This post summarises most of my cooking and also where I get the most satisfaction from it. I cooked a meal which I will entitle Autumn Orange Pork and it had some key characteristics:
2. It was unplanned
3. I had no recipe
4. Until I tasted it I wasn’t sure how it would go
5. I’ll eat it again. Points 2,3 and 4 mean this is by no means guaranteed with me.
It began with Sunday chicken dinner. We had roast chicken and I decided to do some roasted vegetables as a side dish. I had a butternut squash that had been lying around for a while and so I chopped it into pieces and added potato cubes, red onion and courgettes. Whenever I make something like this I make a big batch because it’s time consuming and is so versatile. After forty minutes with a little turning (careful with the courgette) and a decent temperature they were cooked but I decided to add a can of chopped tomatoes. In hindsight I wish I’d added some chickpeas too. After twenty more minutes I was happy…my Autumn “ratatouille” was complete. It tasted earthy and by not adding garlic or chilli it was still a vegetable side dish that didn’t overpower the chicken.
A couple of days later I tried a butcher that had been recommended – Paul Crowe. He makes very good pies but I also liked the look of the pork steaks and so I bought a couple. After pan frying them in butter and olive oil until they were browned nicely I decided to go with an orange and honey combination. A tablespoon of honey, a dash of orange juice and plenty of salt and pepper created a really nice thick sauce with the juices in the pan and finished the pork nicely.
I just reheated the ratatouille with some sliced red chilli and the meal was done. The pork was superb and the orange and chilli combination with the sweet taste of onion and butternut squash was great.