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Sacramento Boomer

A Festive Feast: 3 Elegant Entrées

Dec 09, 2019 09:05AM

Roasted Rack of Pork and Garlic Creamed Cabbage with Bacon Lardons, Marsala Wine-Poached Apples, and Bacon Jus

Submitted by Grange Restaurant & Bar, 926 J Street, Sacramento, 916-492-4450,
Roasted Rack of Pork and Garlic Creamed Cabbage with Bacon Lardons, Marsala Wine-Poached Apples, and Bacon Jus

1 rack of pork (Frenched and trimmed of excess fat)
1/4 batch recipe of pork brine: boil 12 qts. water, 1,900 g. brown sugar (3 qts. Packed), 1,267 g. salt (2 qts.), 36 g. black peppercorns, 3 cinnamon sticks, 7 bay leaves, and 7 oranges, halved; after boiling, pour over ice to cool)

2 heads Savoy cabbage (or any green cabbage), cored and julienned
1 head garlic, thinly sliced
3 yellow onions, julienned
1 qt. heavy cream
2 bunches chives

4 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and cut into wedges
1 pint Marsala wine
1 cup brown sugar
3 tbsp. sherry vinegar

1.25 lb. bacon, cut into lardons (small strips)
1 shallot, julienned
2 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1 qt. pork stork (or chicken stock)
2 sprigs of thyme

For the Pork:
Make and cool the brine. Brine pork for 8-12 hours in the refrigerator. Remove from brine and let the pork come to room temperature. Preheat oven to 400. Season pork with salt and pepper and place on a rack in a heavy roasting pan. Cook for 25 minutes and then drop the temperature down to 325 for 45-55 minutes or until internal temperature reads 130-140 (depending on how well you like your pork cooked). Let rest for 15 minutes and slice into individual chops.

For the Cabbage:
In a pot, melt 2 tbsp. butter on medium heat. Add garlic and pinch of salt and sweat for 2 minutes. Add heavy cream. Turn heat to low and let mixture reduce slightly (10 minutes). Purée in blender until smooth and reserve for cabbage.

In a heavy braising pan (with lid) coat the bottom with enough oil to cover and add 1/4 stick of butter. Melt on medium heat. Add onions and a pinch of salt and sweat for 5 minutes. Add cabbage and a pinch more salt and sweat for 10 minutes; turn down the heat and use the lid if cabbage starts to color too much. When cabbage is tender and liquid has evaporated, add garlic cream. Season to taste and add chopped chives.

For the Apples:
In a pot, add Marsala wine, vinegar, and sugar, and reduce by 1/3. Add apples and cover with just enough water. Gently poach apples until tender. Let cool in the liquid. Remove apples from liquid and roast in oven to get color before serving.

For the Bacon Jus:
Use the roasting pan from the pork rack after cooking the pork (while it rests); add the bacon lardons and start to render over medium heat on the stove. Once the bacon is crispy, reserve for garnishing the cabbage. Drain some, but not all the fat from the pan. Add shallot and garlic. Once you get some color, add sherry vinegar. Reduce by half. Add stock and thyme. Reduce by half and strain.

Greek Slow-Roasted Leg of Lamb

Submitted by Bella Karragiannidis,, @ful-filled
Greek Slow-Roasted Leg of Lamb

5 lb. boneless leg of lamb
8 cloves of garlic, peeled and slivered
Salt and pepper
1 tsp. paprika
2 tsp. dried oregano
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups white wine
2 large lemons, juiced (peels reserved)
3 sprigs fresh rosemary
1 bundle fresh thyme

Fresh lemon, for servingPreheat oven to 450. Use a small knife to make incisions all over the lamb, with most on the top. Cut garlic cloves into slivers and stuff into the incisions. Sprinkle generously all over with salt, pepper, paprika, and oregano. Drizzle with olive oil and rub all over.

Place the lamb in a roasting pan and cook for 20 minutes or until it has a nice brown crust. Remove lamb from the oven and turn the oven down to 350. Turn the lamb upside down and then add the wine and lemon juice to the roasting pan. Place the rosemary and thyme sprigs all around the lamb and then add the lemon peels to the pan. Cover roasting pan with a lid or baking/parchment paper then 2 layers of foil and return to the oven for 2.5 hours.

Remove roast from the oven and remove the lid/foil. Turn the lamb over so it is the right side up. Cover again and roast for an additional 1.5 hours, or until you can pull the meat apart with forks. Remove cover and roast for an additional 30 minutes (to brown). Remove from the oven and transfer lamb to serving platter. Cover loosely with foil and let rest for 30 minutes.

Strain liquid into a clear jar and wait for the fat to rise to the top. Scoop/pour most of the fat and season the sauce with pepper and lemon to taste (if necessary). Serve lamb with fresh lemon and the sauce on the side.

Christmas Goose with Apricot Stuffing

Submitted by Echo & Rig, 500 J Street, Suite 150, Sacramento,
Christmas Goose with Apricot Stuffing

1 goose, 6-8 lbs.
2 apples, cored and quartered
2 onions, quartered
2 thick slices applewood-smoked bacon
1 onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped
1 bay leaf
1 tbsp. fresh thyme
3 sprigs fresh parsley
4 cups chicken stock
1 cup red wine
1 tbsp. cornstarch
1 pinch kosher salt

1 onion, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tbsp. thyme, finely chopped
1 tbsp. parsley, finely chopped
1 tbsp. sage, finely chopped
1 tbsp. garlic, finely chopped
1 cup dried apricots, chopped
2 1/2 cups crumbled stale bread
1 egg
1 1/2 cups chicken stock

For the Goose:
Soak the cleaned and plucked goose overnight in well-salted water. Rinse and dry the goose, then stuff with apples and 2 onions. Place the goose, breast side up, in a roasting pan. Place strips of bacon on top of the goose and cover with a lid or foil. Brown in a 475-degree oven until bacon is crisp. Discard bacon and the fat from the drippings in the bottom of the roasting.

Add chopped onion, carrot, celery, bay leaf, parsley, thyme, chicken stock, and red wine. Re-cover the pan and continue roasting in the oven at 375. Roast for about 2 hours, basting often. The goose is done when the meat easily pulls off the bone. Uncover and brown for 20 minutes at 475 degrees.

Remove goose from roaster. Discard apples and onions. Strain the pan drippings into a saucepan. Over low heat, thicken the mixture with 1 tbsp. of cornstarch mixed with 2 tbsp. of water. Serve with seasonal vegetable and Apricot Stuffing (below)

For the Stuffing:
In a skillet, sauté onions and celery in olive oil. Cook until the vegetables are translucent. In a large bowl, mix sautéed vegetables, garlic, apricots, thyme, parsley, sage, and bread. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and the chicken stock, then pour over the stuffing and mix. Pour mixture into a greased casserole dish, and bake at 375 for 45 minutes or until the center is hot. 

Compiled by Tara Mendanha