Recently I was invited to take part in producing a dinner time recipe by the Central England Co-Op. The best bit was that I wasn't limited in what I could come up with; I was given free range to produce an amazing plate of food for you, so I chose to do one of my all time favourite meals - a good old Sunday roast! Come and share my creation and enjoy!
2kg Pork shoulder joint.
5ml Sea Salt
For the gravy
400ml Pear Cider
80ml Double cream
Black pepper to season
For the pears
10ml Rapeseed Oil
15ml Demerara sugar
1. Heat your oven to 180C/160C fan.
2. If not already done by your butcher, score the skin of the pork through the rind, but not right the way through to the flesh.
3. Pat the skin dry, then season with the salt and rub in well.
4. Tuck pieces of the thyme into some of the slashes in the rind.
5. Peel and quarter your onions and use these as a 'trivet' in the base of your roasting pan.
6. Place your pork joint on top of the onions, add 250ml of water and cover tightly with foil.
7. Place in the oven and cook for 3-3½ hours until the meat is cooked through.
8. Remove the meat from the oven, along with the onions.
9. If you want to make crackling, then at this point, turn the oven up to 220C. Cut through the strings securing the pork joint and cut the rind away from the flesh.
10. Cover the meat and onions with foil and allow to rest for 30 minutes.
11. Place the pork rind on a wire rack in the oven and cook for 20-30 minutes until it has bubbled up and is crispy.
12. Add the pear cider to the roasting tin over a medium heat and stir to remove all the residual flavours (you'll often hear this called 'de-glazing' the pan).
13. Transfer the gravy to a saucepan and bring to the boil, and then add the cream and reduce to a simmer. Don't worry if it starts to look as if it's splitting, it will come back together as it reduces.
14. Allow the gravy to simmer gently, stirring occasionally. Season with freshly ground black pepper, to your own personal taste.
15. Meanwhile, melt the butter and the oil in a pan then add the demerara sugar and stir through.
16. Quarter the pears lengthways and remove the core (I left the skin on mine).
17. Gently heat the butter and oil then cook the pears until they're tender.
18. Using two forks, 'pull' the pork apart (rather than slice it). You'll find that it's lovely and tender and will do this easily.
19. Serve the pulled pork with the pears and the pear cider gravy and a piece of crackling.
20. I accompanied mine with gorgeous, crispy, roast potatoes and freshly steamed broccoli.
I was sent £25 of food vouchers from the Central Co-Op with which to create my meal recipe. I also purchased additional pears and apples, along with some vanilla ice cream and made a crumble for dessert.