Serves: 4 - Time:
This dish was inspired by the wonderful Cypriot dish lamb tava. I didn’t see why the principles of tava couldn’t work with a shoulder of pork and some fennel. Not only is it incredibly easy to prepare but it’s economical too. All the ingredients are loaded into a casserole dish and cooked for just under three hours, by which time the pork, fennel and onions are meltingly soft and the potatoes have soaked up all the flavours of the dish.
- 1kg shoulder of pork, rind removed and meat cut into 4cm chunks
- 750g potatoes, peeled and cut into 4cm chunks
- 3 heads of fennel, trimmed and outer leaf removed (save some fronds for garnish)
- 2 large red onions, peeled
- 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 2 ½ teaspoons Maldon salt
- 1 heaped teaspoon dried oregano
- 130ml extra-virgin olive oil
- 100ml dry vermouth eg. Nouilly Prat
- 150ml water
- To serve finely chopped parsley and fennel fronds
- Heat the oven to fan 160°c, gas mark 4. Put the pork and potatoes into a large lidded casserole dish. Quarter the fennel bulbs (or cut each into six chunks if the bulbs are large) and halve the onions and cut each half into four wedges. Add the vegetables to the casserole.
- Sprinkle over the cumin seeds, salt and oregano. Pour over the olive oil, vermouth and water. Mix everything together really well and season with ground black pepper. Cover the top of the casserole with foil and put on the lid.
- Cook in the oven for 2 hours. Turn the oven up to fan 180°c, mark 6. Remove the lid and foil and stir the pork and vegetables. Return to the oven for 30 minutes by which stage there should be a little colour to the meat and vegetables. Leave for five minutes. Sprinkle with parsley and fennel fronds and serve.