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Healthy Eating, Mains

Colombo pork loin curry

Colombo pork loin curry
Glenn Koenig / Los Angeles Times

Bold Cajun blends, Chinese five-spice powder, Caribbean jerk, garam masala from India, Middle Eastern baharat, Thai green curry paste -- each of these blends of spices and herbs has its origins as a cornerstone of a regional cuisine. Traditionally developed ... Read more

Total time: 1 hour, 20 minutes plus marinating time | Serves 4 to 6

Marinated pork

  • 2 pounds pork loin, cut into 2-inch cubes
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons minced ginger
  • 1 to 2 habanero peppers, seeded and minced
  • Pinch ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 2 tablespoons white-wine vinegar

Step 1Place the meat in a large sealable plastic bag or nonreactive container. Add the onion, garlic, ginger and peppers, then the cumin, salt and pepper. Pour in the oil and vinegar and mix well. Cover and chill for 2 to 3 hours. Shake off and discard the excess marinade.

Colombo curry

  • 3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
  • Marinated pork
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 sprig thyme, leaves removed and chopped
  • 1 sprig flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cloves
  • 1 to 2 habanero chiles (optional, as desired), seeded and minced
  • Scant 1/2 cup poudre de Colombo
  • 2 cups diced potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4 -inch cubes
  • 1 eggplant, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 3 medium or 2 large zucchini, sliced on the bias crosswise into 1/2 -inch slices
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons toasted and ground rice
  • Juice of 2 limes, plus lime wedges for serving, divided
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Step 1Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large, heavy-bottom soup pot over high heat. Add the marinated pork pieces and sear over high heat, careful not to burn, about 5 minutes (the pork will not brown).

Step 2Stir in the chicken broth and 3 cups water, then stir in the onion, garlic, thyme, parsley, bay leaf, cloves and poudre de Colombo. Season with three-fourths teaspoon salt, or to taste. Cover and bring to a boil; cook for 15 minutes.

Step 3Stir in the potatoes, cover and reduce the heat to a gentle simmer. Continue to cook, at a bare simmer, for 20 minutes, until the potatoes are just tender. During the last 10 minutes, remove the pork (keep it warm) and stir in the eggplant and zucchini. When the vegetables are tender, strain them and add them to the pork. Discard the bay leaf, parsley sprig, thyme sprig and cloves.

Step 4Bring the sauce to a simmer and gently rain in the ground rice, whisking until it's fully incorporated with no lumps. Simmer the sauce until the rice is cooked and the sauce is thickened, about 5 minutes. Add the lime juice and the remaining oil, and season with one-fourth teaspoon salt, or to taste. Pour the sauce over the meat and vegetables and serve immediately.

Note: Adapted from "Creole" by Babette de Rozieres. To make the ground rice, toast a single layer of rice in a heavy-bottom skillet over medium-high heat for 5 minutes until golden, shaking frequently. Cool the rice and grind to a fine powder using a spice or coffee grinder; sift the rice through a fine mesh strainer to remove any large particles.


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