Roast Loin of Pork with Prunes
Arrosto di Maiale alle Prugne

We first made this pork loin recipe for 11 friends; we upped the recipe - using about a 5 pound rolled pork loin. Since then, this has become a regular preparation for entertaining family and friends. The recipe was found in "Wine & Spirits Guide to Understanding Wine & Food", Fall 1997. The recipe is credited to Lidia Bastianich, Felidia, New York.
6 ounces dried prunes 1/3 cup bourbon
2 pounds boneless rolled pork loin 8 fresh sage leaves
salt and freshly ground pepper 3 tablespoons olive oil
3 cloves garlic, crushed 1/3 cup diced carrot
1/3 cup diced celery 1/3 cup chopped onion
2 cups chicken stock
Soak the prunes in the bourbon for 1 hour (we did it overnight.) Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Drain the prunes and spread them on the inside of the loin, reserving 3 to 4 (I saved more) of them as well as the liquid. Roll the loin tightly; place the sage leaves on the outside of the meat and tie. Season with salt and pepper, place in a roasting pan and coat with the olive oil. Place in the oven and roast for 15 minutes.
Reset the oven to 400 degrees. Remove the meat from the oven, drain the fat from the pan, and scatter the vegetables around the meat. Return the pan to the oven and roast for 15 minutes. Add the stock and the remaining prunes and continue to roast for about 40-45 minutes more - or until the meat has reached 155 to 160 degrees.
Remove the roast to a serving or cutting board. Pass the vegetables through a sieve or food mill, along with the pan juices; skim the fat and reduce the sauce if it is too thin, adjusting the seasoning as necessary. Slice the roast and serve with the warm sauce.
I sliced the roast and then Sharon plated the slices on top of some of the sauce and served it with roasted garlic mashed potatoes. We served a choice of Chardonnay or Rabbit Ridge 1990 Reserve Barbara.