Wednesday, October 24, 2012


Living in a tiny NYC apartment comes with many challenges. Like having to jump over your couch to get to the kitchen. Or not having couch. Or a kitchen. Since I actually do have a small slice of a kitchen that is far too close to my bed, I find that I avoid cooking anything that generates (week long) lingering smells like bacon (ahhh...), or fish, or any meat cooked in a pan on the stove top. So it goes without say that because I also don't have an outdoor space to call my own, grilling is totally out of the question. 

Fortunately I have come to the conclusion that many recipes that suggest grilling as a cooking method, can be adapted for the kitchen-bound home cook. I was recently given an awesome cookbook called Big Bob Gibson's BBQ Book which is very exciting because I am a huge fan of all things BBQ. I must admit that I was initially a little sad to think that I wouldn't be able to make any of the recipes at home. Au contraire mon frere!  There are a ton of things that I can make at home and simply pretend that I am outside enjoying the summer breeze with a glass of sweet tea. The pork roast recipe below is meant to be cooked over charcoal, but I made it in the oven with absolute success. Cooking with the combination of a dry rub and barbecue sauce immediately made it taste like I was having the real thing. I can't wait to try some more!

Roasted Pork Loin with Apple Bourbon Barbecue Sauce
Adapted for the oven

1 (2 - 3 pound) boneless pork top loin roast
1 teaspoon olive oil

Dry Rub
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons paprika
1 1/2 teaspoons onion salt
1 1/2 teaspoons garlic salt
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander

1. Preheat the oven to 425° F. Place the pork on a work surface and brush all over with the oil. In a small bowl, stir together the dry rub ingredients. Apply the dry rub to the pork evenly, patting so that the rub adheres.

2. Transfer the pork loin to a  roasting pan or baking sheet and roast for 15 minutes. Reduce the heat to 350° F and continue cooking for an additional 45 - 50 minutes, or until the pork's internal temperature reaches 145 ° F. Baste with some of the sauce during the last 10 minutes of cooking. Let the pork rest under tented foil for at least 10 minutes before serving. Serves about 6.

Barbecue Sauce
2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup diced onion
3/4 cup coarsely grated peeled apple
3 tablespoons bourbon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
2 cups ketchup
1/2 cup distilled white vinegar
1/2 cup cola
1/2 cup brown sugar
6 tablespoons pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon molasses
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
2 1/2 teaspoons liquid smoke

1. In a small skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 4 minutes. Add the apple, bourbon, salt, cayenne pepper, cinnamon, and cumin and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes. Remove form the heat and set aside.

2. In a large nonreactive saucepan, add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Simmer over medium-low heat for 5 minutes. Add the apple mixture and stir well. Simmer for 2 minutes and then remove form the heat. After cooling, transfer to an air tight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Makes about 3 cups.

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