Mexican crisp pressed pork with prunes, sherry vinegar and cauliflower cream

This richly flavoured pulled pork is pressed into rounds then fried in breadcrumbs.


For the prunes
For the persillade
For the braised pork
For the pressed pork
For the cauliflower couscous
For the cauliflower cream
To serve
  • 2-3 tbsp baby cress or herbs, such as parsley or coriander

  • pork scratchings

Preparation method

  1. For the prunes, heat the vinegar in 300ml/11fl oz water then pour over prunes with the sherry. Leave to soak overnight.

  2. For the persillade, blend together the breadcrumbs and parsley until fine textured, add the crushed garlic, lemon zest and salt and mix through.

  3. For the braised pork, preheat the oven to 140C/275F/Gas 1.

  4. Heat the oil in a large heavy based pan. Add the onions, carrots, celery, leeks, garlic and thyme and cook, stirring occasionally, until caramelized all over.

  5. Add the white wine and Madeira to the pan and scrape the cooked bits from the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Simmer until reduced in volume by half.

  6. Add the stock, cardamom, star anise, orange zest, apple purée and tomato juice.

  7. Bring to the boil, add the pork shoulder and belly, return to the boil then cover and place in the oven for 3-4 hours.

  8. When tender and cooked through, remove from the oven and allow to cool down slightly.

  9. While the meat is still warm, remove it from the cooking liquor and pull the meat into small strands using your hands or two forks.

  10. Put this pulled meat into a bowl with some of the fat from the cooking liquor. The cooking liquor can be reserved: make a sauce by simmering some of the liquor to reduce it in volume to sauce consistency ready for serving.

  11. For the pressed pork, season the pulled pork with the chopped chillies, coriander, shallots, malt vinegar, salt and freshly ground black pepper. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

  12. Roll out two large layers of cling film onto a clean work surface. Place the cooked, seasoned meat in a line, approximately 5cm/2in deep, 4cm/1¾in high and 15cm/6in long, leaving a space at each end.

  13. Wrap the meat in the clingfilm, then roll the clingfilm into a tight sausage shape and tie each end securely.

  14. Prick all over with a sharp pointed knife. Refrigerate until set.

  15. Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.

  16. Cut the chilled cling film roll into 5cm/2in wide cylindrical shapes.

  17. Remove the cling film and brush the meat with beaten egg all the way around the rounded sides of the roll, but not the flat ends, then roll in panko breadcrumbs, keeping the flat ends clear of crumbs.

  18. Heat a frying pan until medium hot, add a little olive oil and colour the breadcrumbed side of the pork until golden-brown all around.

  19. Place in the oven and heat through.

  20. Remove from the oven and spread a thin layer of mustard over the top flat surface and sprinkle quite generously with the prepared persillade, then return to the oven for a further five minutes.

  21. For the cauliflower couscous, mix everything together and add salt to taste.

  22. For the cauliflower cream, heat the cauliflower, milk and salt in a saucepan until simmering and cook for 12-15 minutes.

  23. When cooked and softened, remove the cauliflower from the milk but reserve the milk.

  24. Purée the cauliflower with some of the cooking liquor and extra double cream if desired.

  25. Taste and adjust seasoning - lemon juice can be added here if needed.

  26. To serve, heat the cauliflower purée through until hot, and spread across base of serving plates, then sprinkle the cauliflower couscous onto the purée.

  27. Sit the pork in the centre of the plate on top of the cauliflower. Place three prune halves on each plate around the pork.

  28. Garnish with baby herbs, cress and pork scratchings and pour some sauce around the outside.

Overnight preparation time

Over 2 hours cooking time

Serves 4-6

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This recipe is from...

Saturday Kitchen 02/02/2013 bbc_one Saturday Kitchen

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