Man, what a treat this was!
When I was first approached about the idea of filming on location again, this time at Magpie Cage Recording Studio, I was totally stoked. When I realized it was Andy Bopp who invited us to come into the studio while he finished mixing his record with none other than J. Robbins at the helm, I was overcome with excitement. What an exciting way to bring music and food together the way we like to do, than to actually bring food to recording studio, where the music is being made! There’s also the fact that Andy produced Stars and The Sea’s latest EP, which contains our theme music, which was also recorded right there in the same studio! What a way to bring it all around full circle!
In the test kitchen, at that time, I was working on a roasted sweet potato salad with fresh roasted red peppers and a tarragon vinaigrette. I was serving it with a roasted pork loin for family dinner. The sweet potato salad came out so good, I decided I was going to serve that to Bopp and company as a side dish to whatever I prepared for them. I kept thinking about how good the potatoes were that night with the pork, but knew I needed something more “portable” in the studio, that’s when I decided to make paninis with the porchetta. Through many hours in the test kitchen, I removed the red peppers from the sweet potato salad recipe, and decided to add them to the sandwich. The sandwich was still missing that pop, it needed something to put it over the edge. That’s when I played around with the the idea of a take on Chimichurri sauce. It worked brilliantly. The vinegar helped to really bring out the flavors of the roasted pork, which really absorbed the zingy condiment.
When we packed up and headed to the studio for filming, the garage doors were raised, and we were greeted by Andy. Andy has been releasing records for the better part of two decades. He has toured the world and written and released 15 albums! He took me on a tour of the studio. I was introduced to J. Robbins, not only producer extraordinaire, but former bass player with Government Issue and founding member of Jawbox, among other endeavors. I met Warren Boes, guitarist on the new record, who performed with Andy for the episode. Joe Goldsborough was there, too! He founded Merkin records, a power house of the Baltimore music scene in the late 80’s and 90’s. There was a lot of rock and roll royalty in this room!
I hope you enjoy watching this episode as much as I enjoyed making it.
Here’s to music, here’s to food \m/ !!!
Red Pepper Roasted Chimichurri
Thinly Sliced Roasted Pork Loin a la Porchetta
Sliced Whole Milk Mozzarella Cheese
Mini Italian Bread Loaves
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Heat a Panini press or grill pan to medium high. Slice bread in half to open and remove some of the bread from the inside of the top half. Layer cheese along the top and bottom loaf halves. Pile as much pork loin onto bottom layer of bread as you want! Spoon a healthy layer of chimichurri sauce on top of the pork, carefully ensuring even coverage. Close up sandwich, and brush a thin layer of oil onto the top of the sandwich, and the bottom of the press. Carefully place panini on to the press. Close the panini makeand apply some pressure to the top to press down on the sandwich. Allow to cook for a few minutes until the bread is crispy and slightly browned. If using a grill pan, use another frying pan to apply pressure to the top, or a brick wrapped in foil. Flip over when one side is done to complete process.
Remove from press or pan to cutting board. Using a serratedbread knife, cut sandwich into four equal pieces for serving. Serve with Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Tarragon Vinaigrette.
Roasted Red Pepper Chimichurri
2 Red Bell Peppers
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Kosher salt and Fresh cracked pepper
2 cloves garlic, peeled and diced
1/4 cup fresh parsley, coarsely chopped
2 tbl white wine vinegar
Preheat broiler. Line pie pan with foil. Place peppers in pan, drizzle olive oil around, coating all sides thinly. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place under broiler. The goal here is to ‘char’ all four sides of the peppers. Keep watch. When one side is charred, use tongs and flip to the next side, repeating for all four sides. When the entire pepper is charred, remove from the oven. Seal the peppers tightly for about 15 minutes. Open foil packet and let peppers cool a bit until you can handle them. Slice the pepper open, and remove the seeds and any pith. Scrape the skins off with a knife or pull off with your fingers. It’s ok to leave a few char spots in there. Coarsely chop red peppers. Combine in a bowl with a few drizzles of olive oil, salt and pepper to taste, the garlic, parsley, and the vinegar. Stir to combine thoroughly.
Roasted Pork Loin (a laPorchetta)
2 lbs boneless pork loin, butterflied and laid flat
2 sprigs Rosemary, leaves stripped, chopped
6 sprigs Thyme, leaves stripped, chopped
-3 cloves Garlic, peeled and chopped
-Extra virgin olive oil
-Fresh Cracked Pepper
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Lay flat your butterflied pork loin on your cutting board. Drizzle with just a bit of olive oil to coat the meat. Evenly distribute the garlic, rosemary and thyme over the meat, creating an even layer from corner to corner, end to end. Carefully roll up the pork loin like a jelly roll. Cut five equal pieces of cooking twine, about 8 inches each. Tie each piece of twine around the pork in even increments. Tie tightly, and cut off any extra pieces.
Place pork fatty side down in an oven safe grill pan heated to high. Sear the fatty side of the loin until golden brown and a crust has formed. Flip over turning fatty side up, and place grill pan in pre-heated oven. Roast until internal temperature is 150 degrees, approximately 45 minutes. Remove from oven and place on a plate, and in the refrigerator to cool. You don’t want to slice this now, as you’ll lose all the juices. You want all the juices to redistribute and slice for the paninis when cold. Slice as thin as you can with a sharp knife. You won’t be able to help yourself, so eat a couple of pieces now!!!
Roasted Sweet Potato Salad with Mushrooms and Tarragon Vinaigrette
2 lbs Sweet Potatoes, peeled, and cut in to a ¾ inch dice
6 medium Portabello mushroom caps, sliced, and dices into the same size as sweet potatoes
1 medium Red Onion, peeled, and chopped into the same approximate size as other vegetables
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Fresh Cracked Pepper
White Wine Vinegar, 1 to 2 tablespoons
4 Sprigs Fresh Tarragon, leaves stripped and coarsely chopped
Combine first three ingredients in large mixing bowl. Toss with ¼ cup olive oil, 1 tsp salt, and a few turns of pepper. Mix well. Place in large baking pan and put into 375 degree oven. This is gonna take about 30 minutes or so. You kind of want the sweet potatoes a little “al dente”. Don’t overcook to the point that they turn to mush. Keep checking on them, stirring them, and checking their doneness. Once done, remove from oven, and let cool until warm, about 20 minutes. Drizzle some white wine vinegar and a couple drizzles olive oil over potato mixture while still warm. Stir, allowing the vegetables to soak up the pan juices, oil, and vinegar. Stir in your fresh tarragon. Give it all a taste. You may want a few more drops of vinegar. This is also the time to adjust your salt and pepper, you may want more.
Chef Jeremy Davis
Co-Producer, Camera, Editor
Second Camera, Production Assistant
Performance Audio Engineer
Photography by Rock N Roll Socialite