Dear Samuel, it’s your birthday today, so this one’s for you.
This is how a Five-Hour Pork Shoulder Slow Roast would look like.
Especially after being completely macerated with a pair of tongs and a cerated knife.
Okay, I screwed up the crackling on this one big time. But the meat was just perfect. It better be after five hours of baking in the oven.
- Get a hunk of pork shoulder (about 800g to 1kg) from the supermarket or butcher. If you can get it with the bone in, even better.
- I can’t comment much on how to do the crackling right. But in theory, here’s how it goes: Score the skin half a centimetre deep, and about a centimetre apart. Rub salt into the crevices.
- Season everywhere else with freshly ground sea salt and black pepper.
- Get the whole hunk of meat on a roasting dish and stick it in the oven for 30 minutes, at 220ªC. This should make a crackling happen.
- When the crackling looks right, wrap the whole dish snugly with a double layer of foil and stick it back into the oven for 4 hours, at 180*C. Go out and have a beer with the lads, or have a nap.
- Prepare some stuff to accompany the pork shoulder – carrot slices, diced onions, smashed garlic (a whole bulb, skin on) and a couple of rosemary sprigs.
- After four hours, remove the foil and set in the carrots, onions, garlic and rosemary. Baste everything in the fat rendered at the base of the dish.
- Stick it back into the oven for another half hour before serving.
It sounds like a lot of work to do, but it’s so simple for something so amazing. Tender tender goodness.
I’ve been crazy busy with packing these past few days. It’s the summer and I’m moving, that’s why. So here’s how I’ve been satisfying my fried chicken cravings.
With a pack of battered chicken dippers that I got from Iceland, your friendly neighbourhood frozen food store, I managed to get these babies crispy without having to heat up an entire oven. I don’t even know why I didn’t wanna use the oven but here’s an alternative to the traditional stick-it-in-the-oven trick.
Express Chicken Dippers
- Straight from the freezer and into a wok on the hob, toss the dippers in frozen.
- Turn up the heat to full whack. Put a lid on. TIP! Doing this keeps the moisture in, steaming the dippers.
- After a couple of minutes, get them out and chop them into bite-size pieces. (There is no need to perform this step; I have an obsession with cutting my food into bite-size pieces.)
- Flip them about every couple of minutes.
- Get them out once they start to brown.
- Let them cool a little before chowing down, you don’t wanna burn your tongue, like me.
Or, you can always just use the oven.
If you haven’t heard or seen this before, you must absolutely try it out sometime. Bacon-Wrapped Chicken Fillets will knock your socks off.
Depending on how many you’d like to make, this is what you’ll need for just a humble TWO pieces. But you know you’ll definitely want more.
Two ingredients, two simple steps, for two awesome chunks of meaty goodness.
- 2 streaks of smoked bacon or pancetta.
- 2 fillets of chicken, cut into pieces two inches long
- Put a piece of chicken on one end of a streak of bacon and roll it to the other end.
- Stick it into the top rack of the oven at 180°C for about 20 minutes, flipping it at midpoint.
TIP! If you wanna be a tad more adventurous, sprinkle a dash of thyme, rosemary or basil across each streak of bacon before rolling.
Also, this goes fantastic with a potato mash and gravy. More on that next time.
I am a complete sucker for chicken. Using hands and getting dirty somehow adds to the flavour of the food. Fried chicken is what usually gets me going, but oven baked ones are awesome too. For this, it’s best you marinade it overnight, in a bag, in the fridge.
This is for 6 pieces of Honey Baked Chicken Thigh.
- 1 generous lug of white wine
- 1 tsp of dried rosemary
- 1 tbsp of honey, or 2 if you want
- 2 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
- 1 tsp of dark soy sauce, for colour
- 1 tsp of olive oil
- 1 pinch of salt
- 1 pinch of pepper
- Get your chicken into a ziplock bag.
- It doesn’t matter if the chicken portions are frozen or not, just make sure they’re not stuck to each other.
- Get all that stuff of marinade into the bag with the chicken.
- Take care to get every bit of meat covered in the marinade.
- Stick it in the fridge overnight.
- The chicken should have thawed through beautifully and at the same time, have absorbed all that sweet goodness of your marinade. Get your chicken on a tray, skin side up and cover with foil.
- In a pre-heated oven of 220°C, stick the tray in for 45 minutes.
- After the buzzer goes, remove the foil and turn the temperature down to 180°C. Leave the tray in there for another 15 minutes or so, or until the skin turns golden.
- TIP! Not sure if it’s cooked through? Poke in with a fork. If it’s cooked, the juices will run clear, not red.
- Let it rest for a couple of minutes.
- Serve, without cutlery.