 2 TBSP scoop), until center of cookie no longer looks wet.  Cool on pans 10 minutes before removing.

Using the small scoop, I got nearly 5 dozen perfectly sized bites of chewy, gooey chocolate zucchini nirvana.

Unfortunately, I just can’t get enough of these cookies. One leads to another–they’re small, y’know?  And then another–really, if I used a bigger scoop those two cookies would have been the equivalent of only one…. and so on….

Right after I made these, I was watching Food Network and Anne Burrell made oatmeal cookies and sprinkled a bit of sea salt on top before they baked.  I LOVE salted chocolate, so next time I bake these, I’m so doing the salt-sprinkle thing!  Mmmm-mmmm-mmmm-yummy!!!

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Filed under comfort food, dessert, Garden produce, recipe, Uncategorized