Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Roast Pork

Though it is reasonably simple to roast meat - or indeed vegetables - knowing other people's methoods is always interesting. We had a particularly fine piece of pork on Sunday - boned, rolled shoulder that developed a fine crackling skin around a good ridge of sweet creamy fat and wonderfully flavoured meat.

For optimum results make sure the skin is scored for the whole length of the piece. If it is not already done ask the butcher - their knives will likely be much sharper than any in the kitchen. If you forget, use a stanley knife to cut all the way through the skin into the fat but not as deep as the flesh. A good trick with pork is to unpack it when you get it home from the butcher, wash it under a cold tap, pat it dry then put it onto a plate loosely covered with greaseproof paper. Leave it in the bottom of the fridge for a day or so until you plan to cook it.

When you are ready, pre heat the oven as hot as it will go while you prepare the meat. Rinse any blood off the bottom of the joint, being careful not to moisten the rind, then pat dry. In the base of a good sized heavy roasting pan drizzle a little olive oil and strew around some slices of fresh ginger, a couple of flattened cloves of garlic and one or two chillies with a nick in the skin but not chopped (unless you are wanting really hot and spicy). Place the meat on top of the aromatics and then sprinkle the top generously with salt. Rub it well into the skin. Put the pan into the hot oven and roast for 20 minutes. Without opening the door, reduce the heat to gas mark 5 / moderate/350F and cook for another 20 minutes then take out and baste the meat. When it comes out of the oven it should already be burnished with golden crackling and it will crackle more as it continues to cook.

Continue cooking and basting till the meat is ready - 20 minutes per pound plus twenty minutes is always a good rule of thumb - that translates to about 50 minutes per kilo. Remove it from the oven, put the meat onto a warmed plate, and cover tightly with two layers of foil and allow to rest for 20 minutes at least before carving.

With this roast I had no gravy, the man had Polish horseradish and we both had a satisfying serving of roasted winter vegetables to make for a great lunch.

Equally nice cold on Monday.

1 comment:

Sofia said...

This looks really nice. And I read this post while I was hungry. Now I have to go my fridge and be disappointed ;)