So as the weather gets colder and colder, and the days are still so bloody short (when will it stop being dark by 4pm….when?!), there is nothing better than making a stew. Aaah, and not just any stew – oh no, a slight Mexican/Spanish inspired Pulled Pork and Chorizo Stew. Now it’s not really a proper stew, in that you’re not meant to have it in a bowl with a massive piece of buttered warm bread (of course, if you want to do this…that is totally fine). Instead I served this dish in a burrito – accompanied by all those important trimmings: chargrilled red peppers, guacamole, sour cream, spicy rice, coriander….the works!
I have also given a recipe below for any leftovers…if there are any, that is! The pulled pork is a great addition to any salad, and makes any salad a little less girly and more ‘manly’ if you will. And by that I mean, you definitely don’t feel like you are having a giant bowl of rabbit food, and are hungry within the next hour (well, I am feeling a bit peckish at the moment, hence my latte in one hand and digestive biscuit in the other. But that is beside the point!)
So on with the recipes!
For the Rub:
1 ½ tablespoons fennel seeds
1 ½ tablespoons coriander seeds
2 tsps ground cumin
1 tsp hot chili powder
3 whole cloves
Good pinch of Sea Salt
1.5 kilo, Pork Shoulder, skin and bone removed
3 medium carrots, halved
3 celery stalks, halved
2 white onions, skin removed and quartered
4 garlic cloves, peeled and rough diced
1 bottle (568ml) cider
140 grams chorizo, skin removed and chopped into ½ inch slices
Salt and Pepper, to season
Preheat the oven to 140C.
Put all the ingredients for the rub in a pestle and mortar, and grind this down into a fine powder (or as fine as possible). Pour this all over the pork, and rub it in well with your hands – making sure the pork is well seasoned. If you have the time, you can put the pork in a tray, cover with foil, and put in the fridge overnight. This helps to infuse the flavours.
Otherwise, add the pork to a cast iron pot (or in other words, dutch oven). Underneath the pork, place the chopped carrots, celery, onions and garlic. This helps ensure the pork doesn’t touch the base of the pot, and potentially catch.
Add the chorizo, the full bottle of cider and season well. Cover the pot with 2 sheets of foil, the lid and place in the oven.
The pork will need about 4 ½ to 5 hours to cook at this low temperature – but it is worth it! While it is cooking, make sure there is always plenty of juice/liquid in the pot and the dish doesn’t dry out.
During the last hour, remove the lid and foil – this will help reduce the juices and concentrate the flavours.
When the dish is done, remove the pork from the pot and set aside. Discard the carrots, celery and onions. Pull the pork apart – this should be so easy to do, and really requires no effort at all – the pork just falls apart. Put the shredded pork back into the cast iron pot, given it a gentle stir, and check if any more seasoning is needed. If not, just bang the entire cast iron pot in the centre of your table and let everyone dig in!
A ‘Just As Tasty’ Pulled Pork Salad
So this recipe is meant for any pulled pork leftovers, and is a perfect lunch dish.
100 grams dried couscous
1 ripe avocado, sliced
4 green onions, sliced finely
60 grams feta, crumbled
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
½ lemon, juice only
Small handful flat leaf parsley
120 grams dried couscous
Leftover Pulled Pork & Chorizo Stew (2 cups worth for this recipe, if serving 2 people, & thoroughly reheated)
½ chargrilled red pepper (either from a jar or grilled at home)
Soak the couscous in hot, freshly boiled water, cover and set aside for about 5 minutes until all the water has been absorbed and the couscous is tender and cooked. Toss the couscous with a fork to loosen, season and drizzle over a touch of extra virgin olive oil.
Put the couscous in the centre of a plate, and top with the reheated pulled pork.
Now, top this off with the remainder of the ingredients, making sure to leave the feta cheese for last. Finally finish off with a simple dressing of extra virgin olive oil and freshly squeezed lemon juice. And you’re done!