Grace your holiday table with a rack of pork (the centre-cut loin with ribs attached). Add to its elegance with this classic mushroom stuffing that has the intense woodsy flavour of dried shiitake mushrooms. For easy carving, be sure the butcher has removed the backbone.
- Portion size 8 servings
- 2 oz dried shiitake mushrooms
- 2/3 cups milk
- 1 1/2 cup fresh crustless bread crumbs
- 3 tablespoons butter
- 1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
- 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
- 1 1/2 cup crimini mushroom finely chopped
- 1 1/2 cup button mushroom finely chopped
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon white pepper
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 3 tablespoons dry white port
- 3 tablespoons medium dry sherry
- 3 egg yolks
- 1 rack of pork (4 to 5 lb/2 to 2.2 kg) backbone removed
- 2 leeks white and light green parts only, sliced
- 2 cups sodium-reduced chicken stock
- 1 cup whipping cream
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch
Rinse shiitake mushrooms briefly under cold water. In bowl, soak shiitakes in 2 cups (500 mL) warm water until softened, about 30 minutes. Drain, reserving liquid. Cut off and reserve stems; finely chop caps and set aside.
Meanwhile, in saucepan, bring milk to boil; add bread crumbs, mixing well. Let stand for 5 minutes. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly and beating with wooden spoon, until thickened, smooth and difficult to stir, about 2 minutes. Transfer to food processor.
In skillet, heat butter over medium-high heat; fry shallots for 2 minutes. Add chopped shiitake caps; fry until lightly browned, about 3 minutes. Add crimini mushrooms, thyme, 1/4 tsp (1 mL) of the salt, nutmeg and pepper; fry, stirring, until crimini are softened and dry, about 3 minutes. Stir in 2 tbsp (25 mL) of the port.
Add mushroom mixture to bread-crumb mixture in food processor; whirl until smooth. Add egg yolks; mix well. Let cool. (Make-ahead: Refrigerate in airtight container for up to 24 hours.) Place in piping bag fitted with large plain tip or in plastic bag with corner cut off; set aside.
With long sharp knife, cut 2-inch (5 cm) wide slit lengthwise through centre of roast. With wooden spoon handle, stretch meat to enlarge slit. Stand roast on end. Insert piping bag tip into slit and squeeze out mushroom stuffing.
Wrap ends of ribs in foil to prevent charring. Place roast in greased roasting pan; sprinkle with remaining salt. Surround with leeks and reserved shiitake mushroom stems; pour in 1 cup (250 mL) each of the stock and reserved mushroom soaking liquid.
Roast in 325°F (160°C) oven, basting with pan juices about every 30 minutes, until meat thermometer inserted into thickest part (not stuffing) registers 160°F (70°C), about 1-1/2 hours. Transfer roast to warmed platter; tent with foil and let stand for at least 10 minutes or for up to 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, in saucepan, bring whipping cream to boil over medium-high heat; boil until reduced by half, about 8 minutes. Set aside.
Pour remaining stock and mushroom soaking liquid into roasting pan; bring to boil over high heat. Boil for 8 minutes. Add remaining port. Strain through fine sieve, pressing solids, into cream; bring to boil. Mix cornstarch with 1 tbsp (15 mL) water; stir into sauce and return to boil, stirring. Pour into warmed gravy boat. Serve with roast.
Nutritional facts <b>Per each of 8 servings:</b> about
- Sodium 474 mg
- Protein 34 g
- Calories 484.0
- Total fat 32 g
- Cholesterol 215 mg
- Saturated fat 15 g
- Total carbohydrate 16 g
- Iron 19.0
- Folate 17.0
- Calcium 10.0
- Vitamin A 19.0
- Vitamin C 3.0