Pork is a staple in my refrigerator. With the exorbitant prices of fish and beef, pork and chicken have been my meat sources here in Finland. Chicken is a little bit more expensive than Pork and I’ve been having a difficult time finding chicken cuts that have not been pre-marinated. Hence, more pork than chicken in the diet.
Pork is like a blank canvas. You can do almost anything with it: Roast, Fry, Deep Fry, Bake, Saute, Ground, Boiled, Poached, and the list goes on and on. Pork is my canvas and I am the artist.
I constantly try to look for ways to jazz up and make pork a little bit more exciting to eat. Believe me, it hasn’t been easy. I am only 3 months into the year and I am running out of things to cook. It’s always good to experiment, though. I think I have mastered the art of improvising and creating dishes out of what I have.
Initially, I planned to cook Pork Afritada because I had tomato paste and chopped tomatoes at home. But this Pork Afritada plan turned into a Spanish influenced Pork and Sausage stew dish! No regrets, though. Every dish whipped up in the kitchen is something to be proud of.
Pork and Sausage Stew
Pork, cut into cubes
Potatoes and Carrots, cut into cubes
Sausage, cut into thin rounds (You can also use chorizo if it is available)
Onion, cut into cm thick strips
Garlic, 2 cloves, minced
Tomato and Onion, minced
Bay leaves, 2 pcs.
Tomato paste, 1 1/2 Tbsp
Sugar, 1 Tsp
Fish sauce, 1 Tbsp
Salt and Pepper to taste
Pork fat and skin, cut into small cubes (to be fried for garnish)
1. Heat a pot with oil. Add the garlic and the onions. Then add the tomato and onion mixture. Saute until the onions are translucent.
2. Add the pork and season it with salt and black pepper. Make sure that the pork gets browned and not burnt.
3. Add the sliced sausages to the pot.
4. Add the potatoes and carrots. Saute all the ingredients together.
5. Add the tomato paste and mix it altogether. Make sure the ingredients get covered in tomato paste and brown the tomato paste a bit (to lessen the acidity in it). Drop the bay leaves and fill the pot enough water to cover the pork.
6. Cover the pot and let it boil for 15 minutes. Add the sugar and the fish sauce. And, let it simmer on low heat for another 15 minutes or until the sauce is reduced into half.
7. While waiting for your stew, heat up a frying pan with oil. Fry the pork rind and fat until it becomes crispy and strain excess oil on a paper towel. Set aside for garnish.
8. When the stew is done (and the pork tender, the sauce reduced), transfer it to a serving dish and garnish the way you want to. I’d prefer to eat this with rice, of course. But, it would also be a good idea to serve it with toasty garlic buttered baguettes.
Happy Eating everyone! ^^