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June 26, 2011

Baked Pork with Oranges (and very crispy crackling)

Baked pork with oranges

This dish is a reminder as to why Elizabeth David is such a legend. Her recipes always work, and they always taste amazing. I turn to her books when I need something dependable and delicious. This dish is so handy as you can start it early and then only have to worry about it again 15 minutes before dinner.

This is my (very slight) adaptation. I cook for real crackling- lovers and thus do it separately: the only way to get it evenly crisp I think, without drying out the meat.

  • Olive oil
  • 2kg pork tied in butcher’s style. I used a roll from Waitrose, that combined loin and shoulder. Then both the white and dark- meat- lovers are satisfied
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1- 2 sprigs rosemary, chopped
  • 2 sprigs thyme, picked
  • 200ml chicken stock
  • 3 oranges
  • 50ml white wine
  • Sourdough or baguette breadcrumbs (normal white loaf, I don’t think, will be the same) 
    1. Preheat the oven to 200C.
    2. Remove the skin and fat from the pork roll. If it is not slit already, make long incisions with a sharp knife. Place it flesh- side down on a baking tray and salt liberally with normal table salt. After a while, you will notice that water drops have formed. Soak them up with a piece of kitchen towel and salt again. I leave the skin next to me and repeat the process 5 or 6 times throughout the afternoon.
    3. Now for the meat. Rub the joint all over with olive oil. Cut a clove of garlic in half and rub on the meat. Sprinkle the chopped herbs over and season well with salt and pepper. Place in a deep, snug- fitting ovenproof dish along with the garlic. Pop into the oven for 15 minutes. In the meanwhile,  heat up the stock.
    4. After the 15 minutes, add the hot stock and reduce the temperature to 150C. Cook for 2 ½ - 3 hours, basting with the stock every now and again. 
    5. 15 minutes before the end of cooking time, add the juice of half an orange and the wine. Pat the breadcrumbs on top.
    6. Bake the pork fat for 5- 10 minutes just to dry it out again.
    7. Put the grill on in the oven (if you have 2 ovens, great for you, otherwise wrap the pork in foil and let it rest while you make the crackling, it only takes a few minutes). Remove the meat from the oven and cut according to the incisions into thin strips. Now return the strips to the oven, flesh- side down and right under the grill. Keep your eye on them. They’ll blacken in a cinch. Slice the remaining oranges into thin slices and blanch in boiling water for 2- 3 minutes. Place them around the meat in the oven.Serve with the oranges alongside and the gravy from the dish. Elizabeth recommends serving it cold, but ours was warm and tasty just so. 
    8. To accompany, I did silky vegetables and grilled aubergines with olive oil, basil and lemon marinade. 
My very-nearly-blackened-but still-delicious-crackling

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