26 October 2007

Rustic Pork Roast with Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes, an Award and a Rambling

One more post before we head for the Great White North of British Columbia for our spa "Couch Potato Weekend" with my co-workers. It is always such a wonderful time to get to know each other on a more personal note...so relaxing as well! It is sad to say but I will miss my blogging in the mornings for the entire weekend. Some of you may relate to that because I really do enjoy my time on the computer in the morning!! Yes I do!!!

Being a member of the blogging world has been an eye-opening experience. We moved to British Columbia from eastern Canada and the major city centre of Toronto. I have lived in many areas, in different provinces of the country and I have discovered 2 things over the years. Number one is that people are the same everywhere whether you live in a large city centre or in a small community. And secondly, for the most part, especially in Southern Ontario ,you are never far away from a major metropolis where you can find all manner of foods and cultural cuisine and ingredients. The cheese shops, charcuteries, specialty and ethnic shops abound in the large centres.

When I moved to the valley 13 years ago I missed Toronto and all its cultural diversity. I could find anything I wanted there and a trip on the "Go Train" would get me into the heart of the city to the Danforth for the best souvlakia and tzatziki in the country, Yorkville with its upscale boutiques and first class restaurants ... Cabbagetown, Chinatown, The Beaches...you name it. There was probably a myriad of opportunities that I had yet to discover. Upon moving to a small community with a population of 100,000 I missed out on all of that for years, but eventually came to terms with the "out of site out of mind" philosophy. If you can't find it here you don't need it. Upon entering the blogging world I am reopening new doors that have been closed for years. I am learning about new foods and diverse cuisine, ingredients I have never heard of in my life before. The "out of site out of mind" philosophy is no longer working and I am craving a visit to a large centre to drool over all the abundance of cheeses, breads, specialty foods and ethnic cuisine.

Blogging I have learnt about boudin sausage, Pashmak or Iranian Fairy Floss, and jaggery so far. I am sure there will be many more ingredients I have never heard of!

I have learnt, but probably already knew, that capsicums are peppers, aubergines are eggplants, courgettes are zucchini, scallions are spring onions .The list could go on forever I'm sure of it. There is a whole new world of innovative and interesting cooking out there for the taking!

On to the recipe. When I lived in Ontario a delicious, succulent pork roast was easy to find. I can still get a nice roast at Costco. This will fill your home with all the wonderful aromas of autumn.

The photo is of my daughter years ago in the Haliburton's.

**Rustic Pork Roast with Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes**

Pork Roast:

4 - 6 lb pork roast
1 head of garlic, minced
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, minced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried thyme
freshly ground black pepper
salt to taste


1 dozen red bliss potatoes
1 head of garlic
3/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
1/2 cup milk
1 tablespoon olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper

For Roasted Garlic Mashed Potatoes: Preheat your oven to 350F.

Cut the top off one of your garlic heads, to expose the individual cloves. Place in the centre of a piece of aluminum foil. Drizzle olive oil over the garlic head. Wrap foil to close securely and bake for 50 minutes. Set aside.

In saucepan cook potatoes with chicken broth. Mash potatoes with butter, Parmesan. 1/2 cup milk, 1 T olive oil, salt and pepper.

For Roast Pork: Preheat oven to 425F.

Blend minced garlic, parsley, oregano and thyme. Using a sharp knife, cut holes in the roast, approximately 1-inch deep, every inch in the entire roast. Fill these pockets with your garlic mixture.

Place in a roasting pan,, with about 1/2-inch of water and season with salt and pepper. Cook for 10 minutes at 425F and then lower the oven temperature to 350F to additional 40 minutes. Baste your roast about every 15 minutes.

When done, remove roast from pan and let sit about 10 minutes before carving to let the roast rest and reabsorb it's juices.

Make a gravy using the drippings from the roasting pan if you desire.
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  1. Oooooh, I like this garlic/herb mixture...I look forward to stabbing my pork loin with this!

  2. Aw, that's a cute photo. And what a nice, rustic dinner!

  3. I totally agree with you about the blogging world - I have learned so many things and been introduced to so many new ingredients since I started blogging. And this meal looks wonderful!!

  4. Valli, Hi,Thanks for visiting my blog, I have only been blogging for 2 mths. it's so exciting to read comments from bloggers that come to my site. Just like you, I buy pork roast from Costco here in Chicago. They have really good meat there! Your site has intrigued me for 1/2 an hour, I love your recipes and your style of writing!! I'll be back to see what other goodies you got cooking!!!

  5. I hope you have a wonderful time!
    I've been away for a week and I really missed the computer and have a lot of great blogs to read and catch up on!

  6. You made my day. Thanks for the award. That's so nice and thoughtful. And also you had the same idea of me of making a roast. Last night I was thinking that it was a long time since I have not had a nice rustic roast and I wanted to make one for Sunday night Supper. I buy mine at Costco also. They have the best meat around. Have a great week-end and lot's of fun!

  7. What a wonderful post! Isn't the food blogging world great, I have been so surprised that it is such a warm supportive community and you described it very well!

    What will your spa couch potato weekend consist off? I am intrigued, hope you have a great weekend and there are a few good glasses of wine involved, large ones!

    Thank you for the award, you have been a lovely friend and I always look forward to you posts and emails!

  8. aww, Valli..you so deserve your nice award!

  9. Super sounding dish.
    I guess you're on your spa break and hopefully having a wonderful time.

  10. Oh, how sweet, Valli...both the Nice Matters award, and especially that adorable blonde gal! :-)

    I have been feeling down recently, and have been hiding out, for lack of a better way to describe it, but I always smile when I visit here. :-)

  11. My mouth is watering thinking about a succulent juicy pork roast. And the parmesan mashed potatoes sound tasty.

  12. Mmm that sounds fabulous, especially the garlic mash.

  13. I love pork roast! I love that we're back into roasting season again. Have a great wekend!

  14. Dear Valli,
    Thanks again for your thoughtful comments. I hope that you'll have a wonderful time in Great White North with your co-workers.
    x Nora

  15. I'm having a roast of pork tonight for dinner!

    I'm also looking forward to moving back to Toronto so I can get in on all the foodstuffs I've been missing...

  16. I hope you enjoy Peter!
    Yes my daughter was and is still a cutie Kelly!! I'm just a proud mom!
    I agree Deborah!
    I'm glad you had a chance to visit Proud Italian Cook. I feel the same way about your blog with all its wonderful dishes!
    We had a wonderful weekend Nicisme at the spa! I am catching up on what I have missed as well!
    Costco has the best meat around this area as well Helene. Hope you get a chance to cook a pork roast!
    I have enjoyed getting to know you better Holler. Blogging is also about making friends all over the world and sharing ideas, thoughts and recipes. The spa was wonderful!!! 45 minute massage hiking, horseback riding or doing nothing at all is what the spa is all about!
    Thank you Mary-Ann and Amanda!
    I'm sorry to hear that you have been feeling down Belinda. I alsways really enjoy hearing from you with all your wonderful recipes, thoughts and inspirations!
    Thank you absolutely everyone!!!!Kevin, Julia, Katiez, Nora, Brilynn!!!! I appreciate all your comments and support always!!!!

  17. Valli thank you so much for the award! I am glad someone nominated you because you surely deserve it. You are such a good blogger friend!
    I do adore pork. We have it one way or another at least once a week and there is nothing better on a fall night than garlic mashed potatoes!!!!!!


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