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Archive for the ‘Pork’ Category

Barbecued Pork Chops with Mustardy Greens

The veg really make this dish and all in season right now. Blanch all the vegetables individually before you get going with everything else and cook them until just done, then drain in a colander and rinse with cold water to stop them cooking further.

Wine Suggestion: chosen for no other reason than it was in the fridge –  a bottle of Olim Bauda Gavi di Gavi which we found a little fuller than other Gavi we’ve had recently and a good match. A fortuitous choice.

Barbecued pork chops with mustardy greens – serves 2

  • a knob of butter
  • a small onion, sliced
  • 75ml white wine
  • 2 tsp wholegrain mustard
  • 4 tbsp double cream
  • 2 thick-cut pork chops
  • 75g mangetout, blanched
  • 75g green beans, blanched
  • a handful of peas, blanched

When you get home from the butchers, take the pork chops out of their wrapping and season all over with fine sea salt (we use kosher salt). Leave in the fridge but take them out a good half hour or more before you want to cook them.

Heat the knob of butter in a frying pan, then cook the onion until soft. Add the wine and simmer for a minute before adding the mustard and cream. Simmer for another few minutes.

Heat a barbecue to very hot. Rub the chops with oil and season generously. Cook for about 4-5 minutes on each side or until cooked through. Turn on the side and sear the fat also. Rest for a few minutes while you finish the veg.

Reheat the sauce and stir in the blanched vegetables until piping hot. Season, then spoon the veg onto warm plates and top with a chop.

(Original recipe by Janine Ratcliffe in Olive Magazine, July 2013)

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Pork Satay with Spicy Peanut Sauce

A really tasty dish for the barbecue. Marinate the pork for up to 24 hours in advance if you can, or if not put the marinade on and leave out of the fridge for an hour before cooking. The peanut sauce can be made up in advance too. Good served with rice and salad. We served Sabrina Ghayour’s ‘shaken’ sweet quick pickled onions and smacked cucumber salad from her book – Bazaar.

Wine Suggestion: We think this goes really well with red wines with easier tannins and tonight we had the elegant Ex Arena by Domaine de Cebene from Faugeres in southern France. 100% Grenache, perfumed, juicy red fruits and refined finish. The fruit complimented the spices and it wasn’t too rich or heavy either.

Pork satay with spicy peanut sauce – serves 4

  • 450g pork fillet, cut into 2cm cubes

FOR THE MARINADE:

  • 150ml coconut milk
  • 1 tbsp finely grated ginger
  • 1 tbsp finely chopped lemongrass
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • 2 tsp freshly ground coriander seeds
  • 2 tsp freshly ground cumin seeds
  • 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt

FOR THE SPICY PEANUT SAUCE:

  • 3 generous tbsp crunchy peanut butter
  • ½ red chilli, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 2 tsp finely grated fresh root ginger
  • ¼ tsp ground turmeric
  • 1 generous tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

Mix the marinade ingredients together in a large bowl, then add the meat and toss to coat. Set aside for at least an hour or up to 24 hours in the fridge.

Place the peanut sauce ingredients in a food processor with 50ml of water and whiz until smooth.

Thread the pork unto metal skewers (you can use wooden skewers but you need to soak them first).

Heat the barbecue, then cook the skewers for a few minutes on each side or until cooked through.

Meanwhile, gently heat the peanut sauce in a small saucepan. Serve immediately with the peanut sauce spooned over.

(Original recipe from Rachel’s Everyday Kitchen by Rachel Allen, HarperCollins, 2013.)

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Jambalaya

We made this from Cerys Matthews’ book, Where the Wild Cooks Go. The book is just as good for the playlists as it is for the recipes. It was sunny today and we spent all day outside and lit a fire in the evening, with music from the American South.

Wine Suggestion: we think Syrah/Shiraz is the grape to look out for to match this dish … just make sure it isn’t too jammy and alcoholic or it’ll feel clumsy with the food. As we’re dipping into our cellar a bit more at the moment we pulled out a 10 year old Pierre Gaillard Cornas (100% Syrah) that was still a baby and a little tight and unruly when first tasted. It then opened up in the glass and gave leathery damson flavours with hints of tobacco leaf and brambles. The fruit was juicy and didn’t fight the spices in the food, and was the right weight to not overwhelm them either.

Jambalaya – serves 4

  • 2 tbsp oil
  • 6 smoked sausages/hot dogs, sliced – we used a big kielbasa sausage from the Polski section of the local spar shop and chopped it up
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • a small green pepper, chopped
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 4 large fresh tomatoes or 1 x 400g tin of tomatoes
  • ½tsp paprika
  • ¼ tsp dried thyme
  • ½ tsp cayenne
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 200g brown basmati rice
  • 1 litre vegetable stock

Heat a large deep frying pan or sauté pan over a medium heat, then fry the sausage until browned.

Remove the sausage from the pan with a slotted spoon, then add the onion, celery and green pepper. Cook for about 8 minutes or until softened. Stir in the garlic and cook for another couple of minutes. Then stir in the tomatoes.

Add the spices and bay leaves along with plenty of seasoning and stir well. Tip the sausages back in and stir in the rice.

Pour 750ml of the stock in and bring to a simmer. Simmer gently for 10 minutes and try not to stir. Cover the pan, reduce the heat to very low and cook for another 20 minutes. Taste the rice to check if its cooked, you may need to cook for longer. If it starts to look a bit dry just add some more stock.

Taste and adjust the seasoning and serve with hot sauce on the side if you like.

(Original recipe from Where the Wild Cooks Go by Cerys Matthews, Penguin Books, 2019.)

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Sticky glazed gammon with creamy, mustard cabbage

We’re managing being stuck at home by keeping up our cooking routine and making something delicious to eat everyday. However, like many of the you, our budget has been restricted. So, we’re using everything up in the cupboards and buying good value items like gammon and a gigantic cabbage from our local farm shop which lasted us for days!

It’s also a good distraction from some of the daily events of the world to have to be creative with ingredients

Wine Suggestion: a light, juicy and relatively simple red works well with this. Tonight it’s the La Combe St Roche red from the Languedoc; an inexpensive and easy drinking blend of Grenache, Cinsault, Carignan and Merlot.

Sticky glazed gammon with creamy mustard cabbage – serves 2

  • ½ savoy cabbage, shredded
  • butter
  • unsmoked gammon steaks
  • 1 tbsp runny honey
  • a dash of Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbsp half-fat crème fraîche
  • 1 tbsp grainy mustard

Cook the cabbage in boiling salted water for a few minutes or until tender, then drain really well. Tip the cabbage out onto some kitchen roll to get rid of any extra moisture.

Heat a knob of butter in a large frying pan until foaming, then add the gammon and cook for 2 minutes on each side until golden. Add the honey and Worcestershire sauce, turn up the heat and continue to cook for another couple of minutes or until sticky and glazed.

Heat the crème fraîche and mustard in a pan, add the cabbage, heat until piping hot, then season. Spoon the cabbage unto plates and top with the gammon.

(Original recipe by Janine Ratcliffe in Olive Magazine, March 2016.)

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Pork, bacon & mushroom stew

A rich and delicious dish from Time by Gill Meller. This is the second outing for this recipe, the first being for friends on Jules’ birthday when we served with jacket potatoes and salad (Gill suggests salad and good bread). You can make it ahead and reheat on the hob, adding the cream and mushrooms, on the day. You may need to order the pork in advance from your butcher.

Wine suggestion: such a rich dish needs a wine with good body and also freshness to cut through the rich layers. To our mind this demands a good oaked Chardonnay so we opened a Pernand- Vergelesses white from Domain de Montille. It may have been youthful but it didn’t lose anything for this as we think an older wine wouldn’t stand up to the richness; an enjoyable choice.

A stew of pork, bacon & mushrooms with cream, cider & parsely – serves 4

  • a piece of cured pork belly (streaky bacon) about 350g, cut into 4-5cm cubes
  • 500g fresh pork belly, cut into 4-5cm cubes
  • 1 large leek, halved and sliced
  • 2 to 3 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 4 to 6 bay leaves
  • 2 to 3 rosemary sprigs
  • 2 to 3 thyme sprigs
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 450ml cider
  • 450ml pork, chicken or veg stock
  • knob of butter
  • 250g wild or chestnut mushrooms, halved
  • 200ml double cream
  • small bunch of parsley, chopped

Heat the oven to 150C/300F/gas mark 3.

Heat a splash of oil in a heavy-based casserole dish over a medium-high heat. Add all of the pork and cook until well browned – about 6-8 minutes. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Add the leeks, garlic, herbs and a little seasoning to the pan. Sweat for 10 minutes before returning the pork to the pan, sprinkle over the flour and stir well. Cook for another few minutes, then pour in the cider and stock and bring to a simmer. Cover with a tight lid and cook in the oven for 2 hours, or until very tender.

Meanwhile, heat a large frying pan over a high heat and add the knob of butter. When the butter is bubbling, add the mushrooms, season lightly and sauté until cooked through – 6 to 8 minutes. Set aside.

Remove the casserole from the oven after the 2 hours and add the fried mushrooms and double cream. Stir well, then put the casserole back into the oven for another 15 minutes without the lid.

Stir in the chopped parsley and season to taste.

(Original recipe from Time by Gill Meller, Quadrille, 2018.)

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Spanish rice with pork & spinach

Another great one-pot dish by Diana Henry – one our absolute favourite food writers (we might have said that already). Don’t be tempted to stir the rice, it’s not a risotto.

Wine Suggestion: this dish goes with juicy Spanish reds with a good option being the Finca Antigua Syrah from La Mancha. While not a traditional grape variety for Spain, Syrah is increasingly seen and seems to take on a local twist which we find works really well; creamy with warm spices.

Spanish rice with pork and spinach – serves 6

  • 350g pork fillet, halved lengthways and sliced
  • 7 tbsp olive oil
  • 100 chorizo, skin removed and cut into chunks
  • 300g bacon, cut into meaty chunks (you might have to order a piece of bacon from your butcher)
  • 2 large onions, roughly chopped
  • 2 red peppers, sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika
  • ¼ tsp dried chilli flakes
  • 300g paella rice
  • 1.2 litres hot chicken stock
  • 650g spinach
  • 1 lemon

Season the pork. Heat 3 tbsp of the olive oil in a large frying pan and quickly brown the pork until cooked through, then set aside.

Reduce the heat and add another 3 tbsp of the oil and the chorizo and bacon. Sauté for a couple of minutes, then add the onions and peppers and cook over a medium-low heat for 20 minutes or until soft. Add the garlic, paprika and chilli and cook for another couple of minutes, then add the rice. Stir the rice into the juices (this is the only time you will stir it), then add the stock and season. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer and cook for 15 minutes or until there is only a little liquid left and the rice almost tender.

Meanwhile, wilt the spinach in the last tbsp of oil and season. Scatter the spinach over the rice and tuck in the pork pieces. Check for seasoning, then reduce the heat to its lowest, cover and leave for 5 minutes. Squeeze lemon juice over the top and serve.

Original recipe from Food from Plenty by Diana Henry, Mitchell Beazley, 2010.)

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Pork, Roast Squash, Apple & Chestnut Salad

Could there be a more autumnal dish? We went completely overboard with a roast pork last weekend and have been searching for great recipes to use it all up. Love your leftovers!

Wine Suggestion: Pork and apples are a happy match for a good Chenin Blanc. Tonight we had Bernard Fouquet’s, Domaine des Aubuisieres Vouvray Silex. Fresh and appley to complement the salad with a lovely clean, dry finish; a soft and friendly wine with good persistence and layers of texture.

Pork, roast squash, apple and chestnut salad – serves 4

For the salad:

  • 50g butter
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground ginger
  • 1kg squash or pumpkin, peeled and cut into slim wedges
  • 2 tsp caster sugar
  • 2 apples, halved, cored and cut into wedges
  • 100g cooked chestnuts (vacuum-packed work fine)
  • 100g spicy pork sausage, cut into chunks
  • 200g leftover cooked pork, cut into chunks
  • 25g hazelnuts, toasted (roast for 20 minutes or so until they smell toasty, the skins will rub off easily with a clean tea towel)
  • 150g watercress or baby spinach

For the dressing:

  • 1½ tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • a tiny bit of Dijon mustard
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 3 tbsp hazelnut oil (we didn’t have any hazelnut oil so used extra virgin olive oil instead)

Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/gas mark 5.

Melt 25g of the butter in a saucepan. Add 3 tbsp of the olive oil, the cinnamon and ginger. Put the squash into a roasting tin and drizzle over the spicy mixture, tossing to coat. Season the squash, then sprinkle over half of the sugar. Roast for 25 minutes, or until tender and slightly caramelised.

Whisk the dressing ingredients together in a bowl, seasoning with salt and pepper.

Melt the rest of the butter in a large frying pan and sauté the apples until golden. Add the chestnuts and heat through, then set aside. Add the rest of the oil to the same pan and sauté the sausage until cooked and nicely browned, then add the pork and heat through – a few toasty brown bits on the pork will taste good too. Season.

Toss the warm squash with all the salad ingredients and the dressing.

(Original recipe from Food by Plenty by Diana Henry, Mitchell Beazley, 2011.)

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Conchiglie Rigate Piccanti

This pasta sauce is rich and full of flavour and works best without cheese, so don’t be tempted to add any. A new favourite for us and great for using up sun-dried tomatoes.

Wine Suggestion: Pico Maccario make some delicious Barbera and their entry “Lavignone” is a benchmark for the Asti region (Piedmont). Not only does it work with this dish, but we’d suggest versatile for many other dishes and occasions; a crowd pleaser and very food friendly.

Conchiglie Rigate Piccanti – serves 4

  • 5 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 80g pitted Kalamata olives, halved
  • 1 hot red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
  • 80g sun-dried tomatoes in oil, drained and finely chopped
  • 300g pork mince
  • 300g passata
  • 400g conghiglie rigate (medium shell pasta)

Heat the oil in a medium saucepan over a medium heat and fry the onion and olives for a couple of minutes, stirring now and then.

Add the chilli, sun-dried tomatoes and the pork mince and continue frying for another 6 minutes.

Stir in the passata and gently simmer, uncovered, for 15 minutes. Keep stirring every couple of minutes. Season with salt and remove from the heat.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta in plenty of salty water according the timings on the pack. Drain and tip back into the saucepan.

Pour the sauce into the pasta pan and stir over a low heat for 30 seconds to combine.

(Original recipe from Gino’s Pasta by Gino D’Acampo, Kyle Books, 2010.)

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Nasi Goreng

This is just the dish for leftover roast pork. We freeze the right quantity and enjoy it a week or too later after a busy day – it’s really quick to throw together.

Wine Suggestion: there’s a vibrant immediacy to this dish and likewise we chose a Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, in this case the Doctors’ SB from Forrest Estate; dry, full flavoured and ripe but only 9.5% abv.

John Forrest pioneered this technique and it’s a brilliant addition to the wine world so we can drink lower alcohol levels and yet keep the same ripeness and flavour profiles.

Nasi goreng – serves 4

  • 2 tbsp groundnut oil
  • 1 onion, halved and sliced 1cm thick
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely sliced
  • 2 red chillies, halved, deseeded and sliced
  • 300g leftover cooked pork, chop into little chunks
  • 400g cooked rice
  • 4 scallions, sliced on the diagonal
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • 100g cooked, shelled prawns
  • 4 tbsp dark soy sauce

Heat 1½ tbsp of the oil in a large frying pan or wok. Add the onion and cook over a medium heat until soft, golden and starting to tinge. Add the garlic, chillies and pork and cook for a couple of minutes – let the pork colour a bit. Add the rice and spring onions – toss lightly and cook until heated through.

Meanwhile, quickly heat ½ tbsp of the oil in a nonstick frying pan and add the eggs. Cook as you would an omelette and when cooked cut into ribbons with a sharp knife.

Add the egg, prawns, soy sauce, salt and pepper to the rice and keep cooking for another 2 minutes to heat everything through, then serve.

(Original recipe from Food from Plenty by Diana Henry, Mitchelle Beazley, 2012.)

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Leftover Pork Pie

We love a Sunday roast but when it’s just the three of us we often end up with heaps of leftovers. Diana Henry has a book called Food from Plenty which not only contains recipes for roasts but lots of ideas for what to do with the excess. We made this pie with leftover Mallorcan Spiced Pork. Serve with a green salad or buttery cabbage.

Wine Suggestion: as this is a very down to earth dish the wines that work have a grounded earthiness. A well made, terroir driven Chardonnay or Pinot Noir would be our choice. Tonight is was the Deux Montille Rully Chaponniere which was floral, citrus and pear aromas on the nose, but sappy, earthy and textural on the palate. Pure, fresh and engaging; a good combo.

Leftover Pork Pie – serves 6

  • 2 leeks, trimmed and cut into 3cm lengths
  • 25g unsalted butter
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 6 streaky bacon rashers, chopped
  • 2 small or 1 medium eating apple such as Cox, halved, cored & sliced
  • 450g leftover cooked pork, cut into chunks
  • 200ml cider or apple juice
  • 300ml chicken stock
  • 2 tsp Dijon mustard
  • 3 tbsp flat leaf parsley, chopped
  • 25g brown or white breadcrumbs
  • 350g puff pastry
  • plain flour, to dust
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten

Melt the butter in a sauté pan and cook the leeks, onions and bacon over a medium heat until starting to brown. Add the apple slices and cook until they too have coloured slightly.

Add the pork to the pan with the cider or juice, stock and mustard. Season and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, add the parsley and breadcrumbs and stir.

Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas mark 6.

Put the pork mixture into a pie dish and leave to cool a bit. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface. Cut strips off the pastry to stick round the edge of the pie dish. Lightly wet one side of the pastry strips and press down on the rim of the dish. Lay the remaining pastry on top and press down. Trim off the excess pastry and crimp the edges. Use any leftovers to decorate the top. Make a few slits in the centre with a sharp knife. Use a blunt knife to knock up the sides of the pastry all the way round to help it rise. Brush with egg and bake for 20 minutes or until golden and puffed up.

(Original recipe from Food from Plenty by Diana Henry, Mitchell Beazley, 2010.)

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Mallorcan Spiced Pork

This spiced roast pork by the Hairy Bikers is a really good value roast and feeds lots of people. We served with Tumbet (a Mediterranean vegetable bake) but it would also be great with any seasonal veg. If you have leftovers we recommend this easy pork chilli.

Wine Suggestion: Richer, oaked white wine to work with the richness of the pork. We opened a bit of a treat, the Tyler Santa Barbara County Chardonnay from California and it was beautiful.

Mallorcan Spiced Pork – serves 6 to 8

  • 2-2.5kg boned pork shoulder, rolled and skin scored (ask your butcher to do this)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • 2 onions, thickly sliced

FOR THE RUB

  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 red chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fennel seeds, lightly crushed
  • 4 cloves, ground
  • ½ tsp black peppercorns, crushed
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp sherry vinegar
  • salt

FOR THE GRAVY

  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 100ml white wine or fino sherry

Preheat the oven to 230C/Fan 210C/Gas 8.

Mix all the ingredients for the rub together and season well with salt. Use your hands to cover the pork with the rub, pushing it into the scores. Wipe off any excess, then rub the pork with the tbsp of oil and pour over the lemon juice. Sprinkle the skin with salt.

Scatter the onion over the base of a roasting tin and put the pork on top. Add 250ml of water. Roast the pork for 30 minutes, then reduce the heat to 180C/Fan 160C/Gas 4 and continue to roast for 25 minutes per 500g.

Remove the pork from the oven and leave to rest, lightly covered with foil, for at least 15 minutes. Strain off the liquid from the roasting tin and wait for it to settle, then skim off the fat.

To make the gravy, sprinkle 1 tbsp of flour over the roasting tin and stir well over a medium heat to scrape up any sticky bits from the tin. Add the wine or sherry and mix to form a paste. Add the skimmed pan juices and thin with some more water if you need (you can also do this in a pot).

(Original recipe from The Hairy Bikers’ Mediterranean Adventure by Si King & Dave Myers, Seven Dials, 2017.)

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Pork Chilli

We love cooking roasts on a Sunday and are often left with heaps of leftovers. This is an easy chilli which uses cooked pork – perfect for mid-week.

Wine Suggestion: We think that youthful, juicy and medium bodied reds are a good match here. For us it was a Joven Rioja made by Martinez Bujanda which is finely judged to celebrate the fruit without over-powering tannins. Chilled in the fridge for half an hour too.

Leftover Pork Chilli – serves 4

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stick, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 red pepper, cut into 1cm cubes
  • 1 yellow pepper, cut into 1cm cubes
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • ½ tsp cayenne pepper
  • ½ tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 400g tin chopped tomatoes
  • 400ml beef stock
  • 500g cold roast pork, in 2cm cubes

Heat the oil in a large, heavy saucepan with a lid. Fry the vegetables over a medium heat for 5 minutes or until softened.

Add the spices and oregano and cook for a minute, then add the tomatoes and stock. Season.

Bring to the boil, then turn down to a low simmer and cook, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Add the pork, cover, and cook for another 30 minutes.

Serve with rice.

(Original recipe from Family Kitchen Cookbook by Caroline Bretherton, DK, 2013.)

 

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Honey glazed baked ham

We love baked ham and don’t know why so many save it only for Christmas. It’s great for Sunday lunch with champ, cauliflower cheese and greens and there is always loads leftover for sambos (that’s sandwiches for the non-Irish).

Wine Suggestion: lucky us had a bottle of the Jamet IGP Syrah from the Northern Rhône.  Jamet is a top producer of Côte Rôtie, which Jono’s company imports, and the Syrah is their joyful entry level wine which is allocated in small lots. We get an allocation of 6 bottles which we happily buy each time a shipment arrives, we wish we could get more. Works perfectly with the ham too.

Honey-glazed baked ham – serves 4 to 6

  • 1 x 1.75g gammon joint
  • 1 onion, roughly chopped
  • 1 carrot, roughly chopped
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 12 black peppercorns
  • 200ml freshly squeezed orange juice
  • 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 2 tbsp light brown sugar

Soak the gammon in cold water overnight, then rinse well and put into a large saucepan. Cover with fresh cold water and add the onion, carrot, bay leaves and peppercorns. Bring to the boil slowly, then cover and simmer very gently for 1½ hours, skim off any white froth from the surface now and then. Remove from the heat and leave to cool in the liquid.

Heat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.

Remove the gammon from the liquid and cut away the rind leaving a thin layer of fat. Score the fat in a diamond pattern and put the joint into a small roasting tin, then pour in the orange juice.

Mix the mustard, honey and sugar together and season generously with black pepper, then smear all over the gammon. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until caramelised. Leave to rest in a warm place for at least 20 minutes, then carve.

(Original recipe from ‘Neven Maguire’s Complete Family Cookbook, Gill Books, 2016.)

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Chickpea & Rainbow Chard Pork

We made this with some fabulous rainbow chard from one of our best friends’ vege patches. So simple and super tasty.

Wine Suggestion: Find a youthful Tempranillo with little or no oak influence, juicy fruit and not too much extraction (tannins). Chill it for 30 minutes and enjoy. Our choice, the Paco Garcia Rioja Seis.

Chickpea & Chard Pork – serves 4

  • 400g pork fillet, seasoned with salt and black pepper
  • 1 x 480g jar of roasted red peppers in brine, drained and diced into 1cm cubes
  • 300g rainbow chard, finely sliced including the stalks
  • 1 heaped tsp of fennel seeds
  • 1 x 660g jar of chickpeas

Heat a large shallow casserole over a high heat. Put 1 tbsp of oil into the pan along with the pork and sear for 5 minutes, turning over halfway (you can cut it in half if it fits easier).

Remove the pork from the pan, then add the fennel seeds, peppers and chard to the fat left behind. Stir fry for a couple of minutes before pouring in the chickpeas and their juice. Season, stir well and bring to the boil. Nestle the pork in to the chickpeas so that it’s touching the bottom of the pan and pour over any juices from the plate. Cover and simmer gently for 12 minutes or until the pork is just cooked through, turn the pork over now and then as it cooks.

Rest for 2 minutes, then slice the pork and check the chickpeas for seasoning. Add a splash of red wine vinegar and a drizzle of oil before serving.

(Original recipe from ‘5 Ingredients’ by Jamie Oliver, Penguin, 2017.)

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Pork tenderloin with madeira & sage

We cooked this just before we went on holidays and were determined not to buy any ingredients that needed used up. We have a huge sage bush in the garden that we definitely under-utilize and there are always bottles of all sorts of beverages lurking in the back of our cupboards. Madeira lasts forever, even when opened which is very useful.

Wine Suggestion: The madeira sauce with the sage is richer than you may expect and we find it works with juicy Côtes du Rhône reds, especially with a good dollop of Grenache. We had an uncomplicated Reserve des Armoiries which was juicy and had hints of Southern French spices made without oak; complimentary and almost celebratory of our impending holiday with its joyful fruit.

Pork tenderloin with madeira and sage – serves 4

  • butter
  • 1 pork tenderloin c. 400g
  • 100ml madeira
  • a small bunch of sage, leaves picked and chopped

Heat the oven to 220C/Fan 200C/Gas 7.

Heat a knob of butter and a splash of olive oil in an ovenproof frying pan. Season the pork and brown really well on all sides to form a crust. Add the madeira then transfer to the oven and cook for 15-20 minutes.

Remove the meat from the pan, cover with foil and leave aside to rest for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, reduce the pan juices with another knob of butter on a low heat, and season.

To serve, cut the pork into thick slices, then dress with the pan juices and lots of chopped sage.

(Original recipe by Alex Szrok in BBC Olive Magazine, May 2016.)

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Ginger pork stir-fry

A light and tasty stir-fry to use up bits of veg leftover from the weekend. Feel free to use what you have rather than the suggestions below and prep all the ingredients before you start as this takes minutes to cook. Serve with rice or noodles.

Wine Suggestion: If you can find it, the Zind Humbrecht Muscat Grand Cru Goldberg 2013, was an amazing match. This is a truly astonishing wine that confounds the stereotype of Muscat because of the terroir and winemaker, being fresh, vibrant and dry. Alongside the ginger and soy this danced a fine line of complementary and contrasting flavours.

Ginger Pork Stir-fry – serves 4

  • 25g root ginger, peeled and cut into thin matchsticks
  • 1 tbsp finely grated root ginger
  • 2 tbsp sunflower oil
  • 200g pork fillet, trimmed and sliced into 5mm slices
  • 2 large cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed/grated
  • 150g carrots, peeled and finely sliced
  • 150g purple-sprouting broccoli or small broccoli florets
  • 1 red or yellow pepper, finely sliced
  • 75g kale (stalks removed), shredded
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1-2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 3 tbsp roughly chopped coriander (leaves & stalks)

Bring a small saucepan of water to the boil, add the sliced ginger and boil for 1 minute, then drain.

Get a wok or a large frying pan smoking hot, then pour in the oil and stir-fry the boiled ginger for 30-60 seconds, remove with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper.

Add the pork, garlic, grated ginger and carrots. Stir-fry for 2 minutes or until the pork is cooked, then add the broccoli and peppers.

Keep frying for another minute, then add the kale and toss for briefly to wilt.

Finally, add the sesame oil, soy sauce and chopped coriander. Toss together quickly then serve over rice or noodles and garnish with the crispy ginger.

(Original recipe from Rachel’s Everyday Kitchen by Rachel Allen, Harper Collins, 2013.)

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Kassler roasted with cabbage & potatoes

Our mate Brett got us this genuine Kassler, a pork loin expertly cured and lightly smoked by Ed Hicks in Dun Laoghaire. If you can’t find Kassler use a smoked bacon loin or rack and prepare yourself for the best bacon & cabbage ever.

Wine Suggestion: We chose a classic white Burgundy, 100% Chardonnay made in oak from a winemaker in Meursault, Patrick Javillier. He makes a couple of Bourgogne Blanc’s from a couple of very particular sites in Meursault and boy are they good. This time we chose his Cuvée Oligocene which is a vineyard partly in Meursault and partly in the ordinary Burgundy classification (despite it being the same soils and aspect). This makes this wine a bargain and we love it.

Roast Bacon with Cabbage & Potatoes – serves 6-8

  • 1kg potatoes, peeled and quartered
  • 450g savoy cabbage, cored and roughly chopped
  • 1kg boned kassler/smoked bacon loin or rack
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter

For the Sauce

  • 25g unsalted butter
  • 1 tbsp plain flour
  • 600ml chicken stock
  • 50ml Madeira or Port
  • 1-3 tbsp Dijon mustard

Pre-heat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.

Put the potatoes into a large saucepan, cover with cold salted water, bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes, then drain.

Par-boil the cabbage in another large pan of lightly salted water for 2 minutes. Drain into a colander and refresh with cold water, then use your hands to squeeze out the excess water.

Put the bacon into a large roasting tray and place in the oven. Roast for 10 minutes before adding the butter. When the butter has melted, add the potatoes and roast together for 20 minutes, turning the bacon & potatoes in the butter now and then.

Now push the potatoes and bacon to one side and add the cabbage. Season the potatoes and cabbage with salt and roast for another 10 minutes, turning everything in the smoky butter.

Meanwhile, make the sauce by melting the butter in a small pan and adding the flour. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally, then take off the heat and whisk in the chicken stock until smooth. Place back on the heat and simmer for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.

After 40 minutes in total remove the bacon from the oven and check that the potatoes and cabbage are cooked. Transfer the vegetables to a warm serving platter, then slice the bacon and arrange on top. Keep warm.

To finish the sauce, de-glaze the juices in the roasting tin with the Maderia or Port and add to the sauce. Whisk in the mustard and season to taste with salt and pepper.

(Original recipe by Paul Rankin.)

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Tandoori pork burgers

This was such a tasty weeknight dinner inspired by a half-used jar of tandoori curry paste and a packet of supermarket naan breads. Ditch the naans for gluten-free burgers.

Wine Suggestion: A juicy Spanish, or Spanish varietal, should work here. There are some great and good value Garnacha’s, like one made by Bodegas Monfil, which are perfect when on a budget. If you want to push the boat out choose a ripe and juicy Ribera del Duero made from Tempranillo. Our favourite of the moment is the Carmelo Rodero and try their 9 Mesas for the juicy youthful fruit. Older and more concentrated Crianza’s and Reserva’s would overwhelm the dish.

Tandoori pork burgers with tomato & coriander raita – serves 4

  • 500g lean pork mince
  • 1 red onion, grated
  • 2 tbsp tandoori curry paste (we like Patak’s)
  • a small bunch of coriander, chopped
  • 150ml natural yoghurt
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • 4 scallions, sliced
  • naan breads, to serve
  • Little Gem or Cos lettuce, to serve

Put the mince, onion, curry paste and half the coriander in a bowl, season with mix well, then form into 4 burgers.

Barbecue the burgers for 4-5 minutes on each side or until cooked through. Meanwhile, mix the rest of the coriander with the yoghurt, tomatoes & scallions.

Serve the burgers in some warm naan breads (we toasted ours on the barbecue) with the crispy lettuce and raita.

(Original recipe by Janine Ratcliffe in BBC Olive Magazine, August 2009.)

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Rillette & cornichon on scallion toastWe can’t resist those little plastic tubs of pork rillettes found in the fridge section of French supermarkets. Here’s what happened the end of the tub we brought home. No more rillettes until next year… unless we try making it ourselves of course.

Wine Suggestion: because we brought the rillette back from the Loire, a good Chenin Blanc was called for. The Chateau Hureau Samur Blanc “Argile” was rich and full while still being dry and textured enough to work with the fatty pork and sour pickle of the cornichons. Lighter dry wines might taste weak in comparison so make sure the wine you choose is good enough to stand up to the flavours of the dish. If you want to push the boat out a good, aged sweet chenin blanc, like a Bonnezeaux or Vouvray Moelleux with luscious botrytis would also be superb.

Pork Rillettes & Cornichons with Onion Sourdough – serves 2

  • 2-3 scallions
  • 4 slices of sourdough bread
  • pork rillettes
  • small handful of cornichons

Put 2-3 scallions in a food processor with 5 tablespoons of olive oil and some seasoning, then blitz to a paste. Soak the sourdough in this green oil.

Fry the bread in a non-stick pan until very crisp on both sides. Drain on kitchen paper, then spread 2 slices with the rillettes and add a few sliced cornichons. Top with the remaining slices of toast and drizzle with any remaining onion oil.

(Original recipe from Eat by Nigel Slater, Fourth Estate, 2013.)

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Roast Pork Loin, Porchetta Style – serves 6

Our favourite way to eat this pork is carved as thin as possible and stuffed into crusty bread rolls with some mayonnaise and salad. You need to marinate the meat the night before.

Wine Suggestion: Rich, round and white plus you have to make sure there is a good freshness too to cope with the pork fat. Naturally a good, oaked Chardonnay calls out but we’ve also tried some more unusual wines like the Adi Badenhorst’s Family White which is an amazing blend of 10 grapes from the Swartland in South Africa. It’s quite like a St Peray white in style with hints of aromatics, stone fruit and crisp apples alongside a rich nuttiness and layers of texture. A bit of a wine anoraks wine but we love it.

  • 2kg loin of pork, off the bone with skin removed and about 1cm of fat left on
  • 6 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 3 tsp fennel seeds, crushed
  • 4 rosemary sprigs, leaves chopped, plus more for the roasting tin
  • about 8 bay leaves

Lay the pork on a board with the flesh side up. Pierce all over with a sharp knife and fill the holes with the slivers of garlic. Rub the fennel & rosemary all over the flesh, along with some olive oil, pushing some into the holes with the garlic. Season generously with salt and pepper. Made a bed in a roasting tin with rosemary springs and bay leaves and put the pork on top with the fat side down. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Bring to room temperature before cooking.

Preheat the oven to 200ºC/425ºF/gas mark 7.

Tie the loin at intervals with kitchen string, not too tight. Put into the roasting tin fat side up on top of the herbs (make sure the herbs are well tucked under or they will burn) and cook for 25 minutes. Reduce the oven temperature to 180ºC/350ºF/gas mark 4 and cook for 1 hour 40 minutes, basting occasionally.

Take out of the oven, cover with foil and rest for 15-20 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

(Original recipe from Food from Plenty by Diana Henry, Mitchell Beazley, 2010.)

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