This week’s recipe from the top team at Hopgood’s & Co is for Pulled Pork Croquettes. Head chef Aaron Ballantyne says “this a fun dish to make with the kids and is perfect as an appetiser for a dinner party, the recipe is quite adaptable too, you could use roast ham or chicken instead of pork. Use very tender, juicy meat. Avoid left-over meat from a roast that has dried out.
“The main thing to remember if you are cooking this with the kids don’t let them near the oil used for frying the croquettes, that’s a job for adults.”
- 800g boneless pork shoulder or belly
- 1 tbsp brown sugar
- Salt and black pepper
- 660ml apple cider
- 200 g butter
- 1 onion, finely diced
- 1 small leek, finely sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 150 g flour
- 100 ml extra apple cider
- 400 ml milk
- 1 sprig thyme
- 1 cup grated aged cheddar
- 1/4 cup finely grated parmesan cheese
- 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 small bunch Italian parsley, chopped
- 1 cup plain flour
- 3 eggs, beaten
- 200 g panko breadcrumbs
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- Rub the brown sugar over the pork and season generously with salt and pepper.
- Put the pork in a big casserole dish, skin-side up, and pour over the cider. Cover with tin foil, then slow roast at 150C for about 5 to 6 hours, or until the meat is very tender and falling of the bone. Check every few hours in case it gets dry – if it does, add more cider or water to keep it moist.
- Remove the skin from the pork, then shred the meat using two forks, removing any excess fat or bone as you go.
- Meanwhile – Melt 50g of butter in a heavy-based pan, over a medium-low heat. Cook the onion for 5 minutes until softened, add the leek and garlic. Cook on low heat for 15-20 minutes, until the leeks and onion are tender. Lightly season. Drain off any excess butter, cool, then add to the shredded pork.
- Melt the remaining butter in a heavy-based pan over a medium-low heat. Whisk in the flour, and cook, stirring continuously for about 3 minutes. Whisk in the cider until the mixture is smooth. Gradually stir in the milk, a third at a time, until incorporated.
- Continue cooking and stirring for about 15 minutes until thickened and there is no raw flour taste. Add the thyme, cheddar, parmesan, Dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce and parsley.
- Cool slightly, then stir into the pork and leek mixture. Season. Cover and refrigerate overnight or until firm.
- Using clean hands roll the mixture into small cylinder shapes. Chill for 1 hour to firm.
- Arrange three wide shallow bowls in a row. Add the flour to one, the beaten egg in the second and the panko crumbs in the third.
- First roll the croquettes in the flour, then dip in the beaten eggs, drain well, then roll in the panko breadcrumbs to coat.
- Chill for at least 2 hours or until firm.
- Fry the croquettes in vegetable oil heated to 185°C until golden brown and piping hot in the middle. Drain on paper towels, season with salt, and serve.