If you read my blog then you will notice that I have created a few easy Sunday 'roasts' that require very little input, save a few choice ingredients and plenty of time. Dishes that are ideal for leaving in the oven or slow cooker while you read the Suday papers or take a long walk to work up an appitite. No-one need know of your little secret as what you present at the table will blow your diner's socks off.
Pot roast shoulder of pork with fennel, shallots and potatoes
This particular cut is cheap but one of the best. It is really difficult to mess it up as it requires long slow cooking. I love these cuts of meat as they are so much more flavoursome than their flashier and more expensive butcher's slab brothers. Fennel, tarragon and cream have a wonderful affinity with pork and this makes for a fantastic plate of food. It is cheap too and comes in at around £2.50 per portion.
2 kg piece of pork shoulder
3 shallots or 1 onion, quatered
1 large or 2 small fennel bulbs, quatered
8 new potatoes, scrubbed and halved
100 ml dry cider (Aspall's organic is lovely)
100 ml double cream
a couple of sprigs of tarragon, finely chopped
1) Preheat your oven to hot. Place a little oil in a casserole or roasting tin and pop in the oven to heat up.
2) Season your pork and sit in the centre of the dish. Arrange the vegetables around, making sure there is a snug fit or they will burn. Pop in the oven for 20 minutes so the pork skin has a chance to crackle and the veg takes on a little colour.
3) Pour in the cider, cover with a lid and turn the oven down low, say about 120 degrees and leave to cook for about 4 hours, just watch the cider doesn't evaporate, it shouldn't as the shoulder of pork will release its juices, creating a lovely sauce.
4) Remove the meat and veg to a plate and keep warm, strain the cooking liquid into a sauce pan, reduce by boiling until you have about a quater of a pint, add the cream, bring to the boil and allow to thicken slightly. Stir in the tarragon and put on to simmer while you carve the pork and serve up.