Saturday, 3 September 2011

Roast Pork and Other Adventures

I've been back in New Zealand for a week and what week it has been. I started back in my school after 2 and a half terms doing relief (substitute) teaching, while trying to find a job out of teaching. That in itself was an adventure and way out of my comfort zone; there are no jobs in the Wairarapa, unless I want to milk cows or drive fork lifts...and I don't. So back to relieving - I am definitely a nester...someone who likes to have a space and make it my own. So relieving, walking into someone else's class almost daily was a real adventure and I am pleased to tell myself, I did a good job. I got asked back to schools and got put on the top of their reliever's list. BUT being back in my own class is a real relief for the reliever. My kids have lots of learning to do about behaviour and expectations, but they will learn and we will enjoy the rest of our term and a half together.
Then there are my lovely pets...they keep me sane while living on my own. My cats were all here within two minutes of Carly delivering me home, my bunny was hopping round in her cage and George my gorgeous turtle, was swimming his wee heart out. Within an hour of returning I had cracked and destroyed his tank, but he is very happy in his new pimped out, bachelor pad aquarium. My frog Wellington enjoyed his holiday with Millie and I am very pleased to have them all home with me.

So on to dinner's Father's Day and I saw on Facebook, a friend saying she was cooking pork for her dad. My dad passed away in 1985, 2 weeks before my lovely Darren was born. Laughing...back then, whenever I cooked a roast, I had to ring mum...via a very expensive toll call, to ask how to cook it - and it still never turned out like hers.  So tonight, even though it's just for me, I decided to cook the perfect roast pork.
I've NEVER been able to cook pork crackling is always 'soggling' and when I put it under the grill to make it crackling, it usually ends up burnt. But tonight I am determined to become a roast pork queen. I have watched hours of FoodTV, I've taken on board every bit of advice and my pork has just completed the mandatory 15 minutes in a hot oven to ensure the crackling will crackle...stay tuned.

To go with it, I have adapted a recipe I saw on FoodTV this week. I LOVE leeks and think they are much maligned. On Ready Steady Cook UK, they did something with leeks and loads of cream, but I've made my own version which is possibly slightly healthier.
Cut a length off the leek, depending on how many you are cooking for.
Slice it in half lengthwise and wash.
Place into boiling, salted water until just soft.
Remove from the water and drain.
Place into a baking dish which has been sprayed with oil and smear with something like...sour cream, any dip, cream cheese etc. Then dot on parmesan or another cheese. Grill until bubbling. And enjoy!

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