Monday, 16 April 2012

Pork belly with roasted charlotte potatoes,carrot puree and Charcutière sauce

Inspired by Le Gavroches' wonderful rack of pork dish, this is a great alternative with a cheaper cut, it can either be portioned individually or presented as a sharing plate.

Serves 2

750g Pork belly
12 Charlotte potatoes, peeled
180g Butter
12 Cloves garlic
Couple of thyme sprigs
125ml Dry white wine
1 Tablespoon white wine vinegar
2 Large shallots, chopped finely
275ml Veal stock (if you cannot find veal stock, use half chicken stock,half beef stock producing a light flavoursome stock)
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2 Plum tomatoes, peeled,de-seeded and diced
3 Carrots,peeled and chopped
75ml Milk
4 Tablespoons olive oil
1 Bay leaf

1. Preheat the oven to 190C.

2. Season the belly pork with salt and black pepper and score the skin (you could get your butcher to do this for you) making sure the salt is rubbed in thoroughly to produce crackling. Add the olive oil and 100g of butter to a roasting tray to heat up in the oven while you prepare the potatoes.

3. When heated, place the pork into the roasting tray and roast for 45 minutes, then add the potatoes and garlic cloves still in their skins along with the thyme and bay leaf, season lightly and baste with the butter and oil.

4. After 45 minutes turn down the oven to 150C and roast for a further 15 minutes, basting the potatoes regularly, the potatoes by this point should be nice and golden and the pork crackling should be done, if not then turn the oven up to 200C and leave for 5 minutes or so until the desired finish, keep warm before doing the sauce.

5. For the carrot puree, place the sliced carrots into salted boiling water in a pan and boil for 10-15 minutes, or until the carrots are soft and offer no resistance when pierced with a knife. Drain the carrots and place into a blender with the milk, gradually adding the milk as not to make the puree too loose, blitz to a fine puree, push through a sieve to avoid any lumps and season with salt and pepper, keep warm.

6. To make the Charcutière sauce, take the roasting pan that the pork and potatoes were in and drain the fat from the pan, set over a high heat and add the white wine and vinegar, this will de-glaze the pan, in another pan, sweat the shallots with 50g of butter and add the veal stock and a generous seasoning of pepper and reduce down rapidly by two-thirds.

7. Add in the tomatoes, remaining butter and whisk, add in the Dijon mustard and season, the sauce should have a sharp taste to it.

8. To serve, place three tablespoons of carrot puree equal width apart going across the plate (or slate!) but in opposite directions, place the spoon into the blob and draw the spoon back in the desired direction to create a tear drop shape, place a potato on each puree line and cut the pork into long strips and balance on the potatoes, spoon over the Charcutière sauce and serve with the rest of the potatoes on the side.

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