FROM THE GROUND Every effort should be made to insure that we use freshly grown vegetables.
We are time poor. Already ‘convenience’ and ‘ready-made’ foods are making a mockery of the skill, nature, and beauty of rearing any product – animal or plant based. Since when should rice come ‘in a bag’ or a vegetable come ‘prepared’? Rice should be stored as it comes, dry; it should be washed in the saucepan before cooking. Vegetables should be washed, scrubbed or peeled just prior to consumption; their ‘life-force’ or nutrient capacity starts to diminished as soon as you break the sum into smaller parts.
How long are we from the science fiction scenario I grew up reading about, when all humans would take one pill every mealtime containing all that was required for a successful modern life? What tosh!
Food preparation is work, and it requires trial and effort, so many times learning by one’s mistakes. But learning and working all the time. Therein lies the key.
Red’s Roast Pork with Beans, Sage and Tomato
Here’s one to test you. Simple roast pork coupled with the delicious fresh flavours of sage is a marriage in heaven. This will require some vegetable preparation, including the overnight soaking of dried beans – perish the thought!
What you need
- 1 pork loin on bone, 3-4lb
- 1 glass white wine
- 3 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary leaves
- 2 garlic cloves chopped
- Olive oil
- 500g dried cannellini or haricot beans soaked overnight and cooked
- 350g ripe tomatoes, puréed and sieved
- 3 garlic cloves, chopped
- 6 fresh sage leaves
- 1 tbsp tomato purée
- 1 tbsp white sugar
- Olive oil
What you do
For the pork, mix the garlic and rosemary together and make holes in the outside of the pork with a knife to stuff in mix. Place the pork – drizzled with olive oil and rubbed with seasoning – bones down, on a roasting tray. Add the white wine to the tray and place in a preheated 170°c oven for two hours. Baste occasionally and add water if required. When the juices run clear from the meat when pierced with a skewer or knife, leave to rest in a warm place for 20 minutes.
To make the bean sauce, heat some oil and fry the garlic and sage leaves until the garlic starts to brown. Add your cooked beans, and a touch of water if required. Mix in the tomatoes and pureé, and the sugar, and season to taste. Stir-cook for about 20 minutes.
To remove the meat from the bone, use a sharp knife and cut down close to ribs. Cut the deboned meat into slices one-inch thick, the set aside. Heat the remaining liquid in a roasting tray while stirring to scrape the bottom, adding more water if required, and pour into a jug.
Serve with boiled cabbage, and enjoy your hard work!
Red Cabot is interested in food, nature and small things. He sells his food at Westport Country Markets in St Anne’s Boxing Club, James’s Street car park, Westport, every Thursday, from 8am to 1pm.