14th May 2013
Crispy pork belly with sage and butterbeans
Wine: 2012 Villiera Barrel Fermented Chenin Blanc (£11.49, 14%, Marks & Spencer)
This is one of those dishes where you could serve a light red as easily as a weighty, flavoursome white. I've gone with the latter, partly because I love this rich, oak-fermented Cape Chenin so much. It's ripe, with a little bit of honeyed sweetness and some exotic fruit notes, but the acidity of the grape ties the wine together on the finish, giving it length and freshness.
Ingredients 1.5kg (3lb 6oz) belly of pork, bone in, skin scored For the butterbeans 2tbsp olive oil 2 onions, peeled and finely chopped 3 carrots, peeled and cut into small dice 2 sticks celery, cut into small dice 2 garlic cloves, peeled and chopped 1 bay leaf 8 sage leaves 2 x 400g (14oz) tins butterbeans, rinsed 250ml (9fl oz) chicken or vegetable stock Preparation Preheat oven to 160 C, 140 C fan, 300 F, gas 2. Wipe the meat with kitchen paper so that it is dry. Sprinkle 1tbsp sea salt over the skin and rub in well. Season and place in a roasting tin, pour 150ml (1/4pt) cold water around the pork, place in the oven and roast for 41/4 hours, turning the tin occasionally. Afterwards increase the heat to 220 C, 200 C fan, 425 F, gas 7 to crisp the pork skin. To make the butterbeans, heat the olive oil in a saucepan, add the onions, carrots and celery and sweat for 10 minutes, then add the garlic, bay and sage and cook for a further two minutes. Add the butterbeans and stock, season and cook for 15 to 20 minutes. These can be prepared up to two days in advance. Allow the meat to rest for 15 minutes before carving into thick slices.