Asian Persuasion

People always ask me how I choose what to cook. I go to the store/farmer's market and see what looks good, and I go from there. That's it. No elaborate planning. Cooking from the hip, as it were. Seasonal squash, lovely Niman Ranch pork and a love for soup inspired this Asian influenced creation. Crispy, succulent pork loin offsets the sweet and spicy Butternut soup. The time put into this dish is definitely paid back to you in delicious spades.

Spicy Butternut Soup with Crispy Pork and Pear/Daikon Slaw
(Recipe serves 6-8)

For the Soup:
1 Butternut squash, split, seeded, peeled and diced

1 T. Canola Oil
2 cups Stock
2 cups Water
1 T. Ginger, minced
1 T. Garlic, minced
2 Star Anise pods
3 Bay Leaves
1/4 cup Sweet Chili Paste
1 T. Sambal
1 T. Sriracha
(Note: This does make for a very spicy soup, so if you'd prefer less heat, use less chili paste, Sriracha and Sambal.)

Toss Butternut squash with oil and a pinch of salt. Roast at 300 F for 20-30 minutes until browning starts.

Add squash to a pan with stock, garlic, ginger, star anise, and bay leaves.
Bring to a simmer and cook until squash is soft.

Strain liquid and reserve.
Puree solids in a blender with some of the cooking liquid until smooth.
Add back to a pan and adjust consistency with reserved cooking liquid.
Whisk in chili paste, Sambal and Sriracha.

Adjust flavor with salt and sugar.

Crispy Pork:

1 1/4 lbs. Pork Loin, Center Cut, Fat still attached

1/4 cup Mirin (Rice Wine)
1/4 cup Rice Wine Vinegar
1/8 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
2 T. Sriracha
1 T. Canola Oil
1 T. Hoisin sauce
1 T. Brown Sugar

Combine all.

Marinate Pork Loin for at least an hour and up to four.

1 T. Canola Oil
1/2 Onion, medium dice
1 Jalapeno, sliced
1 T. Ginger, minced
1 T. Garlic, minced
1 cup Mirin
1-2 cups stock/water

Heat a saucepan. Add canola oil.
Sear all sides of the pork loin and remove.
Toss onions and jalapeno and saute until softened.
Add ginger and garlic and saute a minute or so more.
Add pork back to pan.
Add liquid to cover by about 3/4.

Bring to a simmer.
Cover, and place in 300 F oven for about 3 hours, flipping the loin halfway.
Remove pork from the liquid and shred with a fork (or tongs.)

Heat a saute pan on high, add a little oil and saute pork until browned and crispy.

For the Slaw:
1/2 Asian pear, peeled and diced
1/2 Daikon radish, peeled and diced
1 bunch Green Onion, green parts, sliced thin
1/2 tsp. Rice Wine Vinegar
Pinch of salt

Toss together and refrigerate.

Serve soup with a pile of crispy pork and some of the pear/daikon slaw.

1 comment:

TexasDeb said...

Absolutely amazing combination of flavors and textures. Looking forward to trying some crisped pork in/on something soon.