Cooking is all about the timing

February 10, 2007

And getting the timing right on dishes you’ve never made before is TOUGH. Tonight I tried three things I’ve never done, and somehow it all managed to work out. The first part was the pork loins, which I had never done in the oven on broil before (I recently got a broil pan, so I’ve been experimenting with it). To go on that I prepared a red wine, shallot, and butter sauce. As a side dish I made broccoli with cheddar cheese. In the end, it all came together, and I had a delicious meal, but it was rough deciding how long to do each thing and when to start and stop processes.

The red wine sauce was the hardest. I started out with a little butter and cooked the diced shallots until they were darker. Then I added about 1/2 cup of red wine and reduced it. Finally I added a stick of butter and mixed. Unfortunately, the butter melted too much, so it was a softer sauce than I wanted. I put it in the freezer to harden a little. Meanwhile I had boiled some broccoli, put it in a glass pan and shredded cheddar on top. It went in the oven, which was already broiling the pork, and doing a fine job of it. Since I give myself permission to criticize my own work, I have to say the cheddar could have used a minute less in the oven (it was underneath the pork, so it wasn’t getting the brunt of the broiler, but it still melted the cheese a little too much), the fat around the loin was slightly crispy, and the wine sauce was slightly runny. But if I was sitting at the table and someone set the plate in front of me, I would have thought it was a fantastic meal and wouldn’t have even noticed. This is definitely one I’ll be repeating.

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