HAITIAN PORK GRILLOT
Griot/griyo/grillot (pronounced “gree-O”) is one of our best-loved dishes. It’s fried, marinated pork shoulder chunks, often served with fried plantains. You’ll never attend a celebration and not see it in bounty with “pikliz” sauce (a spicy pickled scotch bonnet dressing) on the side. I often have it when visiting Haitian friends in London or Glasgow. 2.3 kg pork shoulder, rind removed, cut in two-inch cubes 2 sour oranges, cut in half (or 3 halved limes if you can’t find sour oranges) 5 tbsps cider vinegar ½ tsp salt 1 tsp pepper 2 shallots, crushed and minced 4 garlic cloves, crushed and minced 1 small onion, minced Few sprigs parsley 1 tbsp dried thyme 1 Scotch bonnet pepper Oil for frying In a large pot, add the cubed pork. Rinse the meat with cold water and discard excess water. You can repeat this method once or twice more. Rub the citrus halves over the meat pieces, with the juices falling back into the pot and over the rest of the meat. This process is what Haitians call “cleaning” the meat. Don’t worry if you don’t clean every single piece, the juices will eventually touch all pieces. If there is any remaining juice in the halves, squeeze into the pot and discard the rinds. Add the remaining ingredients (except the oil) into the pot. Mix by spoon or by hand. Let the meat marinate at least 1 hour in the refrigerator. Overnight is preferable. To cook the meat, place pot on the hob. Add enough water to the meat and marinade until the water is just flush with the meat (the pieces needn’t be completely underwater) and cover with the lid. Boil the meat at medium-high heat for 25-40 mins until tender or until the water is nearly evaporated. Remove from heat and set the pot aside. The meat can then be pan-fried (traditional method) or oven-fried. To pan-fry: In a large frying pan, add enough oil so that it fills up a quarter to one-third of the pan for shallow frying. Heat oil until hot. Using a slotted spoon or tongs, add pork cubes to the pan. Do not add herbs, pepper or onions to the frying pan. Since the pork is already cooked, you need only to fry it until brown. Be aware that any fat rind on the cubes will cause the oil to fry and splatter. Once brown, remove each piece and place on plate with paper towels to soak excess oil. To oven-fry: Preheat oven (with a fan) to 175C/ gas mark 4 Place meat cubes in oven pan (with remaining juices if any) and bake for 40 mins or until golden brown. Serve with rice or plantains and some hot pepper sauce.