Wednesday, 25 April 2007

Kitchen Diaries: Pork and Lemon Polpettini (April 20)

Pork and Lemon PolpettiniHaving been raised as a non-pork eater (read Hindu), and lacking much experience cooking it or even eating it, when it comes to cooking a dish that calls for pork, I don’t feel very confident in the kitchen. I worry it is not seasoned properly, does not smell right and never sure if it I’ve cooked it for long enough, despite what recipe says. Despite the simplicity of this recipe, all of those thoughts were galloping through my head.

Anyway, this is the first time trying a Kitchen Diaries recipe where I have every single ingredient and did not have to improvise and skimp on anything, so I put my self-doubt aside and get stuck in.

Pork and Lemon PolpettiniI make fresh breadcrumbs out of half a ciabatta roll I baked the day before, chopping this up into the smallest crumbs possible, then make quick work of some curly parsley; chucking both of these into a large bowl along with all the other ingredients. The only thing that took any time at all was stripping the thyme leaves from the stalks and opening the tin of anchovies - yep, it was that quick.

The mixture comes to 19 balls, which I flatten slightly as instructed, dust with flour and leave to stand on a floured baking sheet until I’m ready to cook them.

Instead of pasta, I decide to serve these with a sweet potato and parsnip mash, and wait for their pot to boil before I start cooking the neat little patties. I’m extremely sensitive to the smell of chopped anchovies on my hands and despite washing them three times, twice with fresh lemon I can still get a faint whiff of fishiness. I wash them a fourth time while the meatballs bubble away in the butter and oil – success.

Once the patties are cooked I deglaze the frying pan (no heavy bottomed like Nigel's, unfortunately, but did the job just as well) with a little marsala wine before I pour in the stock, letting it bubble down to a shiny brown gravy.

Pork and Lemon PolpettiniNow, while these little meatballs are tasty – all lemony and slightly anchovied; delightlfully crispy on the outside but greatly textured within, I hesitate to descibe them as the the most delicious ones I’ve ever eaten - as much as I'd hoped I could. Sorry Nige. You see, the mother-in-law is Swedish, and they've spent centuries perfecting their's!
food nobody

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emilya said...

Here's the recipe on!

emilya said...

...and, I made these the other night. I substituted rosemary and fennel seeds for the parsley and thyme - my lordy, it was good! But then, I don't have any Swedes in the family. Only turnips (ha ha).