Milk-roasted Pork with Cinnamon, Orange and Bay
It sounds surprising, but milk tenderises pork. Be careful not to overcook it though. Ask your butcher to ‘French trim’ the pork for you. It looks beautiful.
|1kg (2¼lb)||pork loin|
|1 tbsp||ground coriander|
|1 tbsp||fennel seeds|
|2 tbsp||olive oil|
|570ml (1 pint)||full-fat milk, or 1 tbsp double cream mixed into 550ml (18fl oz) semiskimmed milk|
|Grated zest of 1 orange|
|1 tsp||plain flour|
|400ml (14fl oz)||chicken stock|
|1 tbsp||double cream (optional)|
|Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper|
Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. If your butcher has not already done it, slash the crackling fat with a sharp knife. Mix together the coriander, fennel seeds and some salt and pepper and rub this all over the meat. Heat the oil over a medium heat in the smallest roasting tin the pork will fit into. Lay the meat fat-side down and fry the fat first – it may spit, so be careful. Brown the pork all over, then remove it from the heat.
Pour the milk into the roasting tin and add the cinnamon, orange zest and bay leaves. Roast for 1½ hours, basting the pork with the milk every 25 minutes. The milk will reduce during the cooking. When it is time to remove the pork from the oven, you should be able to poke a skewer into it and, when you take it out, the juices should run clear. The crackling should be lovely and crisp, but if it isn’t quite there yet, slice it off the meat, place it on a roasting tin and put it back into the oven for 10 minutes. Leave the pork to rest for 20 minutes. Then remove it from the tin and leave to rest for a further 10 minutes on a plate.
Pour the milky porky residue and aromatics remaining in the tin into a small pan on a low heat. Whisk in the flour and heat until it begins to bubble. Stir in the stock little by little, then leave it to simmer away for 2–3 minutes, or until the sauce has begun to thicken.
Sieve the sauce to get the aromatics and any larger lumps out. It will still have fine lumps and if this really bothers you, stir in a tablespoon of double cream. Season the sauce.You should get hits of all the flavours, with natural added sweetness from the milk. Serve the pork cut between the bones like chops, with a drizzle of sauce.