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Victoria Country Club chef offers recipes for the holidays

By Jessica Rodrigo
Nov. 13, 2012 at 5:13 a.m.
Updated Nov. 19, 2012 at 5:19 a.m.

Victoria Country Club Executive Chef Matthew Reid prepares a pork loin roast, a family favorite for holiday gatherings.

Apple Stuffed Pork Loin Roast

Yield: 6-8 servings

3 Tbsp. olive oil

1 large onion, chopped

2 Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and chopped

8 fresh sage leaves

1 bunch flat leaf parsley

2 cups thick-cut white bread cubes, crusts removed

1 egg, beaten

2 Tbsp. butter

Salt and pepper

½ to 1 cup chicken broth, plus more if needed

1 (3 pound) pork loin roast, butterflied

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion, apples, parsley and sage. Saute until softened. Remove from the heat and gently stir in the bread, egg, butter and salt and pepper. Add the chicken broth gradually until everything is moistened. Let the stuffing mixture cool completely before putting it in the pork loin. Spoon the stuffing down the pork, horizontally, in a line. Roll the pork over the stuffing, jelly roll style, ending with the seam down and fat side up. Tightly tie the pork loin up with butcher's twine, season it with more salt, pepper and herbs and transfer to a roasting pan. Roast the pork in a preheated oven for about 90 minutes or until a thermometer registers 160 degrees F. Remove from the oven and let rest for 15 minutes before slicing. Garnish with apples and fresh herbs.

Black-eyed Pea Salad

Yield: 8 servings

5 cups cooked and drained black-eyed peas (you can substitute edamame for the peas)

10 slices bacon, cooked until crisp and crumbled, fat reserved separately

½ cup plus 2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar

½ cup olive oil

½ cup finely chopped red onion (½ medium onion)

½ cup red bell pepper

3 Tbsp. finely chopped green onions

2 Tbsp. finely chopped jalapenos

2 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh cilantro

1 ½ tsp minced garlic

1 ½ tsp Cajun seasoning

¼ tsp salt

½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

Combine the black-eyed peas, crumbled bacon, 3 tablespoons of the reserved bacon fat and all remaining ingredients in a large bowl and toss well to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least four hours, or preferably overnight.

Allow salad to come to room temperature for 30 minutes before serving. Toss well just before serving.

Whether you are cooking for Thanksgiving, Christmas, or New Year's Day, Chef Matthew Reid, of the Victoria Country Club, shared some of his favorite recipes and tips for cooking during the holidays.

Growing up in Louisiana, he said, the star dish of the meal for holiday get-togethers was often a pork loin roast.

Reid, who is in charge of planning menus and wine dinners at the country club, said professionals in the restaurant industry use a simple formula. The usual formula is 5 to 7 ounces for meat/protein, 2.5 to 3.5 ounces for starches, including rice and potatoes, and about 2 ounces for vegetables.

Take those numbers, he said, and multiply them by the number of people and then divide that by 16, which will give you the number of ounces needed per person.

"It's always better to have too much than to have not enough," he said. "There's no worse sin than not having enough."

He added that anything left over can always go into a soup or another meal later in the week.

When he was younger, around the New Year holiday, his mother would prepare a dish to celebrate the coming year.

"Something my family still does is the black-eyed peas and cabbage. The black-eyed peas are supposed to represent good luck and the cabbage for money," he said.

Reid offered his recipe for pork loin roast and recipe for black-eyed pea salad that he said can be substituted with fresh edamame for a fresher, healthier rendition.

"Have fun with it, and enjoy it," he said. "Get some help if you have to, tag-team it in the kitchen."

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