Pork Loin with Pistachio Crust and Mastiha Mashed Potatoes

  • 6 large baking potatoes (about 4 ½ pounds), peeled, cut crosswise into thirds

  • ½ -1 cup warm milk

  • ½ - 2/3 cup Mastiha-scented extra virgin Greek olive oil

  • Salt and pepper to taste

  • 1 ¼ lb boneless pork loin, trimmed

  • 4 Tbsp. unsalted Aegina pistachios

  • 1 Tbsp. chopped mint

  • 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh oregano or marjoram

  • 1 small garlic clove, chopped

  • 1 Tbsp. grated orange zest

  • Salt and pepper

  • 2 Tbsp. extra virgin Greek olive oil

  1. Place potatoes in a heavy large pot. Cover with cold water. Boil over medium-high heat until potatoes are tender when pierced with fork, about 40 minutes. Drain, reserving 1 ½ cups potato cooking liquid.

  2. While the potatoes are boiling, prepare the pork: Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C). Pat pork dry and season with salt and pepper. Place the pistachios, mint, oregano or marjoram, garlic, and orange zest in a food processor and pulse until ground to a fine meal. Empty onto a plate.

  3. Τurn the pork in the nut mixture, rotating and pressing so that the loin is completely coated. Heat the olive oil in a large heavy skillet and sear the crusted loin until brown, about 3 minutes.

  4. Transfer the loin to a shallow baking pan and roast for 30-45 minutes or until a thermometer inserted diagonally at least 2 inches into pork registers 155°F. Remove from oven, let stand for 10-12 minutes, and cut into slices.

  5. While the loin is roasting, complete the mashed potatoes: Place the boiled potatoes back in the hot pot. Add a little salt and a little of the milk and Mastiha-scented olive oil and begin to mash the mixture by hand with a potato masher. Continue adding the milk and olive oil in alternating doses, mashing all the while, until the potatoes are smooth and creamy. Season to taste with additional salt and pepper. Serve the mashed potatoes and pork together and drizzle with the pan juices from the pork roast.