Category Archives: pork

Lighter French Cassoulet

Cassoulet, the name of the earthenware dish in which it is served, is an aromatic, hearty bean and meat stew with some aromatic herbs and spices, the flavor is subtle and delicate, and really comforting.
The key to a perfect cassoulet is the slow cooking process that tenderizes the meat and the beans and infuses the stew with its rich flavor. Your house will be filled with an incredible aroma that will get anyones stomach rumbling as soon as they walk thru the door.
There are many varieties of Cassoulet depending on your meat choices. My personal preference is smoked sausage, bacon, pork and chicken. You could go for Duck confit, but I find it too heavy so I have opted for the chicken instead.

Serves 4

INGREDIENTS:

• 2 fresh small ham hocks
• 5 oz. diced smoked Bacon
• Salt and freshly ground pepper
• 1 pounds dried cannellini beans, soaked overnight
• 2 small carrots, thinly sliced
• 1 medium onions, diced
• 1 celery stalk, sliced
• 2 Bay leaves
• 2 cloves of garlic, peeled and chopped
• 1 head of garlic, unpeeled, plus 2 small garlic cloves, peeled
• 1 glass of dry white wine
• 1 can chopped tomatoes
• 1/4 tsp. All spice
• 1 quart / 1 liter, chicken broth
• 4 parsley sprigs, 2 thyme sprigs and 2 bay leaf
• 4 chicken legs
• 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
• 4 pork sausages, your favourite kind
• 1 smoked kielbasa or other smoked sausage, or 2 small ones

METHOD:

• In a bowl, cover the beans with 3 inches of water and soak overnight.
• Add the bacon and ham hocks to a very large frying pan or pot and brown them all over.
• Remove and set aside.
• Add the carrots, onions and celery and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onions are golden, about 7 minutes. Add the chopped garlic and bay leaves.
• Add the all spice.
• Add the glass of wine.
• Add the head of garlic and the tomatoes and cook, stirring for 1 minute. Add the broth and the herbs and bring to a boil.
• Add the beans to the pan and simmer until the beans are just tender, about 2 hours.
• Pick out the ham hocks. Cut the meats into bite-size pieces; discard the bones, skin and gristle. Pick out the head of garlic and reserve.
• Put the meat back in with the beans.
• Transfer the beans and liquid to a casserole dish
• Preheat the oven to 180 ° C / 350° F
• Heat the vegetable oil in a medium skillet.
• Season the chicken legs with salt and pepper.
• Add the sausages and chicken legs to the skillet and cook over moderately high heat until browned all over.
• Nestle the sausages, the chicken and the kielbasa into the cassoulet.
• Put the garlic bulb in the middle.
• Bake the cassoulet for 1 hour longer, until it is richly browned on the surface. Transfer to a rack and let rest for at least 20 minutes before serving.
• Serve with plenty of crusty french bread.

Enjoy!

Quick and Easy Pulled Pork Sandwiches

This is a super easy, no fail slow cooker recipe, put together in an instant.

Pulled Pork is one of my favourites to make and eat, since it’s packed with flavour and made with minimal effort. The Pork comes out very tender and juicy and stuffed into a sandwich,  it’s scrumptious .

Once you’ve placed the ingredients in your slow cooker, you can pretty much forget about it until you’re ready to eat.

This is also great for crowds and parties since you can leave the finished pulled Pork in the slow cooker on the “keep warm” setting for at least an other two hours.

Alternatively, you can freeze half and eat the the remainder some other day. It will keep in the freezer for about two months.

⏰ Prep time : 15 minutes
🍴 Cooking time : 4 hours.
🍝 Serves : 6 – 8

INGREDIENTS:

1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 tablespoons chili powder
3 tbsp smoked paprika
2 to 3 sprigs thyme, leaves only
2 cloves garlic, peeled and grated
2 teaspoons salt
1 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
1/2 tsp cayenne
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
3 tbsp olive oil
3 1/2 – 4 lbs. boneless pork shoulder, trimmed of excess fat
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1/4 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3/4 cup barbecue sauce

INSTRUCTIONS:

• In small bowl, mix brown sugar, chili powder, paprika, thyme, garlic, salt, cayenne, ground pepper and olive oil to form a paste.
Rub mixture all over pork.
• Marinate for a few hours if you have the time, it will taste great either way.
• Place in slow cooker.
• Pour broth and 1/4 cup of the vinegar over pork. Cover and cook on High heat setting 3 hours.
• Add a little water if the sauce evaporates to quickly.
• Add the Bbq sauce and cook for about an other hour until completely tender. Check by pulling away some meat with a fork.
• Remove pork to cutting board, and shred using 2 forks. Return to slow cooker and cook on low heat setting for about 20 minutes or until warmed.
• To serve, split buns open, and scoop out s big ladle of pulled pork with sauce onto the bun, top with pickles and/or coleslaw and cover with top halves of buns, eat immediately.
• Have plenty of napkins ready!

Enjoy!
Myra XO

mexican hamburger

Mexican Corn Jalapeño Burger

mexican hamburger

Say Hola to the new Mexican Corn Jalapeño Burger. Yes, we are very excited about our Mexican Corn Jalapeño Hamburguesa. Wowsa…..
I basically put all my favourite ingredients in one place. Organic good quality meat, a 50/50 mixture of pork and beef. Taco seasoning and ground tortilla chips instead of breadcrumbs, and then topped with the best corn salad of your life! It’s made in minutes and can be eaten anytime.
I could easily have a bowl of this corn salad for dinner on it’s own it’s that good (and a little addictive if you ask me). It also adds an amazing crunch.
Off course there’s Avocado and Bacon involved, and cheese obvi. Melted cheese…
So lite up your barbacoa and grill some Mexican Corn Jalapeño hamburguesas.


Prep Time :10 mins
Cook Time :10 mins
Total Time :20 mins


Servings: 4

Ingredients;

• 1 lb / 500 gr ground beef/pork mixture
• 2 tsp. taco seasoning
• A dash of liquid smoke if you have it (optional)
• 1 egg yolk
• 1 cup natural tortilla chips, ground fine
• 1 clove of garlic, grated
• 1 or 2 slices jalapeno from a jar, chopped (these babies are hot!)
Corn Salad:
• 2 ears of corn or one can, drained
• 2 tbsp chopped coriander
• 4 tbsp mayonnaise
• 2 tbsp sour cream
• Salt and pepper
• 3 green onions finely sliced
• Squeeze of lime (just a little)
For the Burger:
• 2 Avocados, sliced
• 4 lettuce leafs
• Sliced tomatoes
• 8 slices grilled bacon
• Salsa for the buns
• 4 buns
• 8 slices sharp cheddar cheese

mexican hamburger

Instructions;

1. If you are grilling outside, place the corn in the husks on the grill, close the cover and grill for 15 to 20 minutes, turning every 5 minutes, or until kernels are tender when pierced with a paring knife. Otherwise grill on a griddle pan indoors or use a can of corn, drained.
Remove the husks and let cool a little before removing the kernels with a sharp knife by putting the corn in an upright position and sliding your knife down the sides.
Place kernels in a bowl and add the remaining ingredients for the corn salad. Mix and set aside.
For the burgers, place the meat in a bowl and add the ground tortilla chips, seasonings and egg yolk. Mix with your hands and form 4 patties.
Grill on medium high heat for about 4 to 5 minutes on each side until cooked through (you are using pork which cannot be consumed rare). Place two slices of cheese on each burger after the first flip.
Split the hamburger buns in half and toast lightly.
Spread salsa on both sides of the bun, place lettuce leaf on top, tomato slices, avocado, the burger, bacon slices and top with as much corn salad as you can. Place the top of the bun on top and insert skewer to hold it together.
You’re going to love this Burger, I promise but….Warning! Do not serve on a first date ’cause in can get a little messy.

Enjoy!
Myra XO

chinese-dumplings

Chinese Dumplings

chinese-dumplings

Hello friends,

Let me tell you about these amazing dumplings. I just love these so much, I don’t think I can ever live without them again. I don’t want to and I don’t plan to. And by that, I mean having a portion or two in the freezer ready to steam at a moments notice.

I do have to confess, that I am not the greatest dumpling shaper, but as longs as the little package is closed, who cares. The flavor of the filling is the best ever. You can use this dumpling recipe to make wonton soup, pot stickers, or even deep fry them and serve them as wontons.

They do take a little time and patience, but it’s worth the effort. Just take your time.

I used to watch my mom make these as a kid, and she would sit at the dining room table with a glass of Sherry, and make it an “afternoon thing”. She would make tons for parties and we loved them big time. It has always been one of my favourite snacks.

Now I have them as dinner because they’re just too good to just eat a few.

This filling is inspired on her recipe but with my own twist.

Make ‘em, Love ‘em and thank me later (;

Chinese dumplings

Juicy and tender dumplings, better than take out. (Can be frozen)

Ingredients Chinese Dumplings:

  • 200 gr. / ½ lb. finely chopped raw shrimp
  • 300 gr. / ½ lb. ground pork
  • 1 cup shredded white cabbage
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 2 tsp.  freshly grated ginger
  • 1 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp. oyster sauce
  • 1 tsp. sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. sambal oelek
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 40 won ton wrappers (store bought) cut into 4 or home made,
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil, or more, as needed

Instructions:

  1. In a large bowl, combine shrimp, pork, cabbage, garlic, green onions, ginger, soy sauce, oyster sauce, sesame oil, sambal oelek, and egg. Season with pepper.
  2. To assemble the dumplings, place wrappers on a work surface. Spoon 1 tablespoon of the pork mixture into the center of each wrapper. Place the dumpling in your hand and using your finger, rub the edges of the wrappers with water. Fold the dough over the filling to create a half-moon shape, pinching the edges to seal.
  3. Heat vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Working in batches, add dumplings in a single layer and cook until bottoms begin to brown, about 30 seconds. Add 1/2 cup water, cover and cook/steam for about 4 minutes; uncover and cook until the liquid has evaporated completely and the bottoms are crisp and golden brown, about 2 more minutes. Repeat with remaining dumplings, adding more vegetable oil as needed.
  4. Serve immediately with dipping sauce.

Ingredients Dipping sauce:

  • 2 tbsp. soy sauce
  • 4 tbsp. sweet chili sauce
  • 2 tbsp. water
  • Add some sliced chili Mix together

Mix together in a small bowl.

Ingredients Wonton wrappers:

  • 4oo gr. plain flour
  • 2 medium eggs
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • About 200 ml. / a little less than 1 cup water
  • Corn starch

Instructions;

Mix the ingredients in a bowl until it comes together. Don’t add all the water at once but see how it goes. Add a little flour if it’s too wet or a little water if  it’s too dry.

Knead for about 10 minutes.

Form a ball and leave, covered with plastic, to rest for about 20 minutes.

Roll out the dough onto a floured surface. Shape into a square and cut into smaller squares.

Roll into small balls.

Again roll out each ball into a disk, using enough corn starch so they don’t stick.

Enjoy!

Myra XO

Five Spice Slow roasted Pork Belly

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I Couldn’t wait to share this with you. A great change from all things turkey.
I think Asian is pretty much the opposite of turkey and I really needed that. I love the holidays and everything about them, but it’s time for something completely different.
This five spice slow roasted pork belly is going to drive you mad with delight once you’ve tasted it.
Tender as can be with and a super crispy skin, aka crackling!
And best of all, this piece cost me around € 6, 50 is weighs around 1.3 kg. / 2.8 lbs and you could easily serve six people from this piece. Hallelujah to that.
It’s important that you dry the skin very very well, then make cuts in it with a Stanley knife but not all the way thru to the meat, just the fat.
I’ve marinated it overnight in a plastic zip lock bag, skin side facing up so that that part is not in the marinade.
Then the next day, bake in a hot oven for 20 minutes, then on slow for 2 1/2 hours. This may seem like a long time and it is, but you want to render away as much fat as possible.

five-spice-pork-belly9

           

Ingredients;
1 pork belly, without bone  about 1.3 kg / 2.8 lbs.
1″grated fresh ginger, (don’t bother peeling it first)
1 garlic clove, peeled and grated
1 tsp. Chinese Five Spice
1 tbsp. Pure Sesame Oil
2 tbsp. Hoisin Sauce
1 tbsp. Honey
1 1/2 tbsp. Soy Sauce or tamari  (gluten free)
1 tbsp. Conimex Ketjap Manis

five-spice-pork-belly2

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five-spice-pork-belly7

Method;

Mix the marinade in a bowl.

Place the pork in a zip lock bag, skin side down , pour and rub all the marinade over the meat, close the bag and carefully turn the skin side up.
Place the bag on a plate and leave to marinade for at least 8 hours or preferably overnight.

The next day,  Pre heat the oven to 220°C / 430°F

Remove the pork from the fridge an hour before cooking.

Remove the meat from marinade and discard the bag and juices.
Dry thoroughly with kitchen paper.

Take a sharp Stanley knife and make cuts all over the skin side of the belly diagonally, a third of an inch apart if you can.  All the way thru the fat but not yet touching the meat. This is important!

Rub with some salt and place in a roasting tin that has been lined with a double layer of foil.
Place in the hot oven and cook for about 20 minutes.
Lower the heat to 160°C / 320°F and cook for an other 2 1/2 hours. Cover loosely with some foil if the skin gets to dark, the foil does have to be tented to keep the crispyness.

Remove from oven. Let rest for 10 minutes. Slice and serve with rice noodles, Bok Choy and some hoisin sauce. Or any other vegetable of choice. Leftovers are heavenly and it also freezes well, but you do have to remove the skin because this can get a little chewy after freezing.

If you try this recipe let me know! Leave a comment below and don’t forget to snap a pic and tag it #thecookingspoonblog  on instagram! You’ll make my day.

Not quite what you’re looking for? How about Sticky Shrimp & Pineapple with Jasmin Rice.