Pork Loin With Grapes
1 (3-pound) boneless center-cut pork loin
1 tablespoon finely chopped thyme, plus 6 whole sprigs
1 tablespoon finely chopped parsley
1½ teaspoons finely chopped rosemary, plus 3 whole sprigs
1½ teaspoons finely chopped sage, plus 3 whole sprigs
½ cup Dijon mustard
6 tablespoons olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 pound fingerling potatoes, halved lengthwise
6 shallots, peeled and halved through the root
1 pound red seedless grapes, snipped into 6 small bunches
½ cup port
½ cup chicken stock
1. Tie the pork loin with kitchen twine at 1-inch intervals. In a shallow dish large enough to hold the pork, whisk together the chopped herbs, mustard, 2 tablespoons of the olive oil, teaspoon salt and teaspoon pepper. Add the pork and coat with the marinade. Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours.
2. One hour before cooking, bring the pork to room temperature. Scrape off and reserve the marinade, then season the meat with salt and pepper.
3. Place a roasting pan in the oven and heat the oven to 325 degrees. Place a large saute pan over high heat. Add 2 more tablespoons of the oil and heat until smoking. Add the pork and sear about 4 minutes on each side, until well browned. Transfer fat side down to the roasting pan. Set the saute pan aside. Rub the reserved marinade over the pork and top with half the butter and the herb sprigs. Place the pan in the oven and cook the meat for 75 minutes, or until the center reaches 125 degrees.
4. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, toss the potatoes, shallots and grapes with the remaining 2 tablespoons oil and season with salt and pepper. After the pork has cooked for 15 minutes, place the potatoes cut side down around the pork. Lay the grapes and shallots over the potatoes.
5. Drain the saute pan of fat and return to medium-high heat. When hot, add the port and bring to a boil, scraping the bottom of the pan. When nearly evaporated, add the chicken stock and return to a boil. Whisk in the remaining butter and season with salt and pepper. Strain through a fine-meshed sieve set over a serving bowl. Cover and keep warm.
6. When the pork is done, transfer to a cutting board. Cover lightly with foil and let rest at least 10 minutes before slicing. Serve on a platter over the grapes, potatoes and shallots, accompanied by the sauce. Serves 6. Loosely adapted from ”Sunday Suppers at Lucques,” by Suzanne Goin. –Jill Santopietro for The New York Times Magazine.