With the weather turning cooler, I’m beginning to think about moving from the grill back into the kitchen and turning on the oven again. I’m itching to roast a pork loin and you know what the perfect partner for that would be-a mostarda. Originally from Italy, a mostarda is a fruit conserve made with candied fruit and a spicy dose of essence of mustard. Although produced in various parts of the country using different friuts, the most well known is probably Mostarda di Cremona from the region of Lombardia.
This version from a past issue of Bon Appetit would also be perfect served with salumi and cheeses. For my next batch I’m going to add little more crushed pepper and maybe some dried mustard powder to the original recipe as I prefer it a bit spicier.
6 cups stemmed seedless red grapes (about 2 pounds)
1 cup chopped red onion
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup champagne vinegar
2 tablespoons mustard seeds
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
Peel of 1 orange, removed in strips with a vegetable peeler
1 bay leaf
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
Bring all ingredients, except mustard, to simmer in a heavy large saucepan over medium heat, stirring until sugar dissolves. SImmer until liquids thicken and grapes are soft, but most are still intact, stirring often, about 20 minutes. Mix in mustard. Cool, cover and chill.
As for turning on the oven, mine is currently out of whack and therefore I haven’t been baking at all. Hopefully the situation will be remedied this week and I’ll be back to posting more frequently.