I’ve never liked pork much but my love has increased with the years and at the moment it is definitely my favourite meat. I slow-roasted pork shoulder recently and served it with deep fried potatoes and a red onion jam. My daughter said that this was the best dish that she has ever eaten and asked if we couldn’t eat this dish every evening! She has now declared it as her all-time favourite food.
Today’s pork meat is much leaner than a couple of years ago. Did you know that pork is an excellent source of thiamine, niacin, riboflavin, vitamin B-6, phosphorus, zinc, potassium and protein? These nutrients are essential to our health.
Since today’s pork is much leaner than before, care must be taken not to overcook the meat. In the past I believed that pork must be well done, and I think that is the reason why I was never fond of pork. Overcooking pork can dry the meat out, which is, of course, not very tasty.
When I took part in Dinner Divas, my main dish was pork fillet with a tomato sauce. Unfortunately the pork fillet was well done and one of the judges, Aubrey Ngcungama, said it was the saddest piece of pork that he had ever seen. I still, however, won that part of the competition and this recipe is still one of my most favourites.
Pork goes very well with something sweet, like apples or onion marmalade. I made this pork fillet stuffed with prunes for a special occasion. I cooked individual portions of the pork fillet stuffed with prunes for each person and it looked like a little gift parcel for each guest! Since the pork fillets are wrapped in dough, I did not serve any additional starch with the meat, but instead served it with vegetables. The recipe is fairly simple, one you should definitely try at home!
- 250g dried prunes
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 4 cloves
- 800g pork fillet
- salt and black pepper to taste
- olive oil
- 400g shortcrust pastry
- 1 egg, beaten
- Place the dried prunes, cinnamon stick and cloves in a heat-proof bowl and cover with boiling water. Let it stand for 30 minutes.
- Drain the water from the prunes and remove the pips. Place the prunes in a food processor and process until mashed.
- Pre-heat the oven to 180⁰C.
- Season the pork fillet with salt and pepper.
- Heat the olive oil over medium heat in a frying pan and brown the fillet on all sides. Remove from heat and cool down.
- Slice the pork open and fill with the mashed prunes.
- Roll out the short crust pastry on a lightly floured surface and wrap the fillet in the pastry.
- Place on a baking tray and brush with the beaten egg.
- Bake in the pre-heated oven for approximately 20 minutes until the dough is browned and cooked.