Crackling. CRUNCHY crackling. Gorgeously golden, so fingerlickin’ salty, and so perfectly crackled you hear it shatter in your ears, and all lined with a layer of sweet creamy fat that melts on your tongue. OMG! Died and gone to heaven with this one. Get the deep casserole out and get this humming along in the oven one night soon. How can you get such crunchy crackling when the pork and beans are submersed in liquid? Just trust me. This is pork ‘n beans Boston style and they’ve been cranking it for years. The beans emerge squishy-tender, imbued with smoky porky-ness – yep, I’ve tucked a couple of bacon bones in there for added flavour. It could be your go-to dish this Saturday night while the rugby giants thrash it out, and if your team loses, at least you’ll have something scrumptious to eat … Check it out Pork Belly with Boston Baked Beans Make double if you’ve got a crowd coming. And there’s plenty of good stuff to read about beans and pulses – last year was the International Day of the Pulse. Take a moment to see why it’s important to get more people eating them. Pulses – All you need to know
Centre stage this week is cauliflower, finally dropping in price and readily available. At a glance this looks like a pretty radical salad combination: since when have you seen cauliflower and mandarins cosy up to each other? But add a swish of tahini, yoghurt and mint sauce to the plate, a drizzle of pomegranate molasses, and a smattering of salty spicy almond on top, and it all makes sense. It’s quite delicious. When to serve it? Alongside a roast chicken, perhaps. Or a ham steak, or with a baked fish. Or just go for broke and serve it with a whole lot of other exotic vegetable and grain dishes. Cauliflower Salad with Mandarins & Fried Almonds
And if you want to read about Pomegranate Molasses and Mandarins just click the links.
I’ve also re-posted Green Cauliflower Salad, with sultanas, chilli flakes, capers and sherry vinegar because this also gives cauli a bit of a flavour boost.
Broccoli has got to figure in here somewhere because it has been a dependable green throughout winter, and does the business for us health-wise, but, mmm, steamed nude broccoli can get a bit tiresome, or as Ilaria would say, ‘it’s a bit spooky’. She had some broccoli left over from her flatbreads last week so whizzed them up into a very acceptable and tasty midweek dish with fried red onion. I reckon this is the perfect thing to go with a fluffy potato mash, and either a meat or vegetarian sausage, and dare I say it, a splash of ketchup.
Go on, get the pork on, it’s a cracker!