I can’t remember the last time I did a blog post without any photographs. This is one of those rare occasions.
Hui-chen asked me to cook a pork tenderloin in the Dutch oven this evening. I used the 10″ model. After burning it out and seasoning it with olive oil, I added some sea salt and browned the meat. After the tenderloin was well browned, I added about a KG of garlic (just kidding, but a good amount!), carrots and potatoes. Originally we weren’t going to use those vegetables, but at the last minute Hui-chen decided that she would like them. Last to go in was a ton of basil. Lately I’ve been using a lot of basil and I’m concerned that most of the dishes that I have made recently have been basil based. Even so, the flavor of the basil permeates the meat and the results are excellent.
We also had roast corn, Native American style, which is cooked in the husk over the fire. This is one of my all time favorite foods and I have made many a camp meal out of roasted corn. Local stores cut the husk off and it’s often difficult to find corn with the husk intact. Many shoppers will pull the husk back to inspect the corn and you have to deal with that also. Since corn is sold by weight in most places in Taiwan you might have to deal with the smartassed person at the weigh station, who in my case, made a snide remark to another customer about how the foreigner was so stupid that he was paying for the husk by leaving it on. The result is worth any ridicule! Also, truth be told, I have been buying corn for years without opening the husk and I have only found a couple of bad ears of corn. Just give it a squeeze and if it’s nice and firm, it should be good.
I decided to not add any liquid to this batch, but to roast the ingredients dry. Using the lid for the 12″ and a “divot” or lid stand, I made a cooking platform for the 10″ to rest upon. The reason that I did this was because the grill full of charcoal was just too hot and the food would have burned. By placing a limited number of coals on the 12″ lid, placing the 10″ upon the lid and then adding top coals, I was able to very easily control the heat.
This is what the divot looks like. It’s designed to hold a lid off the ground to keep it clean. Remember, everything about Dutch ovens is hot so you can’t just put a lid down on a table.
Our local store didn’t have any whole pineapples, so we bought a can of sliced pineapple. Hui-chen used our blender and made a puree of pineapple that I used to finish the roasted pork tenderloin and vegetables. I am definitely going to try using a whole pineapple for the next time because the flavor of the reduced juice of pineapple matched the pork/basil meat flavor so well.
I promise that I will get photos next time!
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