Last in our series of 3 meals from one cut of meat (1 leg of lamb–> 3 family meals and 1 chicken –>3 family meals)is how to get 3 dishes out of a piece of pork shoulder. Generally I buy a piece of pork shoulder between 1.2-1.6kg in weight, deboned (for some reason my market butcher never has these with the bone in) with a thick layer of fat and skin. This is by far my favourite cut of meat and provides me with the quickest meals I can cook at home. Sometimes I can stretch it to 4-5 meals, generally involving a lot of noodles.
Meal 1: Roast Pork with Crackling
To begin with, cut about a 3rd of your pork shoulder off the rest. Also remove the thick layer of fat and skin from the rest of the pork shoulder. You will use the 1/3 piece and the extra piece of fatty skin for the roast.
While you could do this roast pork Western style, with roast potatoes, pumpkin, greens etc. sometimes I like to mix it up and make my roast pork with an Asian flavour, which goes well with rice, cucumber and little bit of some special ginger dressing which you can also use on the third dish of Noodles with Pork and Veggies.
You will also need:
1 teaspoon fennel seeds
1 small piece of ginger
3 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons white sugar
pinch white pepper
2 large carrots
2 large handfuls sugar snap peas or snow peas
2 cups basmati rice
1 small piece of ginger
6 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons mirin
2 teaspoons sugar
½ a large mild red chilli
- Take your pork and pork fat and dry it all over with paper towelling.
- Score the fat with a criss-cross pattern through the skin and fat but do not cut into the meat.
- Roughly grind the fennel seeds in a spice grinder, in a mortar and pestle or just grind them with the end of a rolling pin in a bowl. Combine fennel with salt, sugar and pepper.
- Grate the ginger and combine with the spice rub mixture.
- Rub the spice rub into the scored skin and all over the meat.
- Cut 2 of the carrots in half lengthways so you have 4 long pieces. Lay these pieces spaced slightly apart at the bottom of the baking dish side by side, parallel. Place the meat on top of these carrots. The carrots act as sort of rack that keeps the pork from touching the bottom but also soak up the pork fat deliciously. You can do the same with potatoes or sweet potatoes.
- Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celcius.
- Roast the pork at 220 for 20-25 minutes until the fat has turned into a crisp crackling. Turn down the oven to 180 degrees and cook for a further 25-30 minutes.
- Allow the meat to rest for 20 minutes before cutting.
- Meanwhile cook the rice as you usually would, whether in a rice cooker, through the absorption method or just boiling it in a pot.
- Blanch the peas in boiling water until they turn bright green, for about 1 minute.
- To prepare the sauce, stir the soy sauce and sugar together until the sugar dissolves. Grate in the ginger and stir to combine.
- Slice the pork in the cracks between the crackling. Serve slices of pork on beds of rice with the peas and the sauce drizzled over. Thinly cut the carrot which cooked under the pork; you’ve never tasted carrots so rich in your life.
Meal 2: Pulled Pork Buns
You may have seen my recipe for pulled pork earlier this year? You can find it here. You’ll use pulled pork in both this dish and the following noodle dish. Use the other 2/3 of the pork shoulder to make the Pulled Pork, just slightly reduce the amount of seasoning.
You will also need one lot of my easy bread recipe, which I use to make the soft buns for this dish.
You will also need to make Informal Coleslaw:
¼ head of red cabbage
3 tablespoons of mayonnaise
juice of ½ a lemon
1. Finely shred the red cabbage and grate the carrots.
2. Combine with the mayonnaise and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper
Meal 3: Noodles with Pork and Veggies
Leftover sauce from meal 1
Half the pulled pork
750g thick udon noodles
3 bunches of bok choy
3 spring onions, finely sliced
2 carrots grated
1 cucumber, cut into thin batons
2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds
- Cook the udon noodles according to the instructions on the pack. You can use thin dried udon, frozen udon (which is the best) or those packs of ‘shelf fresh’ udon.
- While the udon is cooking, finely shred the bok choy and towards the end of the noodles cooking time, add the bok choy into the pot to cook briefly in the hot water. Drain.
- Combine the noodles, pulled pork, leftover sauce, bok choy, cucumber, carrot, spring onion, and toasted sesame seeds. Toss to combine and then serve.