Caramelised pork and kumara bites
Nici Wickes' caramelised pork and kumara bites make for sweet and juicy mouthfuls of perfectly soft pork atop red cabbage and sweet potato. This recipe is always popular!
- 500 g (3-4) pork fingers
- 1 tbsp rice bran oil
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 orange, juice and zest
- 2 tbsp rice vinegar
- 1 star anise
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3 orange kumara, scrubbed clean
- 1/4 red cabbage, finely shredded and massaged briefly (see recipe tip)
- 30 g butter
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp cider vinegar
- salt and pepper, to season
- fresh coriander, to garnish
- toasted sesame seeds, to garnish
- Preheat oven to 170ºC.
- Dry the pork skin thoroughly with paper towels. Rub with the oil and sprinkle with salt. Lay the strips skin-side up in an oven-proof dish.
- Mix the juice, zest, rice vinegar, anise and salt, then pour around the pork. Cover with foil and cook for 30 minutes. Remove the foil and turn each strip onto one side. Cook for a further 30 minutes or until the meat is soft and the fat rendered. Uncover, turn the strips to skin-side up again and place the tray towards the top of the oven. Increase the temperature to 230ºC and cook until the skin pops to crackling. Use the grill if you prefer, but watch closely.
- While the pork cooks, make the kumara and cabbage. Slice each kumara into 1cm-thick rounds (or lengthwise). Toast these in a toaster until just soft – they usually require about 2-3 cycles. Set aside.
- Sauté the cabbage on low to medium heat with the butter, brown sugar and cider vinegar. Cook until glossy and soft, and the sugar has caramelised – about 10 minutes.
- To serve, chop the pork into bite-sized chunks. Top each kumara slice with cabbage and pork. Season with salt and pepper, then scatter with the coriander and sesame seeds.