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Slow-Roasted Belly of Pork with Magners Cider and Caramelized Quince Recipe


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Pork belly is an extremely fatty cut of meat. Cooking the belly slowly allows the fat to render down; this rendered fat then helps to baste the meat.

Turning up the oven towards the latter stages of cooking results in a crisp skin, not dissimilar to that of cracklings, or skin, on a pork roast.

While Wade Murphy, executive head chef at The Lodge at Doonbeg in County Clare, Ireland, likes to serve this roasted pork with caramelized quince, you could also serve the pork with baby potatoes, roasted with lots of butter and parsley, and Savoy cabbage, sliced thinly and sautéed with spring onions and small pieces of diced apple.

Ingredients

For the pork:

  • 2 ½ pounds (1 ½ kilograms) deboned pork belly
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • Salt, preferably Maldon
  • 1 onion, thickly sliced
  • 1 carrot, roughly chopped
  • 1 stick celery, roughly chopped
  • About 1 ½-¾ cups (400 milliliters) hard cider, preferably Magners or Bulmers Irish Apple Cider
  • 2 cups (500 milliliters) beef stock
  • 1 bouquet garni (2 sprigs fresh thyme and 3 parsley stems wrapped in cheesecloth)
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 cloves
  • Freshly ground black pepper

For the quince:

  • 2 quinces
  • 3 tablespoons (45 grams) unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 2 tablespoons hard cider (see above)

Directions

For the pork:

Preheat your oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit/230 degrees Celsius.

Using a very sharp knife, score the skin of the pork at 5 millimeter intervals. Take care not to cut all the way through the fat to the meat. Boil a kettle full of water (about 10 cups) and pour it over the skin. Throw away the water and pat the pork dry. This will help the skin crisp up during the cooking. Rub the pork with the canola oil and sprinkle with salt.

Place the vegetables in a roasting dish and put the pork on top, skin side up. Pour the cider and stock around the meat. Add the bouquet garni, bay leaf, and cloves. Season with salt and pepper. Roast the pork in the center of your oven for 20 minutes, or until the skin is brown and crisp. Reduce the oven to 275 degrees Fahrenheit/140 degrees Celsius and cook for another 2 ½ hours. If the meat begins to get too brown, cover it with foil to prevent it from getting any darker in the last 45 minutes.

Remove the pork from the oven, transfer it to a plate, and leave in a warm place to rest. Strain the contents of the roasting dish through a fine sieve and place in a pot. Bring it to a boil over high heat and reduce the liquid, skimming all the time, until the sauce thickens and becomes syrupy, about 8-10 minutes.

For the quince:

Peel the quince and cut in half. Cut each half then into 3 slices and remove the cores. Melt the butter and the sugar in a large heavy-bottomed pan over medium heat. Place the quince in the pan and pour over the water and cider. Bring to a boil then reduce to a simmer. Cover the pan with a tight-fitting lid and cook very slowly for 1 ½ hours. Occasionally stir the mixture to make sure it is not burning. Cook the quince until it is very soft but still holds its shape.

Remove the lid from the pan and increase the heat for 2 minutes, stirring all the time. The quince will caramelize and all the liquid will evaporate. Keep the quince mixture warm.

To serve, carve the meat into thick slices and place on a serving dish. Pour over the reduced sauce and serve with the caramelized quince.


Best pork belly recipes

Our easy pork belly recipes are cheap and easy to make. Want to make the best crisp pork belly? Looking for the perfect Sunday roast centrepiece ? Make one of our recipes with our expert guide to the perfect crackling for your pork belly .

We have slow cooked pork belly recipes, roast pork belly recipes (think rolled ‘nduja-stuffed pork belly, slow-roast pork belly and smoked salt-crusted pork belly), Chinese pork belly recipes and a recipe for rich pork belly ramen. We even have a recipe to make homemade pork scratchings! Roast it, braise it, fry it – the choice is yours…

Ingredients

Get it right: roast pork belly

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Pork Tenderloin with Roasted Quince

With a pleasantly sweet-tart taste and enticing aroma, quince is best eaten when cooked. Allow it to caramelize, along with yams and shallots, for a tasty side to roasted pork tenderloin that's anything but run-of-the-mill.

Ingredients

  • 1 pork tenderloin, silver skin removed
  • 1 tablespoon chopped thyme
  • 1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 yam, peeled and cut into 2-inch wedges
  • 2 quinces, peeled and cut into wedges
  • 2 shallots, sliced thin
  • 3 ounces mixed greens

Preparation

Heat oven to 400°F. Season the pork with the thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper. Heat a large cast iron or heavy-bottomed, oven-safe sauté pan on medium-high heat. Add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Sear the tenderloin until well browned on all sides.

Add the yam, quince and shallots in a single layer next to the pork and place the entire pan in the oven. Let roast for 5&ndash7 minutes or until the pork reaches an internal temperature of 145°F. Remove the pork from the pan and let rest.

Toss the quince and yam and place back in the oven until both are tender and caramelized. Toss the mixed greens with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and season with salt and pepper. When the quince mixture has caramelized, place on a serving plate, topped with the pork tenderloin and accompanied by the mixed greens.


Nettle and Quince

The long story of the slow-roasted pork shoulder starts in 1998, when I acquired my first cookbook: the River Cafe Cookbook Two (Yellow). The word at the time was that this wonderful cookbook not only had delicious recipes, but that they all worked. Indeed, this and the other River Cafe Cookbooks have been my number one go-to cookbooks over the years. I love the recipes and they always worked out very well.

For these past twelve years, the recipe for a slow-roasted shoulder of pork has smiled up at me, enticingly, from page 248, but I never tried it. One of the reasons was that I rarely ate pork, and never cooked pork, mainly because I could not find good pork. Until I discovered it at Union Square market Flying Pigs Farm has single-handedly transformed me into a cooker of pork.

But I still didn’t make the slow-roasted pork shoulder. After so many years, the recipe seemed frozen in the forbidding aura of “I will make this one special day” dishes.

As I recently became somewhat fixated on slow-roasted lamb shoulders, and slow-cooked things in general, I gathered the necessary momentum to try the promising, melt-in-your-mouth, delicious slow pork. And it didn’t work. The recipe calls for “dry roasting” on an open rack in the oven. The flavor was amazing and the crackling skin predictably perfect, but the meat wasn’t falling off the bone. It was tasty and not forbiddingly dry, but not what I had expected. Since I had only been able to cook it the minimum suggested amount of time (8 hours), I decided that must be the problem. So I tried again. I cooked the second pork shoulder some 18 hours. Same result.

Rather than try to cook it even longer (the recipe says 8-24 hours), I decided to look elsewhere. Surely Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall must have a failproof slow-cooked pork in his River Cottage Meat Book. Alas, the recipe basically starts: “Actually, versions of this dish have already been enthusiastically championed by both the River Cafe and Nigella Lawson” and proceeds to give the same cooking method. Not helpful.

Now I really did acknowledge that the problem must be me, but I just wasn’t convinced that cooking the pork even longer would have done the trick, and how many pork shoulders need I bungle before the winter is over?

So I perused my cookbook shelves for a different recipe, one that cooked pork in a closed dish. And, not surprisingly, found it with David Chang. His cookbook Momofuku‘s pork shoulder for ramen has a simple salt/sugar rub, but I was looking for cooking time and temperature.

The answer is 6 hours at 250°F (120°C). It was perfect.

The quantities below are for a piece of meat of approximately 6 lbs (3 kg). The seasoning should be adjusted according to size, but the cooking time remains the same.

Note from March 2012: I have revised the cooking method. I believe starting the pork on low is a better guarantee to completely and deliciously tender meat, and finishing on high assures a crisp outside.

1 bone-in pork shoulder or butt

2 Tbsps Maldon sea salt (1 Tbsp if using regular salt)

Freshly ground black pepper

3 small dried red chilies

Preheat the oven to 250°F (120°C).

In a mortar, crush the garlic together with the salt, add the fennel seeds, a generous amount of back pepper, the crumbled chilies, and mix with the olive oil to create a thick paste.

Remove the skin and trim some of the fat. Cut deep, long gashes into the pork on all sides. Fill the gashes with the herb/spice mixture and rub all over the pork and place in an ovenproof dish with a lid (such as a Le Creuset dutch oven), then pour the lemon juice over the pork.

Cover with a tight fitting lid (or seal with aluminum foil) and cook in the low oven for 5 to 6 hours, basting occasionally.

(Optional: Finish by increasing the oven to 450°F (230°C), take off the lid, and brown on high heat for 20 to 25 minutes.)

Remove from the oven and let the meat rest for about 30 minutes before serving.

Note: Like most slow-cooked dishes, this pork will taste even better reheated. So if planning ahead, cook the pork on low the day before for about 4 1/2 hours to 5 hours. Let it cool slowly and once cold place it in the refrigerator. On the day you plan to serve the dish, reheat the meat at 250-300°F (120-150°C) for about 45 minutes, then turn up the heat to crisp up the outside as shown above — 450°F (230°C) for 20 to 25 minutes, as needed.

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This entry was posted on 2 March 2011 at 11:14 and is filed under Fall, Meat / Poultry, Seasonal, Spring, Summer, Winter, Year-round. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

28 Responses to “Slow-roasted pork shoulder (or butt)”

This is interesting. I’ve been making the River Cafe Slow Roasted Pork for years. I always roast it for between 15-18 hours in a roasting pan, basting with the lemon juice occasionally, and it always turns out perfectly. I can understand why your original roast didn’t cook in 8 hours, as it seems to NEED the extended hours to cook properly, when doing an open roast. I typically use the long-roasted pork for a casual party, placing the meat on a big platter with a fork or a pair of tongs, and people pull apart their meat making street tacos, with grilled corn tortillas, cilantro, onion and a nice spicy salsa. It is DREAMY made like this, the edges crusty and caramelized with the fennel/garlic rub, the meat deeply complex in flavor. It is always the star of the show.

I tried your method last night, wanting, this time, to use the meat to make pulled pork sandwiches for my family tonight. I cooked it overnight, for 7 hours (it’s 10 lbs.), in a dutch oven with a lid, and it was perfectly cooked, falling off the bone. But it is a VERY different result than when I roast it according to the River Cafe recipe. The flavor isn’t as complex, and the fat renders very differently when cooked like this. This is going to be perfect for my sandwiches, and was a much simpler affair to roast for only 7 hours, but I REALLY recommend that people try the 18 hour slow-roast for a different experience it is SUBLIME. (Really, the recipe suggests 12-18 hours…I’ve always done 15-18.)

Jenne Marie thank you so much for your comment. That’s really interesting and has convinced me to try the original recipe again!

When reheating it in the oven, do I cover it?

Yes, I usually cover it when reheating.

This is a great recipe! Thanks!!

This recipe is great thanks!

Thanks very much, Athena, I’m glad you like it.

I have made this several times and it turns out perfectly each time. I have done it in the slow cooker on low all day or high for 4 hours. I absolutely love this dish. Leftovers are good as filling in tacos!

It’s so nice of you to say, thanks for the comment melonbobber!

I made this last night and my husband said it was the best pork he ever ate! Super moist. We cooked it in a Le Creuset dutch oven at 250 for 6 hours. It was 6.7 lbs (bone in). We did not brown it before. It didn’t need browning at the end. The meat fell off the bone and it melted in our mouths. The bottom was almost carmelized! We did a creamy polenta and sauteed spinach as sides and a Central Coast (Calif) Pinot and it went really well.

Jennifer, thank you so much for your comment, I’m thrilled to hear it turned out so well. The other day I made the pork with creamy polenta too (and oven-roasted carrots) – it was the perfect complement!

Well I cooked it and it turned out brilliantly.We used a de-boned hunk of shoulder just under 7lbs and I would suggest taking up to an hour off the cooking time for a de-boned joint, and using one less lemon for anything less than 7lbs, but that is just one man’s opinion. The meat was juicy, tender and tasty. I served it with your lentil recipe, alongside stir fried bok choy and mange touts. The lentils were fantastic too – will definitely be doing them again and can’t wait to try them with a fried egg. The one question I have is how smooth the paste should be that you make at the beginning of the recipe – I wasn’t sure how crushed the garlic and fennel seeds should be…?

I am so glad you enjoyed it, and thank you very much for the feedback.
The paste I made was pretty coarse as I don’t mind finding fennel seeds in the meat and sauce, but it’s really up to you. If you prefer the fennel well ground, that should be done separately.
About the cooking time – your point is well taken, in fact I’ve even been wondering whether it might be better to start the cooking slow, perhaps even in a cold oven, and end on high heat to crisp up the outside. Most recipes do it the other way around (as I described in the recipe), but I’ve been thinking about testing it the other way. When I do I will give an update.
Thanks! Valerie

Hi Valerie.This looks fantastic! I want to cook it this weekend and have a couple of questions:
– Do you trim the fat at all or does this dish get a nice crackling on it?
– I take it the meat sits in its own juices the whole time, rather than sitting on a rack?
– Do you baste it with lemon juice?

Hi and thank you for your questions.
-You should trim off the skin and some of the fat (I have now added this point to the recipe, thanks!). There will be a nice crust on the pork but to get proper crackling you would need to cook the shoulder without a lid, and I found it very hard to get meat that is super tender and melting that way. Toward the end of the cooking time, check what the meat looks like. Depending on the dish you use it may have browned nicely or not so much. If you would like more of a crust, remove the lid and leave it open for the last half hour or so.
-The meat sits in the bottom of the dish, though it would be fine on a rack as well, since in any case the juices don’t not cover the whole piece of meat.
-Yes, baste the meat with the juice, adding additional lemon juice if necessary.
Hope it turns out well – do let me know. Best, Valerie

Hi- this looks great! How many people does it serve? And what do you usually serve as a side? Thanks!

Thank you for your comment! For the quantities I defer to my favored pork breeder Flying Pigs Farm . They suggest counting 3/4 lb per person for bone-in shoulder, or 1/2 lb per person for the boneless butt. As sides I love simply braised bok choy and lentils, or polenta and leafy greens. The pork is intensely fragrant and needs something fairly sober, otherwise the flavors will compete with each other.

Thanks! I am serving 12 people so I guess I will get around 8lbs. Also, I didn’t think to ask this in my previous comment- I want to make it the night before and reheat for the party. Does it really taste just as good the next day? And should I shred it right after it cooks, or wait til I reheat it?
Thanks again!

Yes! It’s a great idea to make it the night before as it really will taste better once reheated. Let it cool then store in the fridge, and reheat in a low oven (250 to 300°F). I would leave it whole and cut (or shred) before serving. Enjoy and do let me know how it was.

I love when I find the perfect combination for a recipe using all the resources available to me. Great job with this – it looks fantastic!

Thank you very much for your comment, I hope you enjoy the recipe!

Yum!! This looks DIVINE! Totally bookmarking this!

Great blog happy I found you!

Thank you for the kind words!

Oh how cruel. and me in the land of no-pork…
I think this summer will be a pork themed summer…sardines and pork… we need to find a good pig farm!

Pork, sardines, mussels, artichokes, far, kouing amann…

I think Claudia found a good pig farmer – he goes to Loguivy market and his farm is outside Plouaret. We will have to go.

This is also a nice dish with a Cuban marinade of crushed cumin, olive oil, crushed chillies, crushed garlic, lime or lemon juice, and orange zest. Basically it’s the same technique, except all ingredients are added to the marinade, so it’s a thin paste due to the lime juice, and the pork marinates between 6-24 hours.


Beautiful Roast Duck with Crackling, Crispy Skin

How do you like your duck? I’ll take mine a number of ways. On the bone. Off the bone. Just the breast with a simple honey sauce. But if we’re talking about the whole duck, then I have to have it slow roasted until the skin is so crispy, sweet and glossy that it dissolves on your tongue with the first bite.

Who would have thought that such delicious duck was possible, and easy to make at home?

This duck never got a big reveal under a silver dome. We just ripped right into it and devoured it.

The first time I had duck served this way was at the Four Seasons in New York City. Seated in the pool room, I felt like such a fake, self-conscious of being completely out of place at this chic magazine tycoon hangout dressed up to the nines in my suburban mom best. I could have been sitting at the very table where the fate of Gourmet was decided! But once the duck arrived, I forgot about where I was and what I was wearing, completely overcome by how good it was. I was hooked from the beginning of the duck ceremony: the maitre d’ came over to carve, removed the silver cover and revealed the bird, in all its glory.

My home kitchen is a far cry from the Four Seasons pool room, but one bite of the crispy duck transports me back there.

I didn’t think this type of beautiful whole duck was possible or attainable at home, but then I discovered The Hungry Mouse and her easy How to Roast a Duck recipe. Perfect duck no longer requires a trip to New York City and a reservation at the Four Seasons. If you have an afternoon at home, a roasting pan with rack, and a duck, then you’re just a few hours away from duck perfection.

Score the duck skin in a cross hatch pattern to ensure maximum crispness

And that roasted duck perfection is a pretty amazing dinner to serve. You’ll get compliments galore, and no one needs to know that the duck basically cooked itself. All you did was place it on the rack, flip it four times, and brushed it once with a sweet glaze. But who needs to know you only flipped the bird? A little extra praise never hurt anyone.

With the extra fat in the pan, you might want to whip up some duck fat potatoes, leaving nothing to waste on the bird.

Save any leftover pan drippings to make duck fat potatoes. Or you can render any extra skin to get pure white duck fat. Just a word of warning: you’ll need a fair amount of skin to yield enough fat for a batch of potatoes.

I’m adding the recipe here, in my own words, but do go check out The Hungry Mouse write up. She has gobs of great pictures and you’ll see the process step by step in great detail. Her glaze is also different than mine. I wanted nothing spicy in our duck to keep it a crowd pleaser for all the kids.


Recipe Summary

  • Poached Quinces
  • 1 teaspoon five-spice powder
  • 2 teaspoons minced peeled fresh ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 (12-ounce) packages boneless whole duck breasts, thawed and cut in half
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon thinly sliced green onions

Reserve 4 quince quarters and 3/4 cup poaching liquid from Poached Quinces. Reserve remaining quince quarters and liquid for another use. Cut 4 quince quarters into cubes set aside.

Combine 1/2 cup reserved poaching liquid, five-spice powder, ginger, and garlic in a large zip-top plastic bag. Add duck to bag seal and toss to coat. Marinate in refrigerator at least 24 hours or up to 2 days, turning bag occasionally.

Remove duck from marinade discard marinade. Sprinkle duck evenly with salt and pepper. Heat a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Place duck, skin side down, in pan cook 1 1/2 minutes or until skin is golden brown. Turn meat over cook 1 minute. Place pan in oven. Bake at 400° for 15 minutes or until a thermometer registers 160° (medium) or until desired degree of doneness. Remove duck from pan, reserving 2 teaspoons drippings in pan. Place duck, skin side down, on a cutting board or work surface. Brush meaty side of duck with remaining 1/4 cup poaching liquid.

Heat reserved drippings in pan over medium-high heat. Add cubed quince quarters sauté 5 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from heat stir in sliced green onions.

Remove skin from duck discard. Cut duck diagonally across grain into thin slices. Divide duck slices evenly among each of 4 plates top each serving with 1/4 cup quince mixture. Serve immediately.

Wine note: These duck breasts have it all--sweetness from the Poached Quinces, richness from the duck, and spiciness from the five-spice powder. Is there one wine that can act as a perfect counterpoint? Yes: pinot noir. A top pinot will have the acidity to balance the richness of the duck while possessing grace notes of ripe fruit and spiciness to mirror the quince and five-spice powder. A terrific choice: Alderbrook Pinot Noir 2002 from California's Russian River Valley ($24). -Karen MacNeil


Chocolate lovers, prepare to have your mind blown - this fudgy dark chocolate sheet cake is about as decadent as they come. Grated beetroot gives it a beautiful richness, whilst also adding a sneaky boost of nutrients!

What we eat has a huge impact on how we feel, so it's important to fuel ourselves with foods that will benefit our bodies and minds. These 10 recipes are packed with ingredients that can relieve stress - perfect for when you need a mental boost.

Food To Love | Mar 30, 2020


Thomas Keller’s Ad Hoc at Home, Recipes – Because You Know You’re Getting the Book Anyway

It started out as a simple google search to verify an in-store appearance/book signing of his brand new cookbook Ad Hoc at Home released this month, but somewhere around “blowtorch,” I took a distracted turn, immediately got tangled up in a web of results, and then spent all of the daylight hours of Friday and pretty deep into the darkness of Friday night thrashing my way through my special, psychotic, web-food-point-oh version of Amazing Race.

I made it out alive. Barely.

And with a tiny treasure, too.



That is if 18 19 21 of the 200 recipes from Ad Hoc at Home all available in one place (here) is considered a treasure.

It is. It is a treasure! Just tell me it is so I don’t go crying hot tears of wasteful shame into the bowl of buttery, fatty feelings, aka TKells’ Butter Poached Marble Potatoes, that I will eat to cope.

Yes, I spent the better (and worse) part of Friday hunting down every single recipe from Ad Hoc at Home that is reprinted on the web, or at least on the web as deep as page 34 of search results. It wasn’t the actual searching for recipes that took time. Google collected 12 million findings in 0.12 seconds and I filtered out 18 in the two hours between lunch and afternoon snack. However, while 18 recipes (plus the one for Blowtorch Prime Rib Roast I did myself, and more coming in as time goes on) seems insignificant in the grand scheme of TKells’ 200, copying, pasting, linking, double checking, downloading, cropping, uploading and formatting 18 links and images takes, well, and entire uninterrupted Friday.

Apparently, the cookbook does not have a formal Table of Contents, but Grub Street took on the task of typing one out. I’ve organized my findings into an outline based on their list. As a special treat, all of the images in the grid link to a recipe, too, same order left to right, as below.

And if the only recipe you could ever hope and dream for is one that involves a blowtorch, well, here you go.


Mains

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Watch the video: Roast Spiced Pork Belly with Apple Sauce by Everyday Gourmet Chef Justine Schofield (January 2022).