Until recently, it had been years since I ate pork. Memories of chewy pork chops and roasts that didn’t really do it for me (sorry Mum!) completely turned me off to pork. It was only when pork escalopes appeared in my Abel and Cole meat delivery box that I was forced to reconsider. Initially very unsure of whether I would like them at all, I decided to try them anyway. I chose a classic combination of flavours that I like, to give me the best chance of enjoying them, and I cooked them slowly in liquid, to help keep the moisture in and tenderise the pork.
The result was actually a very pleasant surprise, and so delicious that I’ve cooked it twice since that first experiment! I have refined the recipe a bit, to get the quantities right, but I have definitely changed my mind about eating pork. I decided the recipe was so good that it needed to be shared, and hopefully you’ll like it as much as I do! And if you have any pork sceptics in your family, this could be a good place to start in changing their mind…
This recipe is perfect at this time of year, when apples are in season, and the nights start to get chilly. A warming dinner is exactly what I want in the evening! Cooking apples are best in this recipe, as they are delicious slowly cooked into the sauce to serve over the pork, without being too sweet. If you can’t get cooking apples though, go for a less sweet variety like Granny Smith.
Pork with Apples, Sage and Cider Recipe
Serves 2, cooking time 1 hour, 15 mins
2 pork escalopes (approx. 150g each)
1 tbsp rapeseed oil
2 medium cooking apples, e.g., Bramley, sliced into 1cm pieces
1 small red onion, finely chopped
2 sprigs fresh sage, washed, leaves separated
Vegetable stock pot or stock cube
Preheat the oven to 160˚C.
Put a non-stick casserole pan over a high heat, add the oil and brown the pork escalopes on each side, then remove onto a plate and put to one side.
In the same pan, turn down to a medium heat and add the onions. Fry until softened and add the sliced apples, sage, cider and the stock pot.
Bring to a simmer and nestle the pork amongst the apple slices.
Add enough boiling water to cover the pork, then place in the oven for 1 hour.
Check on it occasionally to make sure the water doesn’t dry up and that any edges out of the liquid aren’t burning. Add more liquid or push edges into the liquid if needed.
After the hour, remove from the oven and place the pork on a plate.
To reduce the sauce, place the pan over a high heat and bring it to a rapid boil. Add 2 tbsp of gravy powder to thicken the sauce and stir until smooth. Boil until the sauce is your preferred thickness.
Serve over mustard mash, with greens.