GINNA PARSONS: Minty cookies just in time for holidays

GINNA PARSONS

A couple of weeks ago on this page, I wrote a story about a group of women in a cookbook club who were using Susan Spicer’s cookbook, “Crescent City Cooking” to prepare recipes for their monthly gatherings.

The Journal sprang for a copy of the cookbook for me (half price from Greatest Hits) so I’ve been reading it myself to get some ideas for the fall. One recipe that kept catching my eye was for a pork roast cooked with jalapeños, orange juice and other yummy goodness.

When I finally decided to make this, I went to Todd’s to get the boneless pork shoulder, but the only ones they had were smoked. So I went to Kroger and was told they only sold this piece of meat with the bone in.

When I asked the butcher, Jerry, how long it would take me to cut the bone out, I must have looked pretty pitiful because he graciously offered to take the bone out for me. So what weighed close to 8 pounds initially weighed in right at 6 pounds once the bone was removed.

Seeding and chopping the jalapeños, zesting and juicing the oranges and chopping the garlic took a bit of prep time, but the end result was well worth it. The house smelled good the whole time the roast was cooking and when I served it, my husband, Charlie, said it was the best pork roast I’d ever made. In fact, the next day, when he was eating leftovers, he said, “This roast is so tender it’s like chewing mashed potatoes.”

Jalapeño Roast Pork

1 boneless pork shoulder (about 6 pounds)

Juice and zest of 2 oranges (about 2⁄3 cup)

2 jalapeños, stemmed, seeded and diced

2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme

2 tablespoons minced garlic

2 tablespoons kosher salt

2 tablespoons cracked black pepper

2 tablespoons olive or vegetable oil

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Rinse the pork shoulder and pat dry. Using a paring knife, make several half-inch-deep incisions on both sides of the meat. Mix the juice, jalapeños, thyme, garlic, salt, pepper, and oil, either by hand or by pulsing in a food processor until just mixed. Rub the meat with the mixture, being sure to massage some down into the incisions.

Place the meat in a roasting pan fat side up, cover with foil, and roast for 3 to 4 hours, or until the meat is fork-tender. Cool, remove it from the pan, then shred or slice the pork as desired. After the meat has been removed, add a little water or broth to the roasting pan and stir to dissolve any brown bits, then strain the juices and pour them back over the sliced or shredded meat.

Serves 8 to 10.

Ginna Parsons is the Daily Journal’s food/home/garden editor.

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