Mojo Pork

4 May

Roast Pork with Mojo Criollo (or grill it if you like)

I love to cook a big piece (4-5 pounds or 2-2.5 kg) of boneless pork loin (you will see this item show up again in other guises) and then have left-overs for other meals. I try to buy boneless pork loin when it is under $2.15 per pound, preferable under $2.00 and if I watch sales, I can often get it for $1.88 – $1.99 a pound. I buy whole pork loins (10-11 pounds or 4.5 to 5 kg) and cut them into 4 pound (~2 kg) roasts, thick boneless chops and thinly sliced scrappy bits that I can use for stir-fry or one of my favorite Vietnamese dishes. I wrap whatever I’m not going to use right away in freezer paper, date it and put it in the freezer for another time.

A super-easy way to cook the pork loin is in Mojo Criollo, a Cuban-style marinade. I’m NOT Cuban, so don’t get on my case for how authentic the meal is. This blog is about making things EASY at dinner time. Whoever gets home first throws this in the oven. (Often, this is my husband, the telecommuter.)

Easy Mojo Criollo recipe: juice of 1 lime, juice of 1 orange, 3 cloves garlic (minced or pressed), 1/4 c. olive oil (not extra-virgin), salt and pepper. Mix it up in a bowl, with a little blender, however you like.

Easier Mojo Criollo recipe: Buy a bottle of Mojo Criollo in the Hispanic foods section of your local grocery store. Try to find one that does not use MSG.

Marinate the pork in the sauce. I use a half size hotel pan, but a 9 x 13 baking pan will do. Bake 1 hour at 350 degrees. Throw in a whole sliced onion if you like. The onions will be used in roasted pork sandwich Planned Overs tomorrow. Finish cooking until internal temperature is approximately 155-160 degrees. Please don’t overcook the pork!

For dinner tonight, we’ll have pork roast with yellow rice and black beans, with some fresh green beans on the side. I start the black beans when I start the pork roast and cook them on low so they get mushy. Rice (from a package) needs 25 minutes to prep. Fresh green beans steam in about 8 minutes, depending on how done you like them. We like them green and hot, but not cooked.

Speaking of which, someone once asked me for my black bean recipe. Here it is – saute some onion and garlic in a bit of oil in a small pot. Add a can of black beans in a pot. The whole can, don’t drain. Add about 1 T balsamic vinegar, 2 tsp oregano, 2 tsp cumin, salt and pepper. I don’t measure this – I just throw some in. Cook it until it has a nice consistency. Add some canned chopped tomatoes if you want to. It doesn’t matter.

Planned Over Ideas:

  • Roast pork sandwiches – heat some sliced pork, the onions and the leftover (cooked) marinade. Pour some of the marinade onto crusty bread (like ciabatta), add the pork, onions and a bit of cheese. Cook in the oven until the cheese melts. Yummy!
  • Cuban sandwiches (again, not authentic, but I can’t get good Cuban bread where I am living anyway) – Cuban bread, sliced pork, ham, mustard, thinly sliced pickle, mild white cheese. Cook it on a griddle and weight it/press it down until very thin. Serve with black bean soup (canned is okay!)
  • Pork steak with salsa – make up a decent salsa of chopped items from your refrigerator. Ideas? Tropical fruits and oranges go well with mojo, cilantro, green onions, tomatoes, tomatillos, avocado, peppers, or just use salsa from a jar. Serve it with quinoa or rice.
  • Vietnamese Lettuce Wraps from Saveur

I will add more Planned Over ideas in the coming days, so check back.

Now, when will dinner be ready?

One Response to “Mojo Pork”

  1. Mrs. U. May 7, 2012 at 12:21 pm #

    From Kathryn on our Facebook page: Try the pork with a raisin sauce as a Planned Over option.

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