A Pork joint, with perfectly crunch crisp crackling covering it is a treat for the eyes, ears, nose and mouth.
This recipe calls for a loin of pork, with the bottom bone taken out, but with the top bone left in – it takes less than thirty minutes to prepare, but over two hours to cook, so plan your meal around it carefully.
To Serve 8
2.25kg Pork Loin
1 tbsp Plain Flour
275ml Dry Cider
275ml Vegetable Stock (or potato Water)
Sea Salt and Fresh Ground Black Pepper
1. Heat the oven to 240C
2. Score the skin of the Pork. It should probably be done already, but it’s always best to add a few more lines. Use the point of a knife, and score it all over – try to separate into thin lines, bringing the tip of the blade to around halfway through the fat that’s under the skin.
3. Place the pork in a tin, skin side up. Cut the onion into half, and wedge the pieces under the meat slightly. Put a tablespoon of the sea salt and press it into the skin as evenly as possible.
4. Put the tin into the oven on a high shelf, and roast for around twenty five minutes. Lower the heat to 190C and cook for a further two and a half hours – if you’ve got a smaller meat loin, cook for thirty five minutes per pound.
5. To make sure it’s cooked properly, pierce with a skewer and the juice should be completely clear, with no sign of pinkness to it. Remove the meat from the tray and leave to stand for thirty minutes before carving.
6. To make some lovely rich gravy, when the loin is cooked remove from the tray. Tip and spoon all of the fat out of the tray. Remove the charred Onion, and add the flour to the juice, and stir well. Place the tray over a medium-low heat, and stir well. Gradually increase the heat, and add the cider. Using a whisk, keep stirring until you have a smooth, rich gravy, and season to taste.
Try a variety of herbs and spices on the Crackling – Garlic, Thyme and Chillies all make a nice adjustment to the taste.