stuffed roast pork

this stunning yet simple recipe uses what is known as pork middle, consisting of belly and loin together. You need the meat to be in one piece because you are going to stuff it, roll it and tie it up.

When you order your pork, ask for a boned section of belly and loin in one piece from a middle weighing about 2kg. Ask your butcher to score the skin. The fat from the pork belly gives this dish a tender juiciness. You will end up with a mountain of crispy pork, complemented by a luxurious, fruity stuffing. This recipe works best if you lay the pork on a rack above a tray. This way, it will crisp up all over. You will also need some string (make sure you use string that won't melt in the oven).

Serves 6

1 pork middle
fine sea salt and black pepper
dried rosemary and sage

for the stuffing:
1 small onion, finely diced
1/2 tbs butter
100g minced pork
25g chopped dates
25g chopped cranberries
100g chopped dried apricots
60g breadcrumbs made from fresh white bread (pulse in the food processor)
40ml cognac
zest of 1 orange
1 Bramley apple, diced quite small

lay the pork middle skin side up on a large plate or tray, and cover with a thin layer of fine sea salt. Rub the salt deep into the cracks. After 2 hours, wash the salt off thoroughly and pat the meat dry.

to make the stuffing, fry the onion in the butter for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl and leave to rest in the fridge for an hour or two. Preheat the oven to 240C/gas 9. Turn the meat over so the skin side is on the kitchen surface. Mould the stuffing into a sausage and press it into the nook between the eye of the loin and the belly section. Roll the meat up tightly and tie it with string in at least 4 places, with the knots at the bottom.

splash a bit of olive oil into a bowl and add a teaspoon each of dried sage and dried rosemary, plus some salt and pepper. Rub this mixture all over the outside of the pork with your fingers. Roast the meat for 20 minutes, then turn down the heat to 180C/gas 4 and cook on for a further 1 hour and 40 minutes.

serve with roast potatoes, red cabbage, chipolatas and Brussels sprouts mixed with bacon lardons.

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posted by ramtops on 12 Dec 06 - 11054 views


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