A cup of tea, a great novel and the aroma of a roast cooking in the oven—the perfect ingredients for a rainy weekend afternoon at home. That’s the way I spent my Sunday a couple of weeks ago when I made this very tasty roast pork loin with potatoes. The recipe is adapted from one in Bon Appetit’s June feature about Brunello Cucinelli, an Italian designer who serves this dish (among others) to his workers in their Umbrian company headquarters. He employs three home cooks who produce this quality of food everyday for their luncheons—how’s that for an idyllic place to work?
Roast Pork Loin and Potatoes with Rosemary and Garlic
To make the roast:
8 garlic cloves
¼ cup fresh rosemary leaves
½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more
2 tablespoons olive oil
1- 4 pound boneless pork loin, butterflied (the easy way is to ask your butcher to do this)
Ground black pepper
2 cups dry white wine
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and position one rack in the middle for the roast and one rack in the bottom third for the potatoes. On a cutting board sprinkle the garlic cloves and rosemary leaves with ½ teaspoon of salt. Mince the mixture as finely as you can and mash it all together with the side of the knife so that the mixture almost becomes a paste. Transfer the mixture into a small bowl and add the olive oil.
Unfold the pork loin with the skin side down and the shortest end toward you. Spread the garlic and rosemary paste all over the meat and then sprinkle it all with additional kosher salt and ground black pepper. Starting at the bottom nearest you, roll the roast as tightly as you can and then tie it with lengths of kitchen twine about 1” apart.
Season the rolled and tied roast all over with additional salt and pepper and then put it in a shallow roasting pan. Pour the wine into the pan with the roast, place in the preheated oven and roast for about 1 ½ to 2 hours. Check to see if the roast is done (145 degrees) using an instant read thermometer at the 1 hour 15 minute mark.
When the roast is done, move it to a cutting board and let it rest for at least 10 minutes and up to 30. Skim the fat from the roasting pan and discard it. Pour the remaining liquid into a small saucepan, bring it to a boil and let it gently boil while the roast is resting. Slice the roast, and serve it with the pan juices.
To make the potatoes:
1 cup white vinegar
¼ cup kosher salt plus more
3 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 1” squares or wedges
4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed with the side of a large, heavy knife
6 small sprigs rosemary
¼ cup dry white wine
2 tablespoons olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
In a large pot, put the vinegar, ¼ cup of salt, and 4 quarts of water and bring it to a boil. Add the potatoes and cook for 7 minutes. (They will not be done) Drain into a colander and toss so that the steam rises from them and leaves the potatoes dry. Transfer the potatoes to a rimmed baking sheet large enough to hold them in a single layer. Toss with the garlic, rosemary, wine and olive oil and then season with kosher salt and ground pepper to taste. Put the potatoes in the oven on the bottom rack 45 minutes before you plan to serve the roast. Turn them once after about 20 minutes and then continue to roast them for another 25 minutes or until nicely browned.
For a nice presentation, place the roast slices in the middle of a platter, and surround them with the potatoes and a few rosemary sprigs.