Thursday, December 14, 2006

Blackened barbecued pork fillets

On an ill-advised leaving do at work some years ago held in the Newcastle branch of Old Orleans, I ordered blackened chicken; it arrived cremated. I sent it back; they returned another burnt offering; I gave up, and had toast when I got home. So many collective work dinners turn out that way; the thought of going out, paying a lot of money, eating burnt food and talking about work can be decidedly unappealing. Anyway I now avoid ordering 'blackened' anything like the plague, for fear of more inedible dinners. That embargo does not extend to home cooking, and my friend Kirsten had already tried Jamie's blackened pork fillets and praised them, so I was not particularly anxious about creating a home-made version of blackened food.

The recipe was easy: marinade one pork fillet per two people in a mixture of crushed cloves, cumin and fennel seeds, paprika, orange zest and juice, thyme, garlic, ketchup and balsamic vinegar for at least an hour but up to half a day. When you're ready, barbecue or grill them until nicely charred.

I should say at this point that our grill is ridiculously feeble; it char-grills only in the loosest possible sense, but it did eventually succeed. I served this with sweet potato and carrot mash, and sprouts (okay the sprouts don't particularly go, but I had some to use up... and they tasted good!).

I enjoyed this dinner, but not as much as I would have had it been barbecued on a proper hot flame. Similarly I think the whole vibe of the barbecued dish would be better in July than in deepest darkest December; it worked, but it didn't make my taste buds sing. That will teach me to try dishes that would, I could tell as I ate it, be fabulous in the summer, in December.

Reading this back, I don't at all want to imply that I didn't like this - we both liked it a lot. I do feel, though, that food tastes differently according to the climate, and I could imagine this on a hot summer's day with a cold beer, as Matt Skinner suggests, more than on a windy December dark night with a glass of red. I will make it again, but I'll wait until the seasons change.

On another note, my lovely husband has ordered me some gingerbread syrup as I have been wanting it since I read Nigella's 'Christmas in a glass' recipe in the Radio Times. How lucky am I? We have also, finally. put up the tree, and the house feels gloriously Christmassy and I predictably feel that the holidays have begun, which obviously they have not. I had better wait for that gingerbread syrup to arrive.


FreyaE said...

Kathryn, I must admit to falling in love with Nigella's show this wednesday. I guess I had gotten into the groove with it more this week..I'm craving those little peanut butter cups and the poussins!
Where did your hubby order the Gingerbread Syrup from? This sounds like an Unusual Ingredient of the Week!!
Freya x

Ian said...

I made this dish in the dead of winter, but on a grill. It was one of the best things I've ever cooked. Mine was nicely blackened and marinated for 48 hours. You could taste a nice hint of citrus right in the middle of the pork fillet. Scrumptious! Add some collard greens and rosemary potatoes for real warmth.

I only made the pork fillet, not sure what this was over....

Anonymous said...

Now I am ready to do my breakfast, later than having my breakfast coming over again to read
other news.

Also visit my website - latiguillo

Anonymous said...

It's wonderful that you are getting thoughts from this paragraph as well as from our argument made here.

Also visit my blog post retain

Anonymous said...

Does your site have a contact page? I'm having problems locating it but, I'd like to send you
an e-mail. I've got some recommendations for your blog you might be interested in hearing. Either way, great website and I look forward to seeing it develop over time.

Visit my page haunt

Anonymous said...

Having read this I believed it was extremely
enlightening. I appreciate you taking the time and effort to put
this content together. I once again find myself personally spending a lot of time both reading and leaving comments.

But so what, it was still worthwhile!

Feel free to surf to my website tongs

Anonymous said...

Incredible story there. What happened after? Take care!

Review my blog post; personal loans veterans

Anonymous said...

We're a group of volunteers and opening a new scheme in our community. Your site offered us with valuable information to work on. You have done a formidable job and our entire community will be thankful to you.

my blog; rulebook

Anonymous said...

For hottest information you have to pay a visit the web and on the
web I found this web site as a best web site for most recent updates.

My website :: fayetteville

Anonymous said...

Thanks for another fantastic post. Where
else could anybody get that type of information in such a perfect method of writing?
I have a presentation subsequent week, and I am
on the look for such information.

Also visit my web-site maisonette

Anonymous said...

I love your blog.. very nice colors & theme. Did you create this website yourself or did you
hire someone to do it for you? Plz answer back as I'm looking to design my own blog and would like to find out where u got this from. thank you

Here is my blog: