Arista is the Tuscan name for pork roast, and is also applied to the cut of meat used to make pork roast, the loin with ribs attached. According to Artusi the name arista derives from an ecumenical council held in Florence in 1430 to attempt to settle the differences between the Greek and Roman Churches, during which the Florentines served their guests roast pork loin seasoned with rosemary, salt, and pepper. The Greeks all began to exclaim, "Arista, arista! (good, good!)" and the name stuck. Pork loin is a perfect cut for family or company, and here is a selection of my favorite Italian pork loin, or arista recipes.
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Pellegrino Artusi included many interesting recipes in La Scienza in Cucina,
one of the first cookbooks in Italian (he published it in 1891, and it's still selling briskly today).
If you're historically inclined, his recipe for roast pork loin with herbs is one of the most interesting. It's also quite tasty, and a staple in Tuscany. And, it is one of the first dishes I remember enjoying (in Montalcino) as a child.
This lemony pork loin simmered in milk was one of the first things my mother-in-law cooked for me (before I married her daughter), and this recipe is still one of my favorite ways of preparing pork loin. Very good, and easy too. It's also nice served cool, in the summer months.
Though cooked on top of the stove, this is actually a roast of the type known in Tuscany as an arrosto morto. The recipe draws from Pellegrino Artusi, and in addition ot being quite tasty, presents beautifully. This roast is also an excellent leftover.
Since salt roasting draws moisture (and fat) from unprotected meats, you will need to lardon the loin with pancetta. The result is a delightfully moist pork roast, served with a spicy horseradish sauce.
Filetto di Maiale in Crosta: pork loin roasted en croute, with a bread crust, is very tasty and has the added benefit of presenting beautifully too. In short, pork loin en croute is the perfect recipe for when company comes calling.
Pork and apples are a universal combination. This recipe calls for a whole pork loin, and will take about an hour and a half to prepare.
Mustard is not the most common Italian seasoning. But it does work very well with pork loin, and also combines nicely with oranges in this fall pork roast, which will be nice for a family meal, but is also elegant enough for company.
Pork and apples is a common combination, and there are many Italian recipes for it too. Here we have boned pork loin roasted with apples, a dish that will be nice at a family meal, but that is also elegant enough to serve company.
Pork loin is quite versatile, and is also well suited to marinades. This pork loin recipe takes some planning -- one has to marinate the meat -- but is quite tasty, and also easy to cook.
Pork loin with balsamic vinegar is an expensive dish, because it should be made with balsamic vinegar, which isn't cheap. I probably wouldn't use true balsamic vinegar, which must age at least 12 years, and is very expensive, but would not use something industrial off the vinegar section of the supermarket shelf either. Rather, a barrel-aged vinegar that's 5-8 years old.