Saturday, February 28, 2009

Figgy Pork

The weather is starting to turn, but I needed one more warm, winter dish before it's all said and done. I got the idea from my new favorite food website: The LoveBite ( There was something I didn't like about their figgy roast piggy, so I went looking for another recipe with the same idea. I'm a big fan of cardamom, so this one was perfect. It was a bit labor- and ingredient-intensive, but good for a Sunday evening meal. And I think it would also be good for a holiday, it's festive enough.

Cardamom Pork Roast with Apples and Figs


3 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon ground fennel
1 (3-pound) pork loin, trimmed
Cooking spray
2 cups dried figs, halved lengthwise
2 cups dried apples
1/4 cup minced crystallized ginger
3/4 cup pear nectar
1 (14-ounce) can fat-free, less-sodium chicken broth


1/2 cup pear nectar
1/2 cup port
2 tablespoons currant jelly
1/4 cup heavy creamPreparation
Preheat oven to 400°.

To prepare the roast, combine the first nine ingredients in a small bowl. Rub mixture over the surface of the roast and place in a shallow roasting pan coated with cooking spray. Place the figs, apples, and crystallized ginger around roast. Pour 3/4 cup nectar and broth over fruit. Bake at 400° for 1 hour and 10 minutes or until meat thermometer registers 145°, stirring the fruit frequently. Remove the roast from the oven and place it on a carving board. Spoon the fruit in a separate bowl using a slotted spoon.

To prepare the sauce, pour any pan juices into a saucepan. Add 1/2 cup pear nectar, port, and jelly; bring to a boil. Cook 4 minutes or until thick enough to lightly coat the back of a spoon. Stir in heavy cream; simmer 2 minutes or until sauce has thickened, stirring occasionally.

Serve thinly sliced roast with a side of some sort (I used mashed cauliflower and garlic), a dollop of fruit, and drizzle with the sauce. Apologies for the picture, the colors on this very colorful dish are a little washed out with all the white (white plate, cauliflower, flash...)

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