Food stylist Natalie Bell (082 575 4411) serves up English country food with spicy accents for a memorable winter lunch
For the slow-roasted pork:
- 2kg neck and pork end shoulder, derinded, boned and butterflied (you could also use pork belly)
- 60ml olive oil
- 2 large onions, peeled and thinly sliced
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed
- 45ml fennel seeds
- 10ml ground cloves
- 30ml finely-chopped rosemary
- 6 fresh bay leaves
- 10ml salt
- 15ml crushed black peppercorns
- fresh lavash flatbreads or tortilla wraps, to serve
For the herb sauce (makes 2 cups):
- 1 large bunch flat-leaf parsley (at least 60g), washed and stalk ends removed
- 1 large handful fresh coriander, stalks removed
- 8 anchovies
- 4 cloves garlic
- 15ml grainy mustard
- 350ml extra-virgin olive oil
- salt and freshly ground pepper
To make the slow-roasted pork:
1. Get your butcher to flatten the meat to a 3cm thickness with a mallet. It should be about the size of an A4 page to facilitate rolling.
2. Heat half the oil in a frying pan and soften the onions. Then add half the garlic and half the fennel seeds and 5ml ground cloves, all the rosemary and the bay leaves, the salt and pepper and cook for a few more minutes. Allow to cool.
3. Spread this mixture evenly over the opened out pork and rub in well. Roll up the pork as tightly as you can and secure with butcher’s string at close intervals. Mix the remaining garlic, fennel seeds and ground cloves with the remaining olive oil and rub over the surface of the pork. Cover loosely with foil, place in the fridge and allow the flavours to infuse overnight.
4. Remove the pork from the fridge and bring to room temperature before cooking. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Place the pork in a roasting tin and cook for 3½–4 hours. The flesh should be dark and sticky and meltingly soft. You could tent it with foil for the last hour if you feel it’s blackening too much.
5. Remove from the oven, allow to rest and when ready, slice thinly and cram into fresh lavash pockets. Don’t forget to anoint with liberal amounts of herb sauce before tucking in.
To make the herb sauce:
1. Place all the ingredients except the oil into a food processor. Process well, then slowly add the olive oil to make a thick unctuous mass. Season to taste.
2. Pour into a glass jar and refrigerate until required.
This recipe feeds a crowd.