Sunday, 16 October 2011

roast pork belly with apple and fennel

i love those lazy Sunday's when time seems to slow down slightly and the autumn sun streams in through the windows highlighting dust motes that dance like fairies in the draft as The Viking or Holly shuffle past... I could spend countless hours curled up with a good book and a cup of tea knowing that the chores I have yet to do are my favourite kind such as chopping wood ready for the approaching colder nights or slamming a pork belly joint into the oven... ahh, if only every day could be this day...

...on another topic entirely, there are one or two little things yet to be completed in my kitchen and then I promise I will reveal all... truth be told, I would be happy to show you now but The Viking wants every last detail complete... picture perfect before we reveal the perfect picture ... but here's another sneak peak for all of you who have been so patient..

roast pork belly with apple and fennel
there's something about the aniseed quality of fennel that works in perfect harmony with the apples in this classic roast pork dish... simple, clean and perfectly slow roasted to compliment my slow roasted Sunday!

1 small joint of pork belly - ask your butcher to score the fat, unless you have a particularly sharp knife... all mine are bloody useless!
2 medium cooking apples - quartered
2 small onions - halved
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
olive oil
salt flakes

- pre-heat your oven to as high as it will go, 220C or so

- liberally salt the fat side of the belly, really rubbing it in to the score marks

- roast in the hot oven for 30 minutes until the skin is crackling perfection

- take the joint out of the oven and set to one side, turn the oven down to about 160C

- place the apples and onions into the dish (you could put potatoes in at this stage too, or any other root veg and sprinkle with olive oil and fennel seeds, then place the pork joint back on top of the apples

- slow roast in the oven for another hour and a half

- let it stand for about 15 minutes before carving and scoop up the apples, which should now be fluffy and moist, for a delicious ready-made apple sauce.

eat and of course, enjoy!



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