Here's a dish that I made in September 2015, while on a cooking show in the Philippines. We had to cook with the local ingredients, including fruit from the local orchard. I was assigned Rambutans!
Despite the richness of this recipe, it does have health-giving properties.
- Butter: A host of studies have shown that butter from grassfed beef is high in Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA). CLA is a type of fat that has been studied for its weight loss enhancing properties through enhancing metabolism and supporting the body in its insulin response. It also lowers bad cholesterol and triglycerides. (For those of you who are interested, I have included a link to an article on CLA at the end of this recipe. I hope you enjoy it)
- Rambutans: Besides being rich in Vitamin C and fiber, the fruit contains Gallic acid --- this acts in preventing oxidative damage in the body and helps protect against cancer.
- Cinnamon: This spice from the bark of a tree is highly prized for its medicinal properties and flavor. It's rich in anti-oxidants, carries anti-inflammatory properties, reduces bad cholesterol and triglycerides, while stabilizing good cholesterol. It also supports the body's response to insulin and is helpful for people with Type 2 diabetes.
INGREDIENTS (SERVES 2)
Fresh rambutans - 15 fresh, deseeded
Water - 150 ml
Honey - 3 tablespoons
Cinnamon Powder - 1 Teaspoon
Dark Soya Sauce - 2 Tablespoons
Light Soya Sauce - 3 Tablespoons
Brown sugar - 1 Teaspoon
Butter - 10 grams, melted
Olive Oil - 1 Tablespoon
Garlic - 2 large cloves, sliced
Onion - ½ a medium-sized, sliced
Sherry or Brandy (optional) - 2 Tablespoons
Salt & Cracked Pepper - to taste
Pork - 1 large loin, enough for 2 for a main
For Cooking & the Sauce
Olive Oil - 1 Tablespoon
50 ml of hot water
Butter - 10 grams, solid
Add rambutans and honey to a pot. Add water, bring to simmer till the liquid reduces to ½ and takes on the flavor of the rambutans and a “sticky” consistency. Set aside.
B) Marinating and cooking the meat
Combine all ingredients and add the pork. Leave pork to marinade for at least 10 minutes.
Remove the meat from the marinade and separate as much of the liquid, onions and garlic as possible. Reserve the marinade.
Heat non-stick skillet. When very hot, add ½ tablespoon of olive oil. Sear the pork loins on high heat. After 1 minute, turn over and sear the other side. Turn as needed. Cook through and remove from heat. Place the meat onto a plate and let it rest. When cool, cut into thick chunks.
C) Making the sauce
To make the sauce, use the reserve marinade. Separate the liquid from the garlic and onions.
Add ½ Tablespoon of olive oil into the frying pan, and add the garlic and onions from the marinade. Stir fry till fragrant. Pour in the marinade liquid and simmer with the water. Reduce it.
As the pork is resting, it will release some of its juice. Add the pork jucices to the sauce.
To thicken, add in 10 grams of butter and whisk. Strain sauce using a sieve. Set aside and keep warm.
Place pork loin chunks onto the serving plate. Spoon sauce over around the pork. Top with the rambutan jam and sprinkle over black sesame seeds. For a “Black and White” effect, the dish can be accompanied with white asparagus, white rice, mashed potatoes or cauliflower gratin. If you do want something lighter to balance out the richness of the sauce, you can use cauliflower rice for the "starch" --- I will show you how to make cauliflower rice in another food recipe, coming up soon.
E) Tips and Adaptations
If rambutans are hard to find, you can make this dish with 1 green apple. Simply remove the skin and slice it into 6 slices.
If you are not a fan of pork, you can replace the pork with two pieces of duck breast.