Apple and Pear Pulled Pork

This was delicious. I don't often come right out and say it, because often things can be improved. This probably can too, but right off the bat, this is a taste explosion. Sweet, salty, slightly peppery and earthy pulled pork. Paired with a sweet swede and parsnip puree and a crispy cured salad and some deliciously crunchy crackling, I had a combo worth sharing.

Ingredients

For the Pork

Pork Shoulder, about 1.5 kgs, skin removed for crackling.

1 Apple, stalk removed, quartered

1 Bosch Pear, stalk removed, quartered

3 Teaspoons of Dried Oregano

2 Teaspoons of Grated Ginger

1 Bulb of Garlic, peeled and minced

3 Onions, peeled and finely sliced

3 tomatoes, decent size

Salt

Pepper

Olive oil

For the Salad

6 Silverbeet Stalks, stalks removed and leaves finely sliced

1 Brown/White Onion, peeled and very finely sliced

2 Carrots, juiliened

Juice of One Lemon

Salt

Pepper

Olive oil

For the Swede and Parsnip Puree

1 Swede, peeled and diced

3 Parsnips, peeled and diced

100ml Cream

Salt

2 Cloves of Garlic, Peeled and Minced

Method

This is way more simple than you'd expect, despite the rather large ingredients list.

Dice the pork into chunks. Cut with the grain to ensure you get some nice long pieces of pork.

In a pot or in a pressure cooker, add a lug of olive oil and soften the onions, garlic and ginger. Once soft, toss in the pork chunks, apple, pear and tomatoes. Saute until the meat looks a slightly brown, then cover with water. If in a pressure cooker, pressure cook on a medium heat with high pressure setting for 30-40 minutes. Normal setting, cook on a medium heat for 3-4 hours.

Next, boil the swede, parsnip and garlic together in a pot until the swede is nice and tender. Once tender, blend in the water it was boiling in until really smooth. Transfer back to the pot, but through a sieve to separate any chunks that would spoil the creaminess.

Add cream and gently simmer the puree down. You'll want to reduce it to the point where when folded with a wooden spoon, the folds slowly return to a flat surface.

Now that you've got those two things on the go, move on to the salad. Really simply, mix carrot, silverbeet and onion together. Douse with lemon juice and about a teaspoon of salt. The salt and lemon juice will wilt the vegetables. The carrot will stay quite crunchy to add texture. Set aside while the rest cooks.

For the crackling, crank the oven to 200 C. Cut the pork skin into strips. Oil both sides and salt well. Put into the oven and roast skin side down for 15 minutes, then turn. Roast until bubbling and crispy.

Those are all the elements. Pull the pork apart with a fork and reduce the liquid.

Plate as above or in a big ol pile. Delicious.

Enjoy!

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