I've had a couple of requests for the recipe for the slow roast pork I made last weekend, and I am as ever, happy to oblige.
Truth be told, my slow roasted pork, albeit delicious, was a bit dry. This was because I didn't use the proper cut of meat for the recipe - I used pork neck or foreloin, rather than loin of pork (which has more fat and thus stays moister during the lengthy cookign time). However, once a bit of winey gravy was dribbled over it it was great. The equally winey vegetables that accompanied it were particularly fantastic, as was the braised red cabbage (a surprise to me, as I'm not usually a cabbage-lover).
I used Stephanie Alexander's recipe for slow-roasted loin of pork with rosemary, garlic and fennel. Stephanie suggests buying the shoulder end of the loin, which, although it is fattier, retains a better flavour and tenderness. The meat is rubbed with oil, rosemary, garlic and fennel and then rolled and tied for roasting. It makes for a wonderfully aromatic roasyt which looks rather spectacular (if I do say so myself). I definitely want to try this recipe again using the proper cut of meat - Max told me the next day that he been daydreaming of the meat and gravy we'd had the night before, it was so good.
Heather, I hope that you make this and that it turns out wonderfully!
Slow-roasted loin of pork with rosemary, garlic and fennel (via Stephanie Alexander)
3 TB olive oil
2 cloves crushed garlic
2 bushy sprigs of rosemary, finely chopped
1TB finely chopped fennel leaves
1/2 loin of pork, skinned and boned
1 diced onion
2 diced carrots
2 diced sticks celery
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup of wine
chunks of potato and bulb fennel
- Preheat oven to 160°C
- In a small bowl mix 2TB olive oil with garlic, rosemary, fennel leaves and a generous quantity of pepper.
- Open out the meat and rub the flesh all over with the mixture.
- Roll meat into a bolster shape and tie with string (not plastic!) at regualr intervals. Rub any remainign mixture over the meat and sprinkle with salt.
- Place onion, carrot and celery in a large baking dish (I used a gigantic cast-iron pot and it worked wonderfully) with remaining oil.
- Position a wire rack over the vegetables and place meat onto this.
- Pour wine and water into baking dish.
- Cook for 2 hours, basting every 30mins (I huighly recommend a turkey baster- type thing for this job). Should smell heavenly.
- Drain off juice and and diced veges, strain and set aside. Discard fat that rises to the top.
- Add remaining veges to baking dish.
- Increase heat to 180°C and return meat and veges to oven for a further 1 hour, until meat is perfectly tender and veges cooked.
- Remove meat and veges to a warm plate then pour off all extra juices into a jug.
- Wait for 10 mins then skim off all extra fat.
- Make a simple gravy with all the reserved juices by putting the baking dish onto the stovetop at a medium heat and scraping up all the crusty bits from the bottom.
- Bring juicies to a bubbling boil and allow to thicken slightly. I added some more wine at this stage because I didn't have much juice in my pan.
- Pour into a warm serving jug.
- Carve the deliciously fragrant meat thickly and moisten with the gravy. Share out all the winey, savoury vegetables as well.
- We enjoyed our roast pork with braised red cabbage, garlic mash and baby rocket, but Stephanie suggests just a green salad : ) Well, the Kitschenette household must be particularly greedy then, eh?
Braised red cabbage (also via Stephanie Alexander)
3 TB water
1 red cabbage, sliced, washed, drained
2 TB brown sugar
pinch of salt
3 Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced
1/4 cup cider vinegar
- Place water, cabbage, sugar and salt into a heavy-based saucepan.
- Add apple, cover tightly and cook very gently for about 1 hour (try to ignore the cabbage smell!)
- Lift lid and stir apple into softened cabbage.
- Tip in vinegar and butter, then continue to cook until cabbage is sufficiently wilted - not crunchy, but not limp, soggy and shapeless either. I had to turn the heat up a little to get things moving along.
- The cabbage should be shiny from the butter and the apples still at least partially evident. The cabbage does turn from a brilliant vermillion to a more subdued purple, but it still tasted good.
End note: The remnants of the pork, gravy, mash and cabbage made for excellent bubble and squeak a few days later.