I’m not really a tea drinker. If there was no tea in the world it would not affect my mood in the slightest. No coffee? Well, I don’t want to even contemplate that.
I may not be a tea drinker but I don’t mind tea in other forms. I’ll quite happily have a slice of fruity tea loaf or another helping of this jasmine tea marinated pork. Just as long as I don’t have to drink it, I’m happy.
Tea? No thanks. Plain pork chop? That’s also a no but put them together and you get quite a different response. Admittedly the flavour’s not just tea. There’s sugar for sweetness, balsamic vinegar to add a bit of a zing and garlic because well, garlic goes well in everything. Well, everything savoury.
But, back to talking about pork and jasmine tea. I was curious about how much you would be able to taste the tea in the marinade. After all, tea is not such a strong flavour compared to balsamic vinegar. Luckily you could still taste it. It wasn’t overpowering but it was enough to know it was there. That’s what I wanted of course. Otherwise it would just be a balsamic vinegar and garlic marinade and that doesn’t sound half as interesting flavourwise. Ok, I know I said I didn’t like tea but just a hint of tea flavour is good and not everyone likes tea. It’s good to know you can make this for the non tea drinkers you know too.
As it isn’t a strong marinade, I do think it would be interesting to add a little bit of fresh chilli next time to give a bit of heat and an extra dimension to the whole dish. Maybe even a little ginger too to bring out the oriental side of the dish. After all, Jasmine tea does come from China.
The recipe is from Tea Chef but the quantities have been altered a little.
Ingredients – Serves 2 (but you could serve more people by adding more pork but the same amount of marinade up to 4 people)
1 cup water
2 tsp jasmine tea (I used Adagio Jasmine Chun Hao)
25ml olive oil
25g caster sugar
1 clove of garlic, crushed
Pinch of black pepper
1 tsp cornflour mixed with a tbsp water
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 pieces of pork loin or pork chops
How to Make Jasmine Tea Marinated Pork
1. Make a cup of tea with the tea and the water. Leave it to cool with the tea still in the water.
2. Strain the tea leaves out and put 100ml of the tea in a saucepan with the sugar. Boil it until the sugar dissolves.
3. Add the garlic and black pepper and lower the heat to a simmer. Simmer for just a couple of minutes then add the cornflour slowly, a little at a time and stir it to thicken.
4. When it thickens take it off the heat and stir in the olive oil. Let it cool a little then add the balsamic vinegar. Taste it and add a little more if you want a stronger vinegar taste.
5. Leave the marinade in the fridge overnight if you have time although you can use it straightaway.
6. The next morning I put the pork into the sauce to marinate.
7. When you are ready to cook the pork, take it out of the marinade and cook under the grill for about 5 minutes on each side, depending on the thickness of the pork.
8. Put the rest of the marinade in a small sauce pan and heat it up thoroughly. Serve the marinade as a sauce with the pork.
Disclosure: I was sent a free sample of Adagio Jasmine Chun Hao tea.