My husband had bought a pumpkin at the market and used half of it to make pumpkin Soup (similar to the Butternut Squash soup I made a few weeks ago except with pumpkin). The other half was sitting in the fridge and I was wondering how to cook it. I had not read David Lebovitz's Pumpkin Ice Cream recipe yet (soon to be made), but I had looked at The Pioneer Woman's recipe for roasted garlic and potatoes. We somehow had lots of garlic heads and I remembered a Superball Party back in California where my friend had made roasted garlic. This was a very "ta-da" moment where the taste you expect (garlic) is not at all what you get (this wonderful smooth caramelized taste) and you just fall for the dish. [I had another "ta-da" moment with Vegemite in Australia one day but in a different way!]
Since Americans tend to roast their winter squash a lot, I thought that I could try it with the pumpkin half and the garlic. Then I rushed to the supermarket to get pork roast because I knew (I just knew) that if I had served my roasted garlic and pumpkin vegetarian to my children, let alone to my husband, it would have been one of these "sigh" dinners: it's good but something is missing! As for me, I would have been happy with the vegetarian version!
The results was delicious; my children did try the roasted garlic and did not dislike it (ie, no spitting from my two-year-old!). They ate the pork roast and the pumpkin, asking when were were, at last, going to make a "Jack O Lantern". It was close to Halloween, afterall! Bon Appétit!
Ingredients (for 6 persons)
- Pork Tenderloin (or other pork roast, the more fat, the better) (none for the vegetarian version)
- 3 cups of fresh pumpkin, skin and seeds off, cubed
- Heads of garlic: as many as you want (at least one per person)
- Olive oil (at least 1/2 cup (125ml), salt and pepper
- 1 cup white wine (1/2 cup if cooking the vegetarian version)
- Fresh thyme
- Pre-heat oven to 375F (190C).
- Cut off the head of the garlic, exposing the garlic cloves.
- In a baking pan, put the pork, pumpkin, garlic and fresh thyme. The garlic heads have to be facing up.
- Pour the white wine over the vegetables and the meat.
- Pour olive oil over, making sure the garlic cloves get a lot of olive oil.
- Add salt and pepper to taste.
- Cover with Aluminum foil and put in the oven for 45 minutes.
- Remove the foil, if any liquid remaining, pour it over the meat.
- Put back in the oven for another 20-30 minutes.
- It's cooked when the garlic cloves start to get out of their shell and are golden brown.
My personal comments:
- You could add potatoes to the dish, cut into pieces, skin on.
- I used Tenderloin pork that day because I did not want to stroll to another supermarket where I can find other cuts. Pork meat tends to be dry; the more fat, the better.
- It makes a great leftover dish.