Roast Pork Loin with Saba

Efisio Farris's sister Angela uses her own homemade saba (reduced grape must) to add tangy-sweet richness to a glaze for pork tenderloin. "The saba and Mediterranean herbs combine to give a deep traditional flavor to this 'modern' cut of pork," Farris says.


Slideshow:  More Pork Dishes


  • Active:
  • Total Time:
  • Servings: 4
  • Time(Other): plus overnight marinating

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  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 8 thyme sprigs
  • 4 rosemary sprigs
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons saba or vincotto (see Note)
  • One 2-pound pork loin
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 1 cup vegetable stock or low-sodium broth
  • 1 teaspoon cornstarch dissolved in 1 tablespoon water

How to make this recipe

  1. In a large bowl, combine 1/2 cup of the olive oil with the thyme, rosemary, garlic, bay leaf and 2 tablespoons of the <em>saba</em>. Add the pork and turn to coat with the marinade. Cover and refrigerate overnight, turning a few times.

  2. Preheat the oven to 350&#176;. In a large ovenproof skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Remove the pork from the marinade; reserve the marinade. Season the pork all over with salt and pepper, add to the skillet and cook over moderate heat until browned all over, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.

  3. Add the red wine to the skillet and bring to a boil over high heat, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the skillet. Add the vegetable stock and the reserved marinade and bring to a boil. Add the pork, fat side up, and roast in the oven for about 50 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the center of the loin registers 140&#176;.

  4. Transfer the pork to a rimmed baking sheet and let rest for 10 minutes. Strain the liquid from the skillet into a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over moderate heat. Add 1/4 cup of the <em>saba</em> and stir in the cornstarch slurry. Simmer the sauce, stirring, until thickened, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

  5. Preheat the broiler. Brush the top of the roast with 2 tablespoons of the <em>saba</em> and broil for about 1 minute, or until glazed. Turn the roast, brush with the remaining 2 tablespoons of <em>saba</em> and broil for 1 minute. Let the pork rest for 10 minutes. Carve the roast and serve with the sauce.


Saba, the Italian condiment made from reduced grape must, is available at specialty-food stores and by mail-order from or

Suggested Pairing

The saba in this juicy pork recipe adds a dark, winey fruitiness, making it an ideal match for one of Sardinia's robust red blends. Look for one that combines Carignano and Syrah or Bovale Sardo, Carignano and Cannonau.

Contributed By Photo © Simon Watson Published September 2007

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