When I started my blog, my main goal was to be inspirational to those who are new at cooking, or fearful about cooking. This wasn’t a new thing for me – I’ve always promoted cooking. For one thing, it is always less expensive, and also the healthier alternative to eating out.
So on my blog, there are no really difficult recipes. In fact, my recipes are often more like guidelines to preparing food. Because home cooking isn’t rocket science. Cooking is very much about common sense, and it’s easy to taper any recipe to your own tastes.
But I happen to love kitchen ware and kitchen gadgets. I’m obsessed with them. Fortunately you can prepare good food without owning all of this “stuff.” I just happen to collect it. It’s like a disease. I finally bought a deep fryer last year, and still haven’t used it.
Finally, after begging for a long while, my family honored my Christmas wish for a sous vide machine a couple of years ago. I studied them for so long, and was sure that I wanted one and would indeed use one often. And I was right.
So I have mixed feelings when I post recipes for which I’ve used my sous vide, because it is a high dollar machine, and not typically in novice cooks’ kitchens. But I wish they were. These machines do magic work.
My briskets and flank steaks will never be tough or chewy. Chicken breasts? Always moist and tender. And then there’s pork loin. Fabulous.
So here’s another recipe that includes a sous vide step. I apologize if you don’t own one. But, I encourage you to look into one. I own the “demi,” which is a smaller version, and much less expensive than the commercial-sized machine. And it still holds a lot of meat.
With a sous vide, meat gets cooked in water of a specific temperature, for a specific amount of time, in vacuum bags. You have a choice to marinate the meat first, then sous vide. (Notice sous vide is a noun and a verb!) Or, sous vide first, then marinate. The last step requires browning the meat, to color it and add some flavor. Otherwise the meat looks like it was just boiled.
For today’s kabobs, I used a fresh herb mixture for the pork’s marinade, which you can alter to taste.
Herbed Pork Kabobs
Pork loin, not tenderloin
4-6 cloves garlic
Sous vide the vaccum-sealed chunk of pork loin for 6 hours at 140 degrees Farenheit. I used half of a pork loin, and it was cut into two pieces. But not for any important reason other than the size the the bags I had available after I’d cut up the huge pork loin.
Immediately refrigerate the pork until it’s fully chilled.
The next day, remove the pork from the bags, trim any fat, and wipe off any excess liquid.
Then chop up the pork into kabob pieces that are uniform in size.
Make the marinade in a large bowl by simply adding enough olive oil to the bowl as needed to cover the pork pieces. Mince garlic and add to the oil.
Then chop up all of the fresh herbs you’re using and add them to the marinade. Add a little salt, and pepper to taste.
Stir well, then add the pork. Stir well to make sure the pork pieces are completely covered with the marinade.
Cover the bowl and refrigerate for 2 days.
On the day you’re serving the pork kabobs, get the bowl from the refrigerator to let the meat lose its chill at room temperature.
Skewer the pork pieces.
Heat an outside grill, if that’s what you’re using. I used my electric grill. Only a little browning of the pork is necessary, so it wasn’t worth doing the charcoal process. Alternatively, you could use a grill on your stove.
For browning purposes, the grill must be on high.
Place the skewers on the grill, and rotate them until they pork is browned on all sides.
If the pork is still cool in the middle, you will need a warm oven or a warming drawer to heat them properly. This will not counteract the lovely work of the sous vide. But it’s easier to make sure that the pork is at room temperature before browning. Some people are just pickier when it’s pork. It’s your personal choice.
Just about any green vegetable can be paired with this lovely garlic and herb flavored pork. I happened to use fresh zucchini from the garden.
note: Just a tip – unless you’re planning on marinating pork for just a couple of hours, no acid, like vinegar or lemon juice, should be included. It will break down the meat too much.