5 thyme sprigs
10 black peppercorns
1 rosemary sprig
½ bunch flat-leaf parsley, stalks reserved, leaves finely chopped
4 bay leaves
40 g lard or 2 tbsp olive oil
2 kg boneless pork shoulder, cut into 5 cm cubes
1 large onion, sliced
½ leek, white part only, thinly sliced
2 each carrots and celery stalks, finely chopped
6 garlic cloves, crushed
700 ml cider
40 g butter
60 g plain flour
double cream, to serve
3 kg pork bones, chopped into pieces (see Note)
60 g lard or 60 ml (¼ cup) olive oil
1 large carrot, roughly chopped
2 onions, unpeeled, halved
½ leek, white part only, thickly sliced
¼ celeriac, peeled, roughly chopped
600 ml cider
4 bay leaves
1 bunch flat-leaf parsley stalks
5 thyme sprigs
20 black peppercorns
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
To make pork stock, rinse pork bones in a bowl of water with 1 tbsp salt. Drain. Melt lard in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add carrot, onions, leek and celeriac, and cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 minutes or until softened. Add pork bones, then stir in cider and cook for 1 minute. Add herbs and spices and enough water to cover bones. Bring to the boil over medium heat. Reduce heat to low and simmer, skimming any impurities from the surface, for 3 hours. Strain through a muslin-lined sieve into a bowl, discarding solids. Set aside until needed. Makes 1.8 litres. You can make the stock up to 3 days ahead. Store it in an airtight container in the fridge.
To make a bouquet garni, place thyme, peppercorns, rosemary, parsley stalks, bay leaves and cloves in a piece of muslin. Gather to form a bag and secure with kitchen string.
Melt half the lard in a large saucepan over high heat. Season pork with salt and pepper, and cook, in 2 batches, stirring frequently, for 7 minutes or until starting to change colour. Transfer to a large bowl.
Melt remaining 1 tbsp lard over high heat. Add onion and cook for 3 minutes or until softened. Add leek, carrots and celery, and cook for 2 minutes or until starting to soften. Stir in garlic, then 350 ml cider and cook for 1 minute. Stir in pork, then remaining 350 ml cider. Add 750 ml pork stock to cover meat. Bring to the boil. Add bouquet garni, reduce heat to low and simmer, skimming frequently to remove any impurities, for 1¾ hours or until pork is tender. Remove bouquet garni.
Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and stir to form a roux. Cook for 3 minutes or until roux is light golden. Gradually add 800 ml stock, stirring after each addition, until smooth. Cook, stirring, over low heat for 10 minutes or until thickened. Pour the sauce into the pork stew, bring to the boil and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until well combined.
Season the cider pork stew with salt and pepper, scatter with chopped parsley and serve with double cream.
Ask your butcher to roughly chop the pork bones for you.
As seen in Feast Magazine, Issue 14, pg56.
Photography by Sean Fennessy