Don’t be fooled into thinking that this looks burnt… it’s crispy caramilsed skin with Scrumpy cider gooeyness is perfect for a winters Sunday afternoon. I took inspiration from Nigella’s recipe in her Kitchen book of ‘Beer-braised pork knuckles with caraway, garlic, apples and potatoes’. Unfortunately I didn’t really like the beer with the pork and so I amended to include cider, and think this works much better.
1 x 1.20kg boneless pork shoulder
2 teaspoons caraway seeds
2 cloves crushed garlic
2 teaspoons sea salt
2 white onions sliced in to rings around 1cm thick
500ml Scrumpy/flat good quality cider
4 large baking potatoes chopped in to chunky wedges
2 cox’s apples chopped in to chunky wedges
– serves 4 –
1. Mix together the salt, garlic and caraway seeds, then dry the pork and score its skin. Preheat the oven to Gasmark 7
2. Rub the salt mix in to the pork, making sure to get it in to all of the cracks.
3. Place the onions on the bottom of a baking tray, and then sit the pork on top of it, skin-side up.
4. Pop the pork in to the oven for half an hour
5. Remove the tray from the oven and turn the heat down to Gasmark 4. Quickly scatter the potaoes and apples around the pork, and pour 250ml of the cider over the top of the pork.
6. Return the pork to the oven and leave to cook for an hour and a half.
7. Remove the pork from the oven, turn the oven up to Gasmark 7 and pour over the remaining cider and return to the oven for half an hour.
8. Remove everything from the tray, then place the baking tray on the hob – pour in 500ml water and str with a wooden spoon, scraping off all of the juicy blackened sweetness from the bottom of the pan. Once hot and bubbling, sieve and serve in a gravy jug.
9. Carve the pork, giving everyone a nice bit of crunchy crackling, and a good helping of the potatoes, onions and apples. Serve with some green veg, and the delicious gravy.