Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Smashed spud salad

Bag of new potatoes
handfull of parsley
handfull of dill
handfull of chives
extra virgin olive oil
white wine vinegar
pinch of caster sugar
lemon juice

Potatoe salad made with mayo and spring onions has its place in the grand scheme of things, just like Brian lenihan has his place in Dail Eireann.... But just because something has its place doesnt mean its any use. This salad is streets ahead of anything your going to bring home in a single serve plastic container form your local supermarket.

Throw the spuds into a pot of salted boiling water and let them Par-boil until there almost cooked through, its the stage I like to call "I'd eat 'em but I wouldnt mash 'em". Strain them into a collender and lob them into a roasting dish, slap on plenty of olive oil and season up and smash them open so they get nice and crispy, into the oven they go to roast for about a half an hour.

When ther nice and golden take them out and put them in a bowl and get them dressed while there hot so they suck it all up.. YYYEEEE BOOY!!!!!!! Get your self a mixing jug and pour in two parts extra virgin olive oil, one part white wine vinegar and lemon juice to taste. Mix it up with whatever you have handy and add a pinch of sugar. Pour over the piping hot spuds and give them a stir, when thats done grab the herbs all at once, roll up and chop like a man gone mad. Stirr your herbs into your potatoe salad and throw it on the tabel.

Not a single serve plastic container in sight.... Bliss

Slow roasted belly pork with sage and apple

belly pork
2 apples of any kind
handfull of sage leaves
1/2 a clove of garlic
pinch of caster sugar

Give me crackling any day..... HOMP!!!!! CRACK!!!! CHEW!!!!!

This is hands down one of the best ways to cook a nice big fatty shhhhhhhhlab of belly pork. Its a bit of a twist on the classic roast pork and apple sauce sunday roast and I usually have it as a side dish funnily enough or with some proper mashed spuds as a type of winter warmer... Irish soul food as it where.

To start off, season you shhhhhhhlab with pleanty of sea salt and black pepper, as even though were going to bang this baby in the oven for ages and slow roast it we want to get some crispness and colour onto the fat before hand. When he's nicley seasoned cut him up into squares, doesnt matter how big or small but I'll usually go for a kind of chubby blokes mouthfull. Does the Job. Stick a pan on and lob in some olive oil and let it get hot for a while, when the heat coming off the pan makes it uncomfortable to hover your hand above it for very long throw in a few of your pork pieces (fat side down) and crispy them up for a few minutes. Dont get ahead of yourself and overload the pan, if you do the pork will stew instead of fry... not what were after. When all of your pork has been bronzed up a treat stick it in a roasting dish of some kind and throw over a pinch of caster sugar. Core your two apples how ever you want to do this and chuck that in with the pork pieces. Roll up your sage leaves into a cigar shape a la Hanibal from the A team and shred before draping over the pork........ Bang it in the oven........ Hour and a half ish...... I love it when a plan comes together.

Serve with creamy mashed spuds and bask in the knowledge that life for the next twenty minutes will be epic.