Saturday, April 14, 2018

Pork Roast with Roasted Jalapeño Gravy

Taqueria del Sol restaurants are wildly popular down in Georgia and Tennessee. The restaurants are run by Eddie Hernandez, who grew up in Monterrey, Mexico. But when Eddie later moved to Georgia, he fell in love with southern cooking. So he created his own, unique cuisine...which is essentially "good old southern cooking" meets Mexican. Pork roast with Roasted Jalapeño Gravy is one of the most coveted specials at his restaurants. This spectacular recipe was recently published in The New York Times and I really wanted to share it with you.


For the roast
1 tablespoon Kosher salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon granulated garlic
1 tablespoon granulated onion
2-1/2 to 3 pound boneless pork loin, with a good layer of fat on it

For the gravy
3 tablespoons butter
4 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons all-purpose flour
2 jalapeños
1 teaspoon vegetable oil
1 cup half-and-half
2 cups chicken stock
1 teaspoon Kosher salt


  1. About 3 hours before cooking, mix together salt, pepper, garlic and onion seasonings. Place the pork on a rack set in a roasting pan and sprinkle the roast with the spice mixture, rubbing it lightly so it adheres to the meat. Let roast sit in refrigerator for 3 hours.
  2. Heat oven to 475º.
  3. Roast for 40 minutes. If the fat begins to get too dark, tent with foil.
  4. While the roast is cooking, make a roux for the gravy by melting the butter in a small saucepan set over medium heat. Add the flour all at once and whisk vigorously until smooth. When the mixture thins and starts to bubble, reduce the heat to low. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, whisking slowly, until the mixture smells nutty and toasty and is still light-colored. Cook for 2 more minutes, stirring occasionally, then set aside and let cool.
  5. When the roast is done, cover and let it rest for at least 10 minutes. Reduce the oven to 450 degrees. Place the jalapeños in a small pan, brush with oil and roast for 6 minutes, or until soft. Remove the stems and some or all of the seeds and membranes, depending on how hot the peppers are and how hot you want the gravy. Dice the jalapeños.
  6. Place the half-and-half, stock, salt and jalapeños in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Quickly reduce heat to medium. Cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until slightly reduced. Stir in 4 tablespoons of the roux and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, whisking continually, until the sauce is thickened and bubbly. Stir in a little more roux if needed to reach the desired thickness and, if desired, any accumulated juices from the roast. Slice the roast, cover in gravy and serve.

Pairing: If you absolutely insist on having wine with this dish, my suggestion would be to reach for a big, fruity Zinfandel. However, whenever there are jalapeños involved, I'm going to grab a cold bottle of Pacifico.

Grogs and Goldie, 1956

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