Turkey not really your forte? Have we got a holiday spread for you this week! I reached out to Lidia Bastianich for a fabulous alternative to the traditional Thanksgiving pièce de résistance and, per usual, she delivered tenfold…an ENTIRE MEAL!
Presenting Lidia’s Prune-Stuffed Roasted Pork Loin plated with Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes and Marinated Winter Squash – a terrifically tasty trifecta from the Emmy award-winning television host, best-selling cookbook author, and restaurateur. Most of all, my friend!
Plus, a few words from the Star Chef herself… 🙂
“Roasted pork loin is always a great holiday centerpiece. It is delicious plain, with herbs and rosemary, but I love the element of prunes paired with pork, especially if they are doused with grappa or bourbon. I use the prunes as a stuffing, and throw a few in the sauce as well. Much to my surprise, this has become an old favorite of my readers ever since they discovered it in Lidia’s Italian Table— I believe it is the prunes that give the dish that something extra special that is so tasty and appealing, and demonstrate that the dinner is a special event.”
“Who doesn’t like mashed potatoes? Of course we love them, but everyone wants to be careful about adding too much butter. So try making it the way my nonna used to make it in Italy—with olive oil, or with garlic and olive oil. It’s healthier, and still a favorite at our table. For a variation, toast three garlic cloves in olive oil in a large skillet, let cool to room temperature, and add to the riced potatoes.”
“Squash is becoming ever more popular, and I love cooking with it and its fabulous flavor as well. This is a great side dish or appetizer— traditionally the zucca is fried before it is marinated, as I do here, but it is also delicious when grilled or boiled first. Though I recommend butternut squash, acorn, Hubbard, and other varieties will work as well.”