Michigan wheat berries with roasted pumpkin and wild mushroom confit
Prep time: 3 hours / Servings: 8
Recipe courtesy of our partner Michigan Wheat Program
Cider-braised pork loin:
- 16 oz. boneless pork loin
- 24 oz. Michigan apple cider
- Aromatics: 1 tsp ground cinnamon,
- 2 tsp crushed garlic
- 3 oz. olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- 2 cups Michigan wheat berries
- 4 cups chicken stock
- 4 oz. roasted cubed Michigan pumpkin
- 2 Tbsp white wine vinegar
- 1 tsp Dijon mustard
- ½ vanilla bean, seeds only
- 2 Tbsp. pure Michigan maple syrup
- 2 Tbsp. brown sugar
- ¼ cup canola oil
- 2 oz. Michigan hard cider
- 8 oz. salad mix
- Salt and pepper to taste
Wild mushroom confit:
- 6 cups mushrooms, small cubes (Michigan wild when available)
- 2 Tbsp salt
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 parsnips, small cubes
- 1 sprig fresh thyme and rosemary, roughly chopped
- 2 cups olive oil
- Place oil in large pan over medium-high heat. When hot, add pork, turning as it sears and sprinkling with salt and pepper. Brown meat well on all sides, 5 minutes total.
- As the pork browns, pour off all but 3 Tbsp. of fat. Turn heat down to medium. Add the cider and aromatics, stirring, until well blended. Place pan in preheated 375 degree oven. Cook for 1 hour; then add chicken stock and Michigan wheat berries. Turn the heat down to 350 degrees so the liquid bubbles gently, then cover and cook, undisturbed for 1 hour. (Note: Wheat berries generally take an hour to cook, taste for tenderness after an hour.)
- Uncover pot; mixture should still be wet and wheat berries almost fully tender. If not, add a little more liquid, cover, and cook for another 15 minutes; check again. The grains should be tender and the mixture moist but not swimming in liquid. If not, repeat this step.
- Add all ingredients for the wild mushroom confit (any mushroom you enjoy) in the pan with pork. Also add cubed pumpkin, wrapped in aluminum foil to keep separate. Turn oven up to 400 degrees for 10 minutes or so to bring the liquid back to a boil. Then lower back to 350 degrees. Cover pan again. Continue to cook, stirring once or twice, until parsnips are tender but not too soft, about 10 to 15 minutes. Allow meat to rest for 15 minutes out of oven prior to any cutting.
- During 15-minute resting period for the pork, remove roasted pumpkin foil packet and mash until smooth. Mix all ingredients for vinaigrette into small saucepan, blending well. Bring to a quick boil, and immediately shut off heat. Continue stirring vinaigrette, so as not to burn the sugars. In a separate bowl, toss salad greens with vinaigrette.
- Cut pork into 1-2 in. slices. Spoon wheat berry blend from roasting pan onto plate, place pork on top of wheat berry blend. Place fresh salad greens on top of pork and serve.
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