15 January 2013

Recipe: Curried Pork with Vindaloo

In the past few years, I've come to love Indian food. As it happens, there are some excellent Indian restaurants in Bloomington which we have frequented on our trips to visit Bailey at Indiana University. We also have a few good restaurants closer to home and, as I've become more familiar with Indian food, I've tried making some Indian recipes on my own. I have to say that the aroma of Indian food simmering on the stove is just about the best thing ever. I'll admit to stepping out of the house and back in several times while making dinner -- just to take in that wonderful aroma! :)

Over winter break, Bailey and I stopped by our local Penzey's Spices shop and happened upon a recipe for Curried Pork with Vindaloo. We picked up a small container of Penzey's Vindaloo seasoning (which smells incredible!) along with the recipe and made it that night. This was the first time Bailey (a very picky eater) had tried an Indian dish and she gave it rave reviews, so much that I made it a second time over break when her boyfriend visited. This is not an overly spicy recipe, but go easy on the Vindaloo seasoning if you're apprehensive about heat.

 Curried Pork with Vindaloo (Penzey's Spices)
1 lb boneless pork tenderloin cut into ½" to 1" cubes
2-3 Tb. Vindaloo Seasoning (available at Penzey's)
¼  cup malt or cidar vinegar
1 tsp. kosher flake salt
2 TB. canola oil or ghee
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves fresh garlic or 1 tsp. minced garlic
⅔ cup unsweetened coconut milk (a light one with less fat works -- find this in the Asian foods or baking aisle)
       sour cream (optional)

Mix together the vindaloo, malt vinegar and salt into a paste and set aside.  In a large pot, heat the oil or ghee over medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic (if using fresh garlic) and lightly brown. Add the vindaloo paste and stir for about 3-5 minutes. A lot of the vinegar will evaporate, thickening and stiffening the paste, which flavors the oil. Add the meat, stirring to cover it with the paste and searing it for about 2 minutes. Add the coconut milk and garlic (if using dried garlic) and stir to deglaze the pot. Reduce the heat to a low simmer and stir occasionally until the meat is cooked and tender, about 7-10 minutes. 

Serve over jasmine or brown rice. Cut heat with sour cream, if necessary. (Sour cream is excellent on this dish! In an Indian restaurant, it would be served with a yogurt sauce called raita. Sour cream is a good substitute!)

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