Tag Archives: pork

Roasted Pork with Red Onions and Balsamic Potatoes

2 Nov

I tried that recipe last year in London, they use pork all the time, from bacon for breakfast til sausages for dinner!

You may think about Fish & Chips when you travel to the UK but trust me, pork is also omnipresent! As I am not very used to cook pork, I went through a pile of cooking book and realized that the best way to succeed was to follow Jamie Oliver recipe.

I found it in Jamie at Home:

His recipes are simple and honest and he really makes it easy for anybody who does not know how to cook or just try a recipe for the first time.

My concern was to overcook/undercook the pork which in both case is a disaster but in the end I succeeded. That’s why I wanted to share that recipe with you. The Balsamic component makes it really different from the traditional roast pork and potatoes or the recipe from Normandie in which you use cream, apple and cider. You all start to know how much I love Mediterranean dishes… once again, let’s bring a touch of Italian flavor!

Basically, I did not change a lot of things from the cookbook as everything went well! I also add Jamie’s note….

“This dish has attitude – it uses a lot of balsamic vinegar but, trust me, it works really well. The onions and potatoes are baked in the vinegar, making them crispy, dark, sticky and sweet. I’ve chosen to serve them with roast pork, but beef or lamb works just as well. I prefer red onions for their color and sweetness.”

Ingredients for 6-8:

For the Potatoes

  • 1.5kg baby potatoes washed
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • olive oil
  • 200g butter, cubed
  • a bunch of fresh rosemary, leaves picked and chopped
  • 1 whole bulb of garlic, quartered or smashed
  • 5 medium red onions, peeled and quartered
  • 350ml cheap balsamic vinegar

For the Pork

  • a small bunch of fresh rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp freshly ground fennel seeds
  • 1.5kg boneless rolled pork loin, preferably free-range or organic, skin off, fat scored in a criss-cross pattern
  • olive oil
  • 6 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • 1 medium red onion, peeled and quartered
  • 2 sticks of celery, trimmed and chopped
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 2 glasses of white wine
  • extra-virgin olive oil



Preheat the oven to 200C/380F.

To prepare the meat, scatter a handful of finely chopped rosemary leaves over a large chopping board. Sprinkle over some salt, pepper and the ground fennel seeds. Roll the pork across the board, pressing down hard so all the flavorings stick to it.

Get a roasting tray large enough for your pork and place it on a hob over a medium-high heat. Drizzle with olive oil and place the pork in, fat side down, sprinkled with any flavorings remaining on the board.

After a few minutes, when the pork fat is lightly golden, turn it over and add the garlic cloves, onion, celery and bay leaves to the tray. Place on the bottom shelf of your preheated oven for an hour, basting it halfway through. (For the last 20 minutes of cooking, you might need to cover the pork with greaseproof paper to stop it coloring too much.)

Get another roasting tray, into which you can fit the potatoes in one layer. Pour a glug of olive oil into it and add the butter, rosemary and garlic. Toss the potatoes in all the flavors.

Add the onions and all the balsamic vinegar and season with salt and pepper. Place the tray on the top shelf of your oven and cook for about 50 minutes, until the potatoes and onions are dark, sticky and crispy – removing the tray to toss the onions and potatoes halfway through.

After an hour, the meat should be cooked. Prick it with a sharp knife – if the juices run clear, it’s done; if not, pop it back in the oven for another 10-15 minutes, keeping the potatoes warm.

Remove it from the oven and let it rest on a plate for 10 minutes. Pour away most of the fat from the tray and mash up the garlic and onion. Place the tray over the hob and add the wine. Simmer until the liquid has reduced by half, scraping all the meaty goodness off the bottom to make a tasty sauce, and season if necessary. Pass through a sieve into a serving jug. Then slice the pork and serve it with the baked onions and potatoes, drizzled with the pan juices.

Great with some nice greens or a rocket salad… as usual!


An Asian Feast

29 Jan

For the last dinners I have organized at home I tried new ideas and new techniques. I tried the wild flavor of the Hot Smoked Paprika from Spain then I felt like a Magician playing with a crazy amount of spices to cook Indian food. Yesterday, I was in an Asian Mood…. I had tried one of Nigel Slater‘s pork recipe from is book Real Food and it was really yummy! That’s why I decided to do it again with a few other easy Asian dishes. Here is the menu… and the recipes!

Menu: serves about 6 people

Mango and Sugar Snap Peas Salad with a Ginger and Lime Dressing

Molded Pilaf Rice with Grilled Coconut

Pork with Cashews, Lime and Mint from Nigel Slater Cookbook

Mango and Sugar Snap Peas Salad with a Lime and Ginger Dressing


  • 500g of sugar snap peas
  • 1 mango firm not ripe in order to cut nice squares
  • 2-3 spring onions
  • coriander and/or mint, chervil
  • 1/4 cup of cashew nuts
  • Sesame oil
  • kecap mani sauce (sweet soy sauce)

Ingredients for the Dressing

  • 2 limes juice and zest finely grated
  • 2-3 cm of fresh ginger, peeled and finely grated
  • 1/2 red chili seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 1/2 tsp of palm sugar or honey if you don’t have it


First prepare your ingredients.

Wash the sugar snap peas and cut them into 2-3 stripes with an angle to give them a nice shape.

Peel the mango and cut 2 thick slices along the stones then cut the slices into 2-3 cm squares.

Mango peeledMango Diced

Wash the spring onions and finely slice them with the same diagonal angle.

Wash the herbs and chop or slice them finely. If you are using them later, put a wet piece of kitchen towel on top of it to prevent them from getting dark.

In a wok or large frying pan, toast the cashew nuts until golden brown. Because the nuts are oily, you need to toast them to release the flavor.

Add 1-2 tsp of kecap mani sauce or honey on top of it and stir them until well coated. The sauce will caramelize around the cashew nuts. Pour the cashew nuts on a silicon mat or a piece of parchment paper.

In the same pan while it’s still hot, add a little sesame oil and pour the sugar snap peas in the wok. Fry them quickly as they need to remain crunchy. The leftover of kecap mani will caramelize the edges of the peas.

After 2-3 minutes, pour them in a container and let them cool down.

Then add a little sesame oil in the wok and quickly fry the mango cubes. Because the mango is not ripe, the cubes will not tear apart and they will keep their shape.

Set aside and let them cool down.

While that time, prepare the sauce. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl and depending on your taste, add more palm sugar for the sweetness or lime to make it more sour.

Just before serving, mix together the sugar snap peas, mango, spring onions, herbs, cashew nuts and the sauce, place them in a nice serving dish and decorate with a few remaining chopped herbs.

Molded Pilaf Rice with Grilled Coconut

Ingredients for the Pilaf Rice

  • 2 cups of Basmati Rice
  • 5 cups of hot water
  • 1 chicken/veg stock cube dissolved in the hot water
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove finely chopped or crushed
  • salt and pepper
  • groundnut oil
  • grilled coconut

Method for the Pilaf Rice*

In a deep medium frying pan, pour a little oil and start to gently fry the onions then add the garlic and keep on frying until golden brown.

Add the rice and cook it until it becomes translucent. Stir it to avoid it sticks to the pan.

Then add the stock on top of it, some salt and pepper and stir it just one time. Bring it to a gentle boil. Cover it and let it cook for at least 20 minutes.

When the rice is cooked, (just taste it to check, it has to be tender) either put the pan in the oven if it is oven proof or keep on cooking on a very gentle heat.

It will slowly create a nice crust of rice at the bottom of the pan.

Just before serving, you can add some grilled coconut on top of the rice to have it at the bottom and as for a cake, turn the pan upside down on a serving plate. The rice should come out easily and keep the shape of the pan.

Add some grilled coconut on top and serve it.

* You can have a lot of fun with the pilaf rice and give it the taste that you want. For example, you can add some spices to the onions such as curry, cinnamon, cloves, cardamom and make it more Indian like.

You can also replace half of the stock with coconut milk or infuse Jasmine Tea instead of stock cube.

You can add fresh herbs, toasted nuts, chopped vegetables.

Indeed, this recipe is just a base that you can adapt to the main dish you are cooking.

Pork with Cashews, Lime and Mint

from Nigel Slater Cookbook


  • 800g-1kg of pork fillet
  • 60ml of groundnut oil
  • 2 handful of cashew nuts or peanuts
  • a bunch of spring onions finely chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic or 2 shallots finely chopped
  • 8cm of ginger peeled and finely chopped
  • 4 red chillies seeded and finely sliced or chopped
  • 60ml of nam pla (Thai fish sauce)
  • a bunch of mint leaves finely chopped
  • a bunch of basil finely chopped


Start by preparing all your ingredients. Chop the onions, ginger, chillies and cashew and set aside for later. Chop the herbs and keep them in a wet kitchen towel so that it does not get dark.

In a large wok or frying pan heat 1 tbsp of oil and seal the whole pork fillet until it gets golden brown. Turn the fillet upside down to get the other side the same golden brown color. If the fillets are thick, do the same for the sides that are still raw or barely cooked.

Once it’s done, set the meat and its juice aside. Cut the meat into thin strips about 7-8mm and keep the juice that comes out when you are cutting it.

Return the unwashed wok to the heat, add 2 tbsp of oil in it and as soon as it is hot, add the spring onions, garlic, ginger and chillies. Fry the whole mix and stir constantly for about 2 minutes. Set aside.

Just before serving, reheat the unwashed wok and pour 1 tbsp of oil in it and when it’s hot, quickly fry the slices of pork and pour the mix on top, stir it then add the nuts, the meat juices, the lime juice and the fish sauce. Stir it for about 2 minutes then stir in the herbs.

Serve immediately.