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Tuscan Porchetta

Serve this hearty pork dish with the same wine that you use to make it. A good rule of thumb is to never cook with a wine that you would not want to drink. Also, avoid cooking with liquid labeled “cooking wine,” or the overall flavor of your dish will suffer.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lemons
  • 1 boneless pork loin, about 3 lb., rolled and tied
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 tsp. fennel seeds, crushed
  • 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 fennel bulb, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • 2/3 cup dry white wine

Directions:

Prepare the roast
Preheat an oven to 400°F.

Finely grate 1 Tbs. zest from 1 of the lemons, then thinly slice the second lemon. Season the pork generously with salt, pepper and the lemon zest, then sprinkle with the fennel seeds, patting them firmly so they adhere to the meat.

Roast the pork
In a shallow roasting pan just large enough to hold the pork, stir together the onion, fennel and lemon slices, forming a bed for the meat. Season with salt and pepper and drizzle with 1/3 cup of the wine. Place the pork on the bed of vegetables and lemon slices. Roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the center of the meat registers 145° to 150°F and the pork is barely pink in the center, about 1 1/2 hours.

Transfer the pork to a carving board, cover loosely with aluminum foil and let rest for 10 minutes.

Make the sauce
Meanwhile, place the roasting pan on the stovetop over medium heat, add the remaining 1/3 cup wine to the vegetables and cook, stirring to scrape up the browned bits from the pan bottom, until the sauce is slightly thickened, about 2 minutes. Snip the strings and cut the pork into slices. Arrange on a platter with the vegetables and sauce and serve immediately. Serves 6.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Food Made Fast Series, Simple Suppers, by Melanie Barnard (Oxmoor House, 2007).