I found this Basque palette de porc on sale in the supermarket. The palette de porc (little cured pork roast, like a small ham) that I usually see is enrobed in a Alsatian sauce of mustard and called “deviled”. Since that one was pretty good and the price was right, I decided to try the Basque version.
Knowing absolutely zip about Basque cuisine, I betook myself to the internet and found a site called French Food Freaks. Liking the site’s name, I decided to “pimp” their recipe for roasted vegetables Basque style to accompany my pork roast. I added potatoes to the vegetable mix they used because I had some nice ones, I like potatoes and, according to the internet, so do the Basque. I also excluded the honey, the piment d’espelette and added rosemary, thyme and paprika with a pinch of cayenne; still in keeping with the Basque flavors but with consideration to the pork roast that would cook with the vegetables. For those of you not living in France; buy 2 -3 lb of cured pork roast or pork tenderloin. You will need about 1 to 1 1/2 cups of tomato sauce to pour over the pork roast. Clay pot time!
Note: If you use a clay roaster(Romertopf/Schlemmertopf), don’t forget to soak for 5-10 minutes before using.
Basque Pork Roast with Vegetables
2-3 lb cured pork roast or tenderloin
1-1 1/2 cups of tomato sauce
2 large onions, quartered
1 green pepper, cut into strips
1 red pepper, cut into strips
1 eggplant, halved lengthwise, then sliced
1 zucchini, halved lengthwise, then sliced
1 large tomato, cut into eighths
2 large potatoes, cut into eighths
4 large garlic cloves, sliced
1/2 cup of fresh parsley, chopped
1 teaspoon each, thyme, rosemary and paprika
Pinch of cayenne
Salt and pepper
3 tbsp of olive oil
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl, mix the vegetables, seasonings and olive oil. Pour into a clay roaster or baking pan. Place the roast on top of the vegetables and pour tomato sauce over the roast. Cover with the clay roaster top or if using a baking pan, aluminum foil, being careful that the foil doesn’t touch the meat or vegetables. Roast for 1 hour, remove top or aluminum foil and roast for an additional 15-30 minutes.
Wine suggestion: Enjoy with a Spanish red from the Rioja region.