From Chef Jon Mortimer this hearty dish offers complex, exotic flavor and a chance to showcase local meat. Author of The Idaho Table and an Idaho-food radio show host, Mortimer champions simplicity. “I get great pork—why should I put 17 different ingredients with it?” he says. “Food happens in the field. I’m only the steward of it.”
2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoon kosher salt
3 to 4 pounds pork roast (fat trimmed to 1/4 inch)
2 cinnamon sticks
1 tablespoon cumin seeds
2 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Preheat oven to 400°F. Heat gas grill to high (or light charcoal barbecue). Place the cinnamon sticks, cumin seeds and coriander in a small oven-able sauté pan and place the pan in the oven. Cook the spices for 10 to 12 minutes or until very fragrant. Remove the pan from the oven and turn the oven down to 275 degrees. Allow the spices to cool for ten minutes then place them in a spice grinder (cleaned out coffee mill will do fine) and grind them to a consistently smooth powder. Combine the spice powder with the cayenne pepper and the salt.
Rinse the pork roast with cold water and pat dry with paper towels. Rub the roast with the olive oil coating evenly and consistently then rub with the spice mixture and allow to “rest” for twenty minutes at room temperature. Place the pork roast on the grill with the “fat cap” down. Allow to brown for about 2 minutes then roll onto the top of the rack so that the fat cap is facing up. Two minutes again then roll onto the back for 2 additional minutes. Continue this process on all sides then place it in a roasting pan and into the preheated 275 degree oven. Allow to roast for about one and a halfhour or until the internal temperature is about 145 degrees. Remove the pork roast from the pan and place it on a cutting board with the fat cap facing up. Allow to “rest” for at least 5 minutes
then carve into one-half inch slices when ready to serve (make sure to carve against the grain).
For the Smoked Tomato and Chipotle Stew:
8 smoked Roma tomatoes (cut in half and smoked for ½ hour, or fresh tomatoes if desired)
1 large Walla Walla sweet onion
2 oz. Vegetable oil
2 to 4 Chipotle peppers (chopped)
1 zucchini (diced)
1 yellow squash (diced)
2 stalks celery (cut on a bias)
2 small carrots (peeled and cut on a bias)
1-cup pork stock (use chicken if unavailable)
1-cup tomato juice
Ground black pepper to taste
Kosher salt to taste
20 sprigs fresh cilantro
Method: In the center of a gas burner place the whole onion with skin on and turn the burner on. Allow the onion to roast until completely blackened then rotate the onion and repeat until the entire onion is completely blackened. Allow the onion to cool for ten minutes then place it on a cutting board and cut it in half. Peel the blackened outer part off the onion and discard then julienne the remaining roasted inner part of the onion.
In a large skillet heat the oil and sauté the zucchini, squash, celery, carrot and chipotles until they begin to soften and become translucent. Then add the stock, tomato juice and roasted onion and bring the pan to a simmer. Allow to cook for about twenty minutes or until the liquid is reduced by Â¼. Stir in the cilantro and season with salt and black pepper (if needed).
To serve: In the center of eight warm entrée plates place about 2/4 cup of “green rice” or any favorite Mexican style rice recipe. Ladle the stew around the rice and place a chop of the pork loin on top. Garnish with a wedge of lime.
W.E. WINE RECOMMENDATION: Pair this dish with spicy whites (Riesling, Gewürtztraminer) or an earthy red (Meritage) from the local Snake River winemaking region. Recommended producers: Ste Chapelle, Sawtooth and Koenig Vineyards.
Sponsored by Terlato Family Vineyards http://www.TerlatoVineyards.com.