Monday 3 September 2018

Recipe: Rack of Pork with Spinach and Apricot Stuffing #AD

Disclaimer: This is a sponsored post in collaboration with Bord Bia
As I mentioned when sharing a slow cooked pork ramen dish last week, Bord Bia is currently running a campaign to encourage people to try something different from their usual recipe repertoire with quality assured pork as a central ingredient. As well as being flavoursome and good value, pork meat is very versatile; it would be a pity to just use it for the same recipes, wouldn’t it?
While I regularly cook with pork, I’ve actually never roasted a rack of pork at home so this recipe was just perfect to take on Bord Bia’s #PorkNight challenge. This recipe requires a bit of cooking time and therefore is ideal for a Sunday roast. The sweetness of the dried apricots goes great with the flavour of the pork. Between the juicy meat, the crispy crackling, the rich gravy and the slightly sweet stuffing, this succulent dish was an absolute winner in my house. Hope you’ll give it a go!

You can find this recipe and more pork inspiration recipes on Bord Bia’s website
Always look for the Bord Bia Quality Mark on pork so that you know it has been produced to the highest Bord Bia quality standards and where it comes from.
Recipe: Rack of Pork with Spinach and Apricot Stuffing

Ask your butcher to remove the chine bone to make it easier to carve.
Serves: 6 Time: 2 hours
1 1⁄2kg rack of pork, chined, French trimmed and skin scored

1 onion, roughly chopped

2 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 tablesp. flour
600mls stock or water
For the stuffing:
25g butter

1⁄2 onion, finely chopped

1 garlic clove, peeled and crushed
1teasp. rosemary leaves, chopped
50g dried apricots, finely diced

50g spinach

40g breadcrumbs

Zest of 1⁄2 lemon

Salt and freshly ground black pepper
To serve: Roast potatoes and honey glazed carrots and parsnips Heat oven to Gas Mark 7, 220°C (425°F).
To make the stuffing: Heat the butter in a frying pan over a medium heat. Add the onion and cook over a low heat, stirring, until the onion has softened, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute. Stir through the chopped rosemary leaves, apricots and spinach. Stir to combine. Leave on the heat for another couple of minutes until the spinach wilts. Remove to a mixing bowl. Add the breadcrumbs, lemon zest and salt and black pepper.
While the stuffing is cooling prepare the pork. Place the meat on a chopping board. Run a sharp knife across between the bones and meat to separate them and make a pocket for the stuffing. Don’t cut all the way through, leave the bone and meat connected for about 3cm at the base of the bones.
When the stuffing has cooled, press it into the gap between bones and the meat. Tie up with string all the way along to hold the stuffing in. Use foil to cover any exposed stuffing as it will burn in the hot oven. Place the chopped onion and carrots in a roasting tin and place the joint on top. Season the joint with salt and pepper and cover with tin foil. Place in the preheated oven.
To Cook: Allow to cook for 30 minutes per 1⁄2kg. After the first 45 minutes reduce the heat to Gas Mark 6, 200°C (400°F). To be absolutely accurate use a meat thermometer. For the last half hour remove the tin foil. When the meat is cooked remove from the oven, transfer to a chopping board, cover loosely with tin foil and allow to rest for 20 minutes.
To make the gravy: Stir the flour into the juices in the roasting tin. Place over a medium heat and continue stirring with a wooden spoon. Gradually add in the stock or water and stir until it thickens.
Taste and season. Put through a sieve into a warmed gravy boat. Discard the vegetables that were cooked in the roasting tin.
To serve: Slice the pork and serve with roast potatoes and honey glazed carrots and parsnips.
To cook the carrots and parsnips: Roughly chop some cleaned carrots and parsnips, then toss them in a little olive oil and honey and season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 30-40 minutes until tender.