Join us as Pete Evans shows you how to cook a pork rack using Borrowdale’s free range pork. The video contains specific steps, so stay tuned.
How to Cook a Pork Rack Using Borrowdale’s Free Range Pork
Good day, everyone. I’m going to show you how to make the most delicious pork rack using this Borrowdale Free Range Pork.
It is going to have the most amazing crackling. And we’re going to team it with some beautiful vegetables and fruits. We’ve got radicchio, we’ve got apple, we’ve got fennel, all these beautiful ingredients. We’ve got bitter aniseed (and also sweet and tart) that’s going to make this pork just absolutely shine.
But it is all about the pork. So I’m going to show you how to do it.
Have a look at that. It’s beautiful free range pork. Nothing better! This is one of those Sunday night roasts or mid-week roasts that everybody in the family is just going to love.
Make a Bed for the Pork to Sit On
Okay! First things first, we want to make a bed for the pork to sit on. A little bed is perfect. Any type of vegetables you like. We’ve got a couple of onions here. Roasted onions and pork just work so well.
Pop them into your pan. The pork is just going to sit on that very, very simply.
Now, the reason for that is so that the pork is raised, so it cooks evenly and we don’t get it crusty on the bottom. We want that beautiful skin to crackle up. And I’m going to show you how to do that.
A little bit of chicken stock or beef stock or even pork stock is going to be your friend. And you can see that it’s beautiful and hot. We’re going to add about a cup of this over the pork skin. It might seem counterintuitive, but the hot liquid is going to start that little cooking process and basically seal it.
Add More Fat
And now, it’s time to add even more fat into this delicious pork. You could use pork fat, being lard, you could use beef tallow or you could use coconut oil. It doesn’t really matter as long as it’s good saturated fat. That’s just going to make this beautiful and luscious. And it’s also going to help the spices that we’re about to put on stick to the pork.
We’ve got some ground fennel seed. Very simple! Grab some fennel, pop it in your mortar and pestle or you can buy it already ground. Sprinkle that over because fennel and pork is just a marriage made in heaven.
If you like, other types of seeds which work perfectly would be some caraway seed, cumin seed, coriander seed. Absolutely delicious!
And of course, salt. Crackling loves good quality salt. So, this is some sea salt. Or you could use some Himalayan crystal salt. Look at that. That’s looking so good.
We’ll sort of just press that in into the skin. So, there we go. Just press that salt and fennel mixture into the skin. And that is ready for the oven.
Put it in the Oven at 240° to 250° for about 20 Minutes
So, the pork goes into the oven at 240° to 250° for about 20 minutes. What you want is for that skin to start crackling. And then, we’re going to turn it down to 180° for about 30 minutes, but we’re going to stick some of this stuff into the pot. And it’s just going to be sensational!
So, what have we got? We’ve got fennel. As I’ve said before, fennel and pork, a marriage made in heaven. Not only are we using the seeds on the pork, but we’re using the fennel bulb to actually cook and roast in that beautiful stock.
I like it nice and chunky. Look at that. That’s beautiful. You can throw in these stalks as well or the stems. Yum!
And what’s really nice is garnishing with these little fennel ferns. They make the most beautiful little garnish or actually salad ingredients. So don’t throw them out. Flavour, flavour, flavour.
So, we’ve got the fennel. We’ve got some green apple or red apple. It’s up to you what you want to use. You can take the peels out if you like or leave them in. Some big chunks, there we go, some big chunks of apple. You could use pear or any type of fruit really. Pork works so well with so many different ingredients.
And last, but not least, radicchio. Radicchio is a beautiful bitter type of lettuce and, again, works sensationally with pork. When you think about it, pork is that beautiful natural fat, and a great thing to help cut through that, not only is acid, but bitterness as well.
So you’ve got the sweetness from the fennel or the aniseed as well as the apple. You’ve got that sweet and tart. And then, we finish off with beautiful bitterness. Just look at that colour there… sensational! And it’s so easy. It’s so easy… You just pop all of these into the tray when that pork crackle is crackling.
Put All the Delicious Fruits and Vegetables In
So, the pork’s been in the oven for about 20 to 25 minutes. Nice and hot at 250°. Now, we turn it down to 180° and we put all of these delicious fruits and vegetables in—the apple, the fennel, the radicchio. That’s going to take another 20 to 40 minutes depending on the size of your rack to cook all the way through so it’s lovely and moist. And the crackle, the skin, is still going to crisp up quite a bit more.
If, at the end, you’re not happy with the crackling, put the grill on and just really watch it because it can crisp up really fast. Here we go!
Into there, we’ll add some garlic, just some chopped garlic. Scatter that through. Add a squeeze of lemon. Again, the acid is going to work really well. Or you could use apple cider vinegar.
And for a little bit of sweetness—not necessary, but it is lovely—a little touch of maple syrup or raw organic honey. And that’s going to meld with all the juice and the broth and the spices and flavourings to make the most delicious sauce right at the end.
So, back in the oven, 180°, 20 to 40 minutes depending on the size of the pork.
Have a look at that. That just brings a smile to my face, all those beautiful vegetables and fruits. But the pièce de résistance is that pork. You hear that? That’s the crackling. That’s what we want.
Let it Rest for about 20 Minutes
So, we’ve rested it for about 20 minutes. Now, we can slice and play it up. Are you ready for this?
Have a look at that. That is just perfect! Juicy, succulent and crispy!
Alright! We plate it up. We have that radicchio. We’ve got the beautiful roasted apple sweetness. And all that fennel, have a look at that. And of course, the onion that we set the pork on to roast it, look at that!
Put that pork on. Hot!
And of course, we have the broth or the stock. We’re going to have the most beautiful pan juices. You don’t want to put that on the crackling because it’ll get soggy, but just over the meat. There we go!
You could serve that with a salad or just pop some of those fennel ferns on. We’ve got so many beautiful vegetables and fruits in there as well.
And last, but not least, my favourite—you don’t have to do this—but I love some roasted or toasted chilli flakes just to add a little bit of heat. Sensational!
What could be better? Roasted, free range pork rack with the most delicious vegetable and fruit accompaniment ever.
Are you interested to try this new recipe out? Check out Borrowdale’s stockists and find out where you can buy organic free range products in your area.
How to Cook a Pork Rack Using Borrowdale’s Free Range Pork
by Pete Evans