I’m a lucky woman, I know it. (Well, OK, I know and acknowledge that most of the time!)
I have the life I’ve chosen myself, I work for myself, I have a lovely home and family. And I’m honest enough to admit that I have one of the rarest commodities in the world – a good marriage! Good marriages don’t just happen, I’ve found. It’s a matter of choosing a simpatico person, who allows you to grow and change, and wants you to allow him the same leeway. It’s about finding someone who is not just like you, but has complementary traits, is the yin to your yang.
I found just that someone, and I believe most of the time he feels the same. We both work hard at our marriage – like other things in life, nothing comes for free.
All that is an aside, as I’m really here to talk about his cooking. My husband has always enjoyed dabbling in the kitchen, but since we moved to Spain, he has finally had the time to let his creative side soar. Lucky old me, I get to reap the benefits! I cook too, of course, but I’m what I’d call a good, old-fashioned cook, handy with everyday dishes and a dab hand at making bread. Creativity with food is not my thing.
So let’s talk about Sunday night. We had bought some pork fillet (aka solomillo de cerdo) and didn’t quite know what to do with it. How shall we cook it, asks Kenton. (he knows I will reach for a cookbook!) He had other ideas, and in fact came up with a divine recipe that, if you can find the right ingredients, you’ll love, too.
But hands off the cook, he’s taken! 🙂
1 solomillo de cerdo (pork fillet), 8-10 inches in length
6-8 slices Jamon Iberico (long enough to wrap around the solomillo)
200 g Halloumi cheese
2 T finely chopped fresh sage (please don’t use dried)
4 cloves garlic, chopped
125 g small button mushrooms, thinly sliced
250 ml Pedro Jiminez Vino de Malaga (dulce)
1 T honey
1 oz butter
olive oil, salt, pepper
Parsley to garnish, chopped
Trim fat from the outside of the solomillo. Make a cut lengthwise along the meat all the way through, leaving about 1/2 inch of meat uncut (you want to be able to open the meat into one flat piece).
Open out the solomillo, cover with a piece of cling film, and gently flatten to 1/2 inch thick with a meat hammer. Season with salt and pepper, and spread the sage and garlic over the whole surface of the flattened solomillo.
Cut the Halloumi into slices about 1/4 inch thick, and layer along one side of the meat, overlapping if necessary. Fold the meat over the top of the cheese, pressing the edges to cover the cheese.
Wrap the solomillo roll with overlapping slices of the Jamon. Heat a frying pan to high heat, add 1 T oil and brown the pork all over, carefully turning it so that it doesn’t fall apart.
Put the pork into a roasting dish, along with a little bit of olive oil, place in a preheated oven (gas mark 7). Roast for 20 minutes. Turn oven down to gas mark 4, then finish roasting until the pork is done to your liking, probably another 20 minutes. Remove from oven, and leave to rest.
Using the same frying pan, add 1 T olive oil, and put on medium heat. Soften the sliced mushrooms in the oil, then add the wine. Lower the heat and simmer until the wine is reduced by 1/3. Add the honey and butter, continue to heat and stir until the sauce is thickened.
To serve, slice the pork into slices approximately 3/8 inch thick; arrange on a serving plate, then pour over the mushroom and wine sauce. Garnish with parsley and serve.