SLOW-COOKED PORK CHEEKS WITH HERB FREEKEH, KALE & WHITE BEAN PUREE
⅔ cup olive oil 1kg pork cheeks, trimmed* 2 brown onions, peeled, sliced 5 garlic cloves, peeled, crushed 2 teaspoons smoked Spanish paprika** ¾ cup Pedro Ximénez sherry 1L good-quality chicken stock 1 cup vegetable oil ½ bunch kale, stalks removed 60g butter 1¼ cups freekeh, rinsed, drained*** 1 bunch chives, finely chopped 1 bunch sage, leaves picked, finely chopped 1 bunch tarragon, leaves picked, finely chopped
WHITE BEAN PUREE
2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 brown onion, peeled, sliced 1 garlic clove, peeled, crushed 400g can cannellini beans, rinsed, drained ⅓ cup pure cream Heat 1/ 3 cup of olive oil in a large, heavy-based flameproof casserole pan over a medium-high heat. Cook pork cheeks for 8 minutes or until golden all over. Transfer pork to a plate. Add remaining oil and reduce heat to medium-low. Cook onion and garlic, stirring, for 5 minutes or until softened. Add paprika and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until aromatic. Add sherry and simmer for 20 minutes or until reduced by half. Return pork to pan. Add stock and bring to boil. Simmer, partially covered, over a low heat for 2½–3 hours or until pork is very tender. Meanwhile, to make white bean puree, heat oil in a frying pan over a medium heat. Cook onion and garlic, stirring, for 3 minutes or until softened. Add cannellini beans and cook, stirring occasionally, for 6 minutes or until softened. Add cream and bring to boil. Set aside for 5 minutes to cool. Transfer cannellini mixture to a food processor and process until a smooth puree forms. Season with sea salt and black pepper. Heat vegetable oil in a deep saucepan over a medium-high heat (when oil is ready a cube of bread will turn golden in 10 seconds.) Add 5 pieces of kale and deep-fry for 5 seconds or until crisp. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel. Season with sea salt. Repeat, in batches, with remaining kale. Melt butter in a saucepan over a medium heat. Add freekeh and stir to coat in melted butter. Cover with water and bring to boil. Simmer, covered, for 20 minutes or until freekeh is tender. Drain. Transfer to a bowl. Add chives, sage and tarragon, and stir to combine. Spoon white bean puree onto serving plates. Top with freekeh mixture and pork cheeks. Spoon over pan juices and garnish with kale. * You will need to order pork cheeks from a butcher. Ask for 12 pork cheeks without the jowls. ** Available at gourmet food stores and delicatessens. *** Freekeh is roasted green wheat. Available at health-food stores and some supermarkets.
SHAVED SQUID WITH CHIVES
Serves 6 (See photograph, page 70) 10 medium white onions, peeled, halved 40g speck, thinly sliced* 2 tablespoons olive oil 4 medium squid tubes, cleaned, cut into very thin strips 1 bunch chives, finely chopped small red-veined sorrel leaves and young coriander leaves, to garnish (optional) Preheat oven to 150°C. Place onion, speck and 12/ 3 cups water in a deep baking dish. Cover with baking paper and foil. Bake for 1½ hours or until onion is very soft and translucent. Strain broth through a fine sieve set over a heatproof bowl. Using back of a large spoon, press solids to extract as much broth as possible. Discard solids. Transfer broth to a small saucepan and place over a medium-low heat until ready to serve. Heat oil in a medium frying pan over a medium-high heat. Cook squid, stirring, for 1–2 minutes or until just cooked. Add chives and toss to combine. Spoon squid mixture into centres of serving bowls. Spoon warm broth around squid. Garnish with red-veined sorrel and coriander leaves, if desired.
Available at supermarkets, delicatessens and some butchers.