Jasmine Tea Marinated Pork

Jasmine Tea Marinated Pork Loin

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.

As this is my first attempt at cooking with tea I am linking it to Our Growing Edge, run by Bunny Eats Design and hosted this month by Garden Eats.

Disclosure: I was sent a free sample of Adagio Jasmine Chun Hao tea.

 

Indonesian Pork Tenderloin

Indonesian pork (1024x696)

With this recipe for Indonesian pork tenderloin I’m going back to some of my favourite flavours.  I’ll admit that I don’t know much about Indonesian food but I love peanut sauces. I love marinades.  And of course I love chillies, ginger, coriander and garlic.  Although I’m doing a lot more baking at the moment, it’s recipes like this that I really love to cook and love to eat.   After mixing up the marinade I could have happily stood there eating it, before I’d even put the pork in.   Luckily I knew I’d get to eat it again as a sauce.

I wanted this to be a light meal as I’ve started to think about (dream) of wearing my pre-pregnancy clothes again.  With that in mind I served the pork alongside a simple salad with a zingy lime and ginger dressing.  I guarantee that there is nothing more certain than this salad to make you feel healthy.   Of course, if you’re not dreaming of pulling on your skinny jeans again, you could always serve a little rice with it too.  Or some bread.

The recipe is adapted from Karmelowy.pl

Ingredients – serves 3-4

1 pork tenderloin

5 dried apricots, minced with a knife

2 cloves of garlic, crushed

1/2 tsp ground coriander

30ml soy sauce

100ml orange juice

2 tbsp rice wine vinegar

2 tbsp peanut butter

Juice of 1 lime

1\2 tsp crushed chilli flakes

1/2 tsp ground black pepper

2 tbsp coriander leaf, chopped

How to Make Indonesian Pork Tenderloin

1. Combine all the ingredients in a bowl.  Whisk with a fork until everything is well combined.   Put in a plastic food bag or in a bowl with the pork to marinate.

2. Leave to marinate for at least 30 minutes, preferably overnight.  I left mine for 5 hours.

3. Heat a little oil in an ovenproof pan.  Take the pork out of the marinade and seal it on all sides in the pan and then put it in the oven at 200C for about 15-20 minutes until the pork is cooked through.  Take it out of the oven and leave to rest for 10 minutes before slicing.

4. Pour the marinade from the bag into a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Reduce a little so you have a thick sauce for the pork.

Salad Ingredients

3 carrots, grated

3 spring onions, sliced

10cm piece cucumber, thinly sliced

2 tomatoes, sliced

Handful mange touts

Handful fresh coriander leaf, chopped

2cm piece of root ginger, grated

Juice of 1 lime

1 chilli pepper, finely sliced

Handful of dry roasted peanuts (optional)

How to Make the Salad

1. Toss all the ingredients together.  Scatter a few peanuts on top.

Slow Cooked Pork in Tonkatsu Sauce (Japanese Barbecue Sauce)

pulled pork tonkatsu on pancake (500x342)

I may have mentioned this before, so I’m sorry that I’m saying it again, but pork can be a very very boring meat. Of course, if you like eating the crackling from a joint of roast pork, then I can see that that makes it more interesting, but not being a fan of crackling myself, I’ve never really enjoyed eating pork as a roast dinner.   However, slow cooked with herbs, spices and various condiments, pork suddenly becomes a much more interesting dinner prospect.   My favourite way to eat it is slowcooked in homemade barbecue sauce.   The sauce has to be homemade as I find bought barbecue sauces far too sweet and in fact for years I thought I didn’t like barbecue sauce because of that.

When Janice at Farmersgirl kitchen announced that the theme for this month’s Slow Cooker Challenge would be barbecue I was actually a little disappointed.  I already have a favourite slow cooker barbecue pork recipe (which I also often make with chicken) and I have already shared it here.   I would just have to experiment with something else.   I don’t know much about Japanese food but I did know that they have a type of barbecue sauce.   I read quite a few recipes and got ideas from here and there when coming up with the recipe.   I know that the pomegranate molasses is probably not found in many Japanese tonkatsu sauces, but it does add a sweet-sourness that goes well in this particular sauce.

In Japan, tonkatsu sauce would normally be served as a side dish for dipping breaded pork into rather than for cooking a whole joint of pork like this so this whole meal is definitely not a traditional Japanese dish.   I actually made this around pancake day and so served the pork wrapped in pancakes.   Of course, wrapped in any type of bread would also be lovely or even with rice.  I actually put the leftovers in some quesadillas the next day.

I am also linking to The Spice Trail, which features ginger this month.  It is hosted by Bangers & Mash.

Ingredients – Serves 4-8

4 tbsp ketchup

2 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp rice wine

2 tbsp worcestershire sauce

2 tbsp pomegranite molasses

1 tsp mustard

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 small knob of ginger, finely chopped or grated

1 kg piece of pork

2 tsp cornflour

How to Make Slow Cooked Pork in Tonkatsu Sauce

1. Remove as much of the outside fat as you can from the pork.   There will still be plenty of fat in the pork and it will stay very moist as it cooks.

2. Mix together all the other ingredients.   Taste the sauce and adjust any of the ingredients to your taste.

3. Pour the sauce over the pork and put it in the fridge to marinate for a couple of hours or even overnight.

4. Pour a little water over the pork so that it is almost submerged and then cook on low for 8-9 hours.

5. Take the pork out of the slow cooker.   Put the pan on the hob and simmer the sauce to reduce.  To thicken the sauce after it has reduced, add a couple of teaspoons of cornflour dissolved in cold water and stir.  While the sauce is reducing, shred the  pork using 2 forks.   Pour the warm sauce over the pork to serve.

pulled pork in rolled pancake (500x292)

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Pork Meatballs and Pasta

When I’m feeling a little tired and don’t want to spend too long over dinner, there is nothing easier than having a huge dish of hot pasta with a bit of cheese grated on the top.   Usually I just make a simple tomato, pepper and chilli pasta, but I made this the day after my stuffing experiment and so wanted to use up the mince I had left over from that.  It turned out to be a very tasty as well as more meaty variation.

Of course making the meatballs does require just a little more work than chopping up a few peppers, but as I knew I wasn’t going to want to spend a long time in the kitchen, I made the meatballs earlier in the day and then kept them in the fridge until it was time to cook.

As usual, it’s not the best picture, but it was very tasty.   I am sharing these with Comfort Bites for the Comfort Food November Challenge, which is pasta.  I am also linking to Bangers & Mash for The Spice Trail which this month is for recipes using dried, powdered or fresh chillies.

pork meatball pasta (500x291)

Ingredients – serves 2

150g pasta

200g pork mince

1 slice white bread

1/2 egg

1/2 small onion, finely diced

1/2 tsp dried thyme

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp dried parsley

Salt

Black pepper

400g tin chopped tomatoes

1 Green pepper, sliced

1/2 tsp dried basil

1 chilli pepper, finely sliced

Parmesan cheese

How to Make Pork Meatballs and Pasta

1. Put the bread in a food processor to make into breadcrumbs and then put the mince, breadcrumbs, egg,  onion, herbs, a little salt and pepper into a bowl and mix with your hands.   Form into meatballs.

2. Put a little oil in a large frying pan and fry the meatballs.   Turn them over after about 2 minutes.   Cook for another couple of minutes and then add the pepper and chilli pepper. Begin cooking the pasta.

3. After a couple more minutes add the tinned tomatoes and herbs.   Bring to the boil then lower the heat and leave to simmer for about 10 minutes.   Add a splash of water if it seems too dry.

4. Drain the pasta and mix into the pan with the meatballs so all the pasta is coated by the sauce. Serve topped with a little grated cheese.

comfort food bites

 

 

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Pork, Sage and Onion Stuffing

It may be a little early to start thinking about Christmas lunch for some people, but not for me.    This year will be the first year that I will be the one actually cooking the dinner and the first year that I will have spent Christmas in my own home with guests visiting, rather than being the guest at someone else’s home.  Of course I’ve been getting excited about the new recipes I want to try for weeks but it’s only in the last couple of weeks that I’ve got over my morning sickness (well most of the time) and I’ve started doing a lot of cooking again.   Generally I don’t like to practise recipes in advance.   Once I’ve made something I feel I’ve done it and I want to try something different, or at least make a few tweaks and variations to what I’ve already made.  

However, as  I haven’t ever done any Christmas cooking before, I think this year might be the time that I make an exception to that.   I don’t want to be too busy over Christmas and I want to be sure that our guests are going to enjoy what I make for them.   As I had never made stuffing before, I decided that a Sunday lunch with roast chicken would be the perfect opportunity to test out my stuffing making, which was basically  taken from a Delia Smith recipe.   After all, I reasoned that Delia would know how to make a good stuffing and if I didn’t like it, I could always change it for next time.   Luckily, I won’t have to change it.   I loved the stuffing and this is definitely the recipe I’ll be using on Christmas day, but with at least double the quantities!

sage onion stuffing balls 1 (500x338)

Ingredients – Makes 8 balls of stuffing

250g minced pork

1/2 small onion, finely diced

1 slice white bread

1/2 egg, beaten

1 tsp dried sage

Salt

Black pepper

How to Make Sage and Onion Stuffing

1. Put the bread in a food processor to make breadcrumbs.

2. Mix all the ingredients together with your hands and form into balls. Put in the fridge to rest for half an hour or until the next day.

3. If you’re cooking a roast, put the stuffing  balls in the roasting tin about half an hour before the end of the cooking time.   Turn over after 15 minutes.

4. If the stuffing needs longer than the roast, return the  stuffing to the oven after you’ve put the meat onto a different plate to rest.

Slow Cooked Asian Pork with Noodles

I love to get my slow cooker out and make really easy meals in it, and with the weather now turning colder I know I’m going to be using it a lot over the next few months.   This month for Secret Recipe Club I was assigned Danielle’s blog, Mostly Food and Crafts.  Because of the weather, I searched out all the slow cooker recipes straightaway and because we love Asian food, this recipe for slow cooker Asian pork really caught my eye.   Not only was it perfect for the time of year, it was also easy to make and looked delicious.

I made a smaller quantity of the recipe and also used a little less soy sauce and sugar than in the original recipe.   If I was making it again I would cut down the soy sauce even more as it was quite salty but still really tasty.  I was also lazy and didn’t chop up the dry roasted peanuts either.

slowcooker asian pork (500x416)

Ingredients – serves 2

400g pork leg or shoulder, diced

30ml soy sauce

1 tbsp brown sugar

1 tbsp vinegar (I used white wine vinegar but use rice wine if possible)

1 tsp toasted sesame oil

1 knob of fresh ginger, finely diced or grated

1/2 tsp crushed chilli pepper flakes

Noodles

1 red or green pepper, sliced into strips

Handful of sugar snap peas

Handful of dry roasted peanuts

How to Make Slow Cooker Asian Pork with Noodles

1. In a bowl mix together the soy sauce, brown sugar, vinegar, oil, ginger and chilli pepper flakes.

2. Put the pork in the bottom of the slow cooker and pour the sauce over the top.  Stir so the pork is coated in the sauce.  Add a little water (I needed about 50ml) so the pork is almost covered.  Cook on a low heat for at least 7 hours.

3. Before serving, remove the pork from the slow cooker and heat the liquid gently.   Add a little water and cornflour to thicken.

4. At the same time, cook the noodles according to the instructions on the packet.   About a minute before they are ready, add the strips of pepper and sugar snap peas.

5. Return the pork to the pan with the liquid and also add the drained noodles and vegetables.  Stir so the noodles are thoroughly coated in the sauce.

6. Serve the peanuts scattered on top of the dish.

To see what other Secret Recipe Club Participants have made, click on the link below.

Slow Cooked Pork Chops in Barbecue Sauce

This was such a delicious meal.   I would have said a few years ago that I didn’t really like barbecue sauce.   I didn’t really see what the fuss was about.   However, since I started making my own sauce, that opinion completely changed.   Of course, you can just make the sauce and not cook the meat in the sauce, but I love to cook pork ribs or chops in the slow cooker together with the sauce so that they absorb all the delicious flavours.  I love how the pork tastes afterwards and the way it just falls apart on the fork.

This recipe makes plenty of sauce so if you are just serving 2 people then you will have some sauce left over, which will keep in the fridge for a few days.   If you are serving up to 4 people, then as long as you have room for more chops in the slow cooker, then you won’t need to make more sauce.

The great thing about this dish is that it is so quick to mix together the ingredients for the barbecue sauce.  You can easily prepare it in the morning, put it in the slow cooker and then come home to a delicious meal in the evening.   I served it with salad and bread, but it would be lovely with chunky chips or potato wedges.

pork chop and barbecue sauce(500x301)

Ingredients – Serves 2 with some sauce left over

40ml balsamic vinegar

20ml Worcester Sauce

150ml tomato ketchup

1 tsp fennel seeds

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1/2 small red chilli pepper

1/2 small green chilli pepper

1 tbsp soft brown sugar

1 onion, chopped

2 pork chops (add more for more people)

How to Make Slow-cooked Pork Chops in Barbecue Sauce

1. Use a measuring jug to mix the sauce ingredients so you can easily see how much you are adding.   Add all the liquids first and then the fennel seeds, garlic, chillies and sugar.

2. Pour a little sauce into the bottom of the slow cooker.  Sit the pork chops on the sauce.   Sprinkle the chopped onion over the top and then top with the rest of the barbecue sauce. Add a little water so that the pork is almost covered, but make sure it doesn’t wash the sauce off the chops.

3. Cook slowly for 7-9 hours.

4. Take the chops out of the sauce and put the sauce over a high heat to reduce and thicken.  It should take a maximum of about 10 minutes.

5. Serve the sauce over the pork chops.

I am linking this to Friday Food Frenzy.

Pinchos Morunos – Spanish Pork Skewers

I do like Spanish food and Spain is definitely one of my favourite countries to visit.    In fact, I used to go there every year as a child and so it is the country I have visited the most often.   I’ve always liked the food but didn’t like tapas as a child as I wanted to choose my favourite dish and eat all of it.  Nowadays, I love sharing tapas meals as it’s a chance to try lots of different dishes as well as to eat my favourite – Spanish croquettes.  I love the creaminess on the inside and the crunchiness of the outside.  When I last went to Spain, in November, I ate croquettes about 5 times in just one week.  There were some disappointments though, such as the ones which were frozen in the middle, I sent them back and they were still frozen the second time they came out.  They also forgot one of our dishes, which we decided was probably just as well.    I was also incredibly disappointed once to go to a tapas restaurant in Edinburgh, order croquettes and be given potato ones.  Of course, I like potato ones as well, but they are not Spanish.  So, if I like croquettes so much, why is this post supposedly about pinchos morunos?   Well, I wanted to make a dish for Vanilla Clouds and Lemon Drops’ Sweet Heat Challenge, this month hosted by Janice at Farmersgirl Kitchen.  I needed to make a spicy dish, and as lovely as croquettes are, they are not spicy.  I could have made spicy ones – cheese and jalapeno croquettes would surely be delicious, but the truth is, I just didn’t think of that until it was too late.

So, I decided to make pinchos morunos.   Little skewers of marinated meat are a very popular tapas dish and this is one of the most well-known.  I know, you’ve looked at the picture and are thinking – those are not little skewers of meat! That is not a tapa.  Admittedly, that’s a fair point.  I just happened to make mine a little bit bigger.   Well, I didn’t have any small skewers, and I didn’t want to make lots of small dishes just for two people.  But, I could have so easily made the exact same recipe, plus a few more tapas dishes, served the pork on small skewers and it would have been a great tapas meal.   Instead, I made Spanish rice as a side dish and served the pork on a bed of spinach.  The recipe served two of us, plus enough for leftovers for my lunch the next day.

Ingredients

400g pork tenderloin, diced

1tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tsp cumin

1/2 tsp chilli powder

1 tsp dried oregano

1 tsp dried parsley

1 pinch of saffron

1 clove of garlic, crushed

2 tbsp lemon juice

4 tbsp olive oil

How to make Pinchos Morunos

1. In a bowl, mix together all the ingredients except the pork.   Taste and adjust anything if necessary.

2. Add the pork and stir well so the marinate coats all the pieces of meat.   Put in the fridge for at least 4 hours.

3. Before cooking, thread the meat onto skewers and cook on a griddle pan, grill, or put in the oven.

4. Serve as a main meal or as part of a selection of tapas.

 

Shredded Pork Quesadillas

This is my second month taking part in the Secret Recipe Club.   I enjoyed it so much last month I definitely want to keep taking part, even though things are quite hectic at the moment and I’m not managing to blog as much as I’d like and am also way behind on reading other people’s blogs.   Anyway, this month I was paired with Melissa from Melissa’s Cuisine.   She has some great recipes and I couldn’t decide at first whether to try one of her steak or chicken marinades or to go with this.   In the end, as pulled pork is something I’ve been meaning to make for a long time, I decided that this should be the month to try it. Melissa used pork ribs, which I love, but I decided to get a small shoulder of pork and cook it in the slow cooker and then shred it.   This meant I had lots of pork leftover for more meals.   Always a good thing.    The barbecue sauce was really easy to make and the quesadillas were then really simple to put together.  The only thing I would change would be to make the barbecue sauce slightly less sweet, but this might just be a personal thing as I don’t normally like to mix sweet and savoury together.   Although I didn’t use the exact same proportions as Melissa, she did warn that it makes quite a sweet sauce and so next time I would use even less sugar – maybe just a teaspoon.   Apart from that, this was definitely a success and something that I will make again.   For the Melissa’s original recipe have a look here.

I am also linking this to Family Fresh Cooking.

Ingredients – serves 2

2 flour tortillas

Approx 300g shredded pork

Approx 80g grated cheese

Barbecue Sauce Ingredients

1 tbsp brown sugar

100ml ketchup
2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 clove crushed garlic
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 red chilli, finely diced
How to make Shredded Pork Quesadillas and Barbecue Sauce
1. I put some pork shoulder in the slow cooker in the morning and in the evening it was ready.   I removed all the fat and used two forks to shred it.   You could also roast it in the oven if you prefer.
2. To make the barbecue sauce, add all the sauce ingredients to a small saucepan.   Bring to the boil and let simmer for about 15 minutes.   Mix the pork into the sauce and heat through.
3. Put a tortilla in the bottom of a frying pan.    Cover with the shredded pork then the cheese.  Put another tortilla on top.   Leave to cook over a low heat for about 5 minutes.
4. Turn the tortilla.    Slide it onto a plate.   Put another plate on top.    Flip it over quickly then slide it back into the pan.   Cook for another 5 minutes.
To see what other Secret Recipe Club members have made, click on the link below:

365 Challenge: Curried Pork

When I first looked at this recipe I have to admit that I was sceptical.  I like to make curries by adding different spices and experimenting to get different flavours.   If a recipe just says curry powder, I imagine that it’s going to be a bit boring.   Nevertheless, I’d chosen to make this as part of the 365 Challenge so there was no getting out of it.   I knew I had to make it.    Another problem was that my lovely husband does not like dried fruit, is not keen on nuts and loves really hot and spicy curries.   I knew this dish would not suit him and so I decided to adapt it to serve just one – myself, while I also made a one person sized serving of pork vindaloo for him.   At least we would both eat the same rice!

So how was it?   I love it when I am wrong about my expectations about a dish.   I loved this so much that I made a very similar version the next day to use up some of the cream.   If my husband liked dried fruit, it would become a regular dish.   Oh well, all that cream.   Maybe it’s just as well he wouldn’t like it.

This dish is part of the 365 Challenge which is run by Murdoch Books.  The team are cooking their way through each dish in Stephane Reynaud’s 365 Good Reasons to Sit Down to Eat.  This dish has been adapted from his recipe for curried pork tenderloin.

Ingredients – serves 1

1 pork chop

1 small onion, sliced

1 carrot, cut into thin slices

10g sultanas

2 dried apricots

1 dried prune

10g flaked almonds

10g pistachio nuts

1 tsp hot curry powder

100ml stock

20ml double cream

oil

How to Make Curried Pork

1. Heat a little oil in a saucepan and add the onion.  Fry until softened.

2. Add the carrot, dried fruit, nuts and curry powder.   Stir then add the stock.

3. Bring to the boil then simmer for about 10 minutes.    Add the cream and heat through.

4. Heat some more oil in a frying pan.   Season the pork chop and cook for about 4 minutes on each side, more or less depending on the thickness.

5. Serve the pork with rice and top with the curry sauce.