Once again I’ve succumbed to a Jamie recipe. I can’t really envisage roasting a joint without first consulting either Jamie or Delia, it just makes me feel more secure in what I’m doing. No doubt I’ll be able to wean myself off them in the fullness of time but for now I’m going to keep them around as my safety blanket.
I went in search of a recipe for a large joint of pork that I could have cooking for most of the day without too much intervention. As soon as I saw this 6 hour recipe I knew it was the one for me and then I just needed some accompaniments which I ran with myself; roast potatoes and braised red cabbage.
- 2kg shoulder of pork, bone-in, skin on
- Sea salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 red onions, halved
- 2 carrots, peeled and halved lengthways
- 2 sticks celery, halved
- 1 bulb garlic, skin on, broken into cloves
- 6-8 bay leaves
- 600 ml water or vegetable stock
Method of Preparation:
- Preheat your oven to 220°C/425°F/gas 7.
- Place your pork on a clean work surface, skin-side up. Get yourself a small sharp knife and make scores about a centimetre apart through the skin into the fat, but not so deep that you cut into the meat. If the joint is tied, try not to cut through the string. Rub salt right into all the scores you’ve just made, pulling the skin apart a little if you need to.
- Brush any excess salt off the surface then turn it over. Season the underside of the meat with a few pinches of salt and pepper. Place your pork, skin-side up, in a roasting tray and pop in the preheated oven. Roast for 30 minutes, until the skin of the pork has started to puff up and you can see it turning into crackling.
- At this point, turn the heat down to 170°C/325°F/gas 3, cover the pork snugly with a double layer of tinfoil, pop back in the oven and roast for a further 4 and a half hours.
- Take out of the oven, take the foil off, and baste the meat with the fat in the bottom of the tray. Carefully lift the pork up and transfer to a chopping board. Spoon all but a couple of tablespoons of fat out (save it for roast potatoes!).
- Add all the veg, garlic and bay leaves to the tray and stir them into the remaining fat. Place the pork back on top of everything and return to the oven without the foil to roast for another hour. By this time the meat should be meltingly soft and tender.
- Carefully move the meat to a serving dish, cover again with tinfoil and leave to rest while you make your gravy. Spoon away any fat in the tray, then add the water or stock and place the tray on the hob. Bring to the boil and simmer for a few minutes, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon to scrape up all those lovely sticky tasty bits on the bottom of the tray. When you’ve got a nice, dark gravy, pour it through a sieve into a bowl or gravy boat, using your spoon to really push all the goodness of the veg through the sieve. Add a little more salt and pepper if it needs it.
- Serve the pork and crackling with your jug of gravy and some lovely roast potatoes (as a treat, you can try roasting them in the fat you spooned out of your roasting tray).
Oh my gosh! What a delicious piece of pork this makes. It was so easy too. My joint was a 2.5kg, boneless pork shoulder and it worked just beautifully with this method. The pork just fell away from itself and the crackling was great as well. We just plonked it into the middle of the table surrounded with roast potatoes and braised red cabbage and it went down a treat, especially when covered in the gravy. This was an absolute winner and a dish I’d happily prepare again next time we have a few people over for Sunday lunch.