Do you know my favourite thing about winter?

It’s that I can get the slow cooker out and make stew, or do a roast dinner, and the kitchen doesn’t itself become an oven. I’ve finally learnt how to make decent roasties as well. I’m not up to trying yorkshires yet though.

Today I’m trying out a recipe I found on another WordPress blog, Ozark Pagan Mamma, for pork and apple stew. Depending on how it turns out I’m considering it for my Yule and Mothers Night meals. It’s an odd, to me anyway, recipe, because I’m used to making stew with quite a lot of stock. There is no stock in this recipe, just some apple juice or apple cider vinegar.

This is my take on the recipe I’ve linked to.

Veg – carrots, parsnips, leeks, onions, sweet potato – and peeled, chopped cooking apple, are fried off in the pan with a bit of oil. When the onion starts to brown, dump them in the bottom of the slow cooker.
Next, brown some diced pork and season with salt and pepper, in the same frying pan. Layer the browned meat on top of the apple/veg mix.
Finally, heat apple juice in the same frying pan, add pinch ground cloves, sage and thyme. Simmer, mix and scrape up any bits left from cooking the veg and meat. Pour in to the slow cooker. I added a little extra juice because it looked wrong with so little liquid. Leave to cook until the pork is tender, so several hours.

I’ll report back later with my findings.

I was going to try a batch of gingerbread biscuits today as well but I’m out of soft brown sugar; I’d have to get dressed and actually leave the house to go get that. I suppose, since the hell hounds are giving me evils because they want their walk NOW, I could go past the shop on the way home?

I’m going to be baking this afternoon aren’t I? And I’d planned to spend the afternoon writing…

The stew is amazing! The pork is tender and the veg soft. It doesn’t need stock, the apple juice is enough. Also, as it cooks the meat and veg render down a bit so it makes a sort of gravy. The cloves, which I thought I’d been over generous with were just right, at least for my pallet. I served the stew with warm buttered bread.

My belly is full!

I made 3-flour, 8-grain bread buns this afternoon and am partway through making the gingerbread. My house smells of meat and spices.

Oh ma belly!


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