Friday, 24 September 2010

Pork and cider with lentils

I'm on a roll with the slow cooker. Don't mind me.
This will serve two hungry people generously (depending on how generous you are with your veg!) at around 9 Points each. If you put the apple in, bump it up to 9.5. That's not bad for a hearty main meal.

2 medium pork loin steaks
200g red lentils (dried)
500ml cider (one can)
And then in whatever quantity you please:
Green beans
Garlic (okay maybe not loads of garlic, it will smother everything)
Green and/or yellow peppers
Fine beans

You also need
1 pork stock cube (Knorr are good)
About a pint of water
Salt and black pepper
Sage and a bit of thyme
A bay leaf

If you're feeling frisky then a couple of apples would be good too - peeled, cored and sliced/chopped, or one big Bramley.


As ever, start by browning off the sliced pork loin steaks. I say sliced; I like mine chopped up into the stew but you can leave it whole if you prefer. When it's looking golden, or even a bit burned if you're feeling daring, add the onions, garlic and celery, and gently saute until everything is softened and slippery.

At this point add the rest of the veg, turn down to halfway, cover and leave to cook down for a few minutes, til everything is a little softened. Add your herbs and season well. Add your cider and bring it up to the boil briefly before turning it back down, and while that's doing make up your pint of pork stock with your cube and some boiling water, and either decant the stew plus the stock and the lentils into your slow cooker, or add the lentils and the stock to the pan. Either way all you're doing now is covering it and leaving it to do its work. In the slow cooker I'd say anywhere between 5 and 8 hours depending on what setting you put it on, and on the hob, depending on how high you leave the heat, give it up to about an hour or so.

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