Pork with Cider Sauce and Neeps and Tatties

Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Cider Sauce, Neeps and Tatties - Outlander on STARZ Episode 104

We've got a big night coming up at Castle Leoch this Saturday! MacKenzie men are traveling from near and far to pledge their troth to the Laird, and once the dirk kissing and quaich quenching are done, they'll spend the night in the Great Hall, drinking and feasting until the sun once again glows through the thick glass to wake everyone for the tynchal.

(Because it's always a  good idea to get yourself a knife-sharp, eye-blurring hangover before heading out into the woods to bring down an animal with tusks as sharp as your sword.)

I think I'll stay in the kitchen with Mrs. Fitz and her maids. I'm of much more use once the boar is on the butcher's block.

Outlander on STARZ

Let's take a minute to admire the roomy domain of the castle cook - I admit I've got a fresh case of kitchen envy.

Great roaring fires, fresh herbs covering the work bench and a few extra pairs of hands to help with the work, including plucking those geese hanging over by the window after they've had a few extra days to ripen.

It certainly wouldn't be a walk in the park to feed all those people day after day, but I'd sure like to try it for a week.  Would you?

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This week's recipes celebrate the Gathering. The roast pork is in honour of the boar, and alongside I'm serving the classic Scottish combination of neeps and tatties. More on those down below.

First up is a pork tenderloin rubbed with sage and garlic, and served with a cider pan sauce. I pulled out my mortar and pestle to grind the rub and help me get better in touch with my inner 18th Century cook, but a small food processor will work too.

The whole meal comes together in under an hour.

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As promised, after the main dish come the sides, and there are few side dishes as Scottish as neeps and tatties.

Neep is Scottish for rutabaga, as it is commonly known in parts of North America, or Swede, as many Commonwealth countries call it. Swedish turnip, yellow turnip, tumshie and baigie are just a few of its other names. Botanically, it is a cross between a turnip and wild mustard, and was first documented in 1620, growing in the wild in Sweden. It's the slightly yellowish mound on the left in the above picture.

As for the tatties, aka potatoes, there is some question as to whether or not Castle Leoch would have had potatoes in 1743. Potatoes were first introduced into Scotland in that very year by a clan chief returning from a visit to Ireland, but since Jamie was unfamiliar with them in Dragonfly in Amber, it's unlikely that said chief was a MacKenzie (or a Fraser, for that matter).

On the other hand, by 1800, potatoes accounted for approximately 80% of a Highlander's diet, so having them on the plate isn't too terribly anachronistic, aye?

rutabaga

Other Outlander Kitchen recipes that pair with Episode 104:  The Gathering

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