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Beer-Marinated Rack Of Pork  With Jeff’s Chard Gratin © Home Comforts by James Martin (Quadrille, £20) is out now. Photography: Yuki Sugiura
January 2015
Reading time 5

This to me is a lazy dish: marinate it the day before in a beery brine, then slam it in the oven while watching football on the box

But it tastes great...
  • For the pork
  • 2 tbsp sea salt
  • 2 tbsp dark brown sugar
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 4 garlic cloves, lightly crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 tbsp yellow mustard seeds,
  • 1 tbsp soaked in water overnight
  • 4 sprigs of thyme
  • 4 sprigs of flat-leaf parsley
  • 500ml beer, preferably a good ale
  • 1–1.2kg 6-rib pork loin rack, French-trimmed
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 100g brioche, roughly torn
  • 1 tsp English mustard powder
  • 1 tbsp brown mustard seeds, soaked in water overnight
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • For the gratin
  • 700g chard, chopped into 2cm pieces
  • 2 large potatoes, peeled and cut into
  • 1–1.5cm chunks
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 50g plain flour
  • 400ml whole milk
  • 200ml chicken stock
  • 100g gruyère cheese, grated
  1. Pour 100ml of cold water into a saucepan, add the sea salt and sugar and heat until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat. Now mix in 400ml of cold water, the peppercorns, garlic, bay, unsoaked yellow mustard seeds, thyme, parsley and beer.
  2. Put the pork loin into a large bowl or sealable bag then pour in the liquid and cover. Place in the fridge for 24 hours, turning occasionally.
  3. When ready to cook, preheat the oven to 200C/gas mark 6. Remove the pork from the bag and pat dry. Heat a large frying pan over a medium heat, then add the butter and heat until foaming. Carefully seal the pork on each side until light golden brown, then transfer to a roasting tray. Roast for 15 minutes.
  4. Put the brioche, mustard powder and soaked yellow and brown mustard seeds into a food processor and blitz to a paste, then season. Set aside.
  5. Meanwhile, make the gratin: layer half the chard and potatoes into an ovenproof dish, scatter over the onion, then place the rest of the chard and potatoes on top.
  6. Put the butter in a saucepan and melt, then add the flour and cook for a couple of minutes until light golden brown. Add the milk gradually, whisking until you have a smooth white sauce, then whisk in the stock and half the cheese and cook until melted. Season with salt and pepper, then pour the sauce over the chard and potatoes and top with the remaining cheese.
  7. After the pork has been cooking for 15 minutes, spread the brioche paste over the top. Decrease the oven temperature to 180C/gas mark 4, then return it to the oven for 45 minutes to crisp the crumb and finish cooking the pork through. Place the gratin in the oven at the same time.
  8. Remove the pork from the oven and rest for 15 minutes, while the gratin finishes cooking.
  9. Carve the pork and serve with the chard gratin.
  10. Back to James Martin: Home Comfort Recipes

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