I saw this idea in a recent Cooking Light magazine and I must admit, it intrigued me. What?–Chefs can’t get inspired by another’s recipe? Bollix!
I loved the fact that it used ingredients perfect for this time of year and it used something I don’t usually cook with, blackberries. This is seasonal cooking at its best guys.
The original recipe was Grilled Pork with Blackberry Sage Sauce but I decided to take it a step further, transforming the fresh blackberries into a marinade instead. I’m telling you, I was bang on!
As you know, pork has had some bad raps in the past but you can easily work it into your healthy diet with out worrying. The tenderloin is the leanest cut of pork. A 3-ounce serving contains 120 calories and 2.98 grams of total fat, which is as lean as a skinless chicken breast. I will stress that buying organic or grass-fed meat is the way to go here. (More of my research on this to come.) Don’t be afraid of this recipe. It probably looks complicated but it really is super easy.
1 lb Organic or grass fed pork loin
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth (for roasting)
1 lb blackberries
2 shallots – minced
1 tbsp fresh sage – chopped
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp agave (vary this amount depending on how sweet or tart the blackberries are)
1 tbsp lemon zest
1 cup low-sodium chicken broth
Preheat medium saute pan on medium heat. Add 1 tbsp olive oil and saute shallots for 1 minute, stirring. Add everything except broth and simmer for 2/3 minutes until berries start to break down.
Add broth and simmer for 5-6 minutes. Pass the marinade through a sieve retaining the liquid. Discard the contents of the sieve. Let liquid cool completely before adding pork loin to marinate.
Marinate pork from 2 to 6 hours, refrigerated. You could marinade it over night if you wish.
Preheat oven to 420°F.
Either sear on a hot grill or in a hot saute pan. I used the grill to get some added flavor from the charcoal and brilliant grill marks. Sear all sides until nicely browned, 4 min. each side approx. Place seared pork on a foiled oven tray. Add the chicken broth to the tray and pop in the oven for 20 minutes approx or until internal temp. of 165°F. (You probably know this is one on my favourite tricks to keep lean meat moist.) Once cooked, remove and let rest for 10 minutes loosely foiled before carving. This will let the meat relax and the juices redistribute back into the meat.
NOTE: Resting meat after roasting is an important technique and ensures the meat stays juicy.
TIP: I add the broth to the pork while roasting to create some steam in the oven and helps keep the meat moist. I use this technique when cooking lean proteins like pork, chicken or turkey.
I paired my berried pork with glazed baby carrots. DID YOU KNOW? For the best anti-cancer boost you should cook carrots whole? A new study from scientists at Newcastle University found that the anti-cancer properties of carrots are enhanced 25 percent if they are cooked whole rather than chopped up beforehand AND they taste better when cooked this way. It happens to be my favourite way to cook (and eat) carrots so this is great news.
GLAZED BABY CARROTS:
8-10 oz baby carrots
Trim the green tips from the carrots. Place them in a mixing bowl with 1 tsp agave/honey, 1 tsp ground cumin, S&P, drizzle olive oil. Toss together and lay in a single layer on foiled oven tray. Lay a sheet of foil over and pop in oven for about 10 minutes. Easy and delicious.
All recipes are made with the finest quality farmers market whole foods, natural and non-processed ingredients as much as possible.