The forward planning required for this roast pork recipe is oh so worth it! And the shopping and preparation that has to be done way ahead of the serving and eating makes for a very relaxing Sunday. This is the ultimate ‘set and forget’ dinner, and perfect for Aga cooking.
This is a great starting point if you are new to the joys of Aga cooking, and can easily be cooked on Gas ½ or 120*.
For perfect roast pork, you will need: A rolled shoulder of pork 2-3 apples, sliced – no need to peel or core 2 large onions sliced thinly several sprigs of thyme
Olive oil Sea Salt A glass or three of apple juice or cider plain flour
Put the apples, herbs and onions into the bottom of a roasting pan – use the small AGA roasting dish if the pork isn’t too big. Dry the pork with some kitchen towel score the skin well using a very sharp knife (or ask your butcher to do this for you!) Put the pork on top of the apples, onions and herbs, the pour a generous amount of oil onto the skin and rub in well. The sprinkle generously with the salt and rub that in as well. Pour a glass of apple juice or cider around the base of the meat. Blast at the top of the top oven of the AGA for 45 minutes to an hour. This will depend on the heat of your oven so keep an eye on it. Once the crackling is done to your liking move the tin to the bottom oven of the AGA and leave for at least 5 hours.
The roast pork will be falling apart by now so you don’t need to rest it for longer than it takes to make a quick gravy. For the gravy take a large jug and sieve and put the contents of the pan into the sieve. You then want to push as much of the caramelised onion and apple through the sieve as possible. Pop in a couple of ice cubes, leave for few minutes then remove the ice and skim the fat off using a metal spoon. Put the roasting pan on a high heat and add one tablespoon of the fat and a tablespoon of flour. Stir and cook for about a minute. Then take a wineglass full of cider or apple juice and pour it into the roux, stirring as you go.
Gradually add the juices in the jug, again stirring all the time. I then add boiling water (or water from steaming some cabbage) until I have a good, silky consistency. Cook this over a medium heat for a few minutes.
Slice the pork and serve with the gravy. This really is perfect roast pork, and delicious when served with mashed potato mixed with cooked, mashed apple, some savoy cabbage. If you have time and inclination you can braise some new season carrots and leeks in chicken stock and cider… a perfect accompaniment but a bit of a faff!