This is smelling mighty good at this moment–gently simmering on the stove.
A dish I’d bet Marcella Hazan ate regularly at this time of the year growing up in Senatico on Italy’s northeast coast.
Marcella is one of my heroes/mentors–though she doesn’t know it!
She married an American and left home with him to live in New York City in her early thirties.
She claims she had never done much cooking before this–the family meals were cooked by her mother, her grandmothers, aunts, the usual story of an extended Italian family.
Living with a new husband in a foreign land concentrated her mind she claims and she taught herself to cook. She says she remembered the way dishes smelt back in Italy and used this sense to judge if she was doing it right.
No memory of Grandma’s cooking for me but from the smell that’s wafting my way, things seem to be on course!
She cooks Italian/Italian not American/Italian and her books are wonderfully detailed.
There are just three ingredients here apart from olive oil and salt.
It’s a long slow cook.
1.5 lb piece of pork loin–more or less as required, the cooking time will be the same
8 tblsps red wine vinegar
1 tsp black peppercorns
3 bay leaves
- Heat the oil in a solid pan with a lid.
- Sear the meat (brown it) all over then salt it.
- Add the bay leaves, peppercorns and vinegar–and cover the pan tightly. It’s important not to loose too much liquid.
- Cook for an hour and half or longer, on the lowest heat possible*.
- Take out the meat and keep warm, covered with foil.
- Carefully spoon off the fat.
- Add three tablespoons of water and scrape off the bits in the pan.
- Warm the gravy through.
*I cooked this tonight for two hours; it was good but next time I’ll reduce the time a little and use a diffuser.