spicy korean pork

Spicy Korean pork, just below all this guff and nonsense. I remember making a mistake when I posted a recipe for Mongolian beef and captioning it with a picture of a lovely little dog I’d been walking. Some simpleton with a face like she’s been flossing her minge with barbed wire sent me a big stroppy email suggesting that I was insinuating that Mongols eat dogs and that I was a horrendous racist on a par with Hitler. Which is silly, because I’d look dreadful with a toothbrush moustache. At least a messy beard hides the stretchmarks, that’s what I say. So just to be clear, this spicy Korean pork is made with pork. You know, like the name suggests. Now, before we go further, the next post contains lewd scenes and blue language. If you’re of the sort who already has angry person letterhead on the desk, just scroll on by. It’s simple!

Anyway, Paul and I are out and about tonight, so I’m going to bring in a guest writer for tonight’s post, who is going to talk to us all about online dating. This isn’t an area I’ve had much experience in – see when I was growing up, it was just a case of logging into gay.com, putting 14/m/newc in and twenty minutes later I was being bundled into a transit van for puppies and sweets. I’m kidding, I was legal age and too fat to bundle anyway. Roll, perhaps. I had an awkward date with someone who bought me a necklace from Argos and then didn’t say a bloody word as we tortured ourselves through a Pizza Hut buffet. Paul had someone give him a £20 Argos gift-card with £4.98 left on it. Still, both of our gentleman suitors received anal in exchange. We don’t fuck about at twochubbycubs! Over to our guest writer, then. As usual, because I’m a big egotistical horror, I’ll be butting in, and also, please remember that these guest writer articles give someone a chance to tell a story – don’t be mean! Lots of feedback please! All those who have submitted articles, we’re aiming for one a week and I’m drawing randomly. If you’ve sent in stuff and haven’t made it online, don’t cut yourself, you’ll be cubbed up soon enough. Anyone else who wants a go leave it in the comments below. I’ll be the only one to see it, don’t worry!

Our guest writer tonight is Helen “Whistling Canyon” G. I asked her what her party trick was and she replied something incoherent about a Premier Inn and a hockey team, so who knows…?


clicking – by Helen “Whistlin’ Canyon” G

I ventured into the world of online dating for six months a few years ago, This was before the days of Tinder mind, so I have no idea about this swiping left or right stuff. I’d only swipe left and right when I was alone in the bath. Like rubbing ink off a hand. Back when I was doing online dating you simply messaged someone and hoped they replied, and then didn’t turn out to be a weirdo / murderer. Sadly, they often do, but ah well, needs must.

My first date was only a couple of days after I joined, and I was surprised. I had thought nobody would message a fatty like me! The guy seemed OK, we had a couple of coffee dates, and a couple of nights out for drinks at country pubs. All seemed OK. Then he asked me did I want to come to his house and he would cook for me – and I could stay over. I figured, yeah go on then – I had only been single a couple of months after a long term relationship and I had no idea what was the decent amount of time these days before someone gets a look at your bits. (James: it’s usually about fifteen seconds, just enough to shake the drips off)

He picked me up and said we would call at the supermarket on the way to his for the ingredients and some wine. Perfect – though it would mean a lot of ‘no no, put it back, I don’t eat chocolate’ and fakery. Plus what if he took me down the lube and condoms aisle and spent ten minutes giving me knowing winks and leers? As long as he didn’t pick up a box of Trim, I didn’t care. Hell, if he picked up a box of Magnum XXL I’d have let him ravish me amongst the frozen peas. Anyway, off we went, with me full of excitement for what treats awaited me…and he proceeded to buy reduced chicken breast – you know the ones with the yellow stickers on that need to go now before they go off in the next few hours? Yep, them. The ones that cause fights amongst the blue-haired, yellow-chinned folk. And then we went to the wine aisle and he told me to choose anything from the three for a tenner deal. Charming. I’m not a snob but surely the first time you cook for someone new you would at least let them feel they are worth full price chicken? Or if you really want to buy a bargain, don’t take them with you? Swap them out into a Waitrose bag and make your date feel like a queen? He also bought two apples for pudding. Hmm. (James: to be fair, I used to buy oranges before a hot date. Keeps them quiet if you jam one in their gob. If you’ve got a fat date, make it a chocolate orange. It’s like poppers for us chunkers)

We got to his house and I soon noticed none of the door frames had doors attached. I mentioned this and he said he didn’t like doors and he liked his cat to have free run of the house. Fine, but this included  the toilet. No door on the toilet – fuck that! I’m all for being open but no-one needs to see me grunting away like Mel Smith solving a wordsearch as I have a crap. Plus, he was always kissing his cat and then trying to kiss me with an inch of cat hair stuck to his stubble. I’m not going to lie, I did envision to start with that he might end up with hairs from a pussy caught in his stubble, but not this way. NOT THIS WAY. No offence to cat owners by the way. I would feel the same if it was dogs, horses, sheep – anything. Needless to say that didn’t really go anywhere.

My next date was with a guy who spent two weeks asking me to go on a date with him, then not being able to make it, so rearranging – when we finally went out we had an alright night but he didn’t look at all like his photos and his craic was shit! Then he told me he was moving to France so wasn’t looking for anything serious but he would very much like to see the inside of my flat. He claimed it wasn’t a euphemism but I’ve seen a barely disguised stiffy before. No thanks pal.

Next up was a fellow divorcee. Nice guy, had a great time both times we went out then the third time let him stay over and then discovered he had thought my first name was something completely different to what it is, and I just thought, if you can’t even be arsed to learn my name, you can do one as well mate!

Then was the guy who smoked a joint on our first (and only) date on a Saturday afternoon in a beer garden. Of a family pub. See ya!

Then the penultimate guy was someone I knew from years ago and used to have a crush on. I was so looking forward to the date, as he was the guy EVERYONE fancied back in the day. Well, I don’t know what happened in the 15 years in between but he was not that guy. He lectured me all the way through our food about being a vegetarian and how bad I was for eating meat. I still ate all my chicken like. He was wasting his breath. He also told me he didn’t have a TV as he believes that aliens can spy on us through the aerials so he only has it hooked up to a PlayStation to watch Blu-Rays on. He was writing a conspiracy play and was hoping to take it to LA and become famous. Honestly was expecting him to whip out a tin foil hat at any moment. There were a few awkward silences which he proceeded to fill by asking me more about what I eat in a typical day and criticising me for having jacket potato several times a week. But he lived on veggie pizzas. So, ya know – he knows all about good nutrition clearly. Bell-end. Incidentally, he text me a month later after complete silence and said “how about that second date?” Hahaha as if! Then THREE YEARS later he text me asking for another chance. I didn’t even know who it was! Who does that?

James edit: I remember! I did have ONE bad date. We went back to his after a movie and I went to the bathroom to prepare myself and managed to completely block his toilet. He didn’t have a brush or anything to swoosh it away with so I had to break it up with the bottom of a bottle of Radox. The smell was unbearable and, with the mood killed (at least for me, he was ‘waiting’) I walked right past his bedroom and out of the door into the night. To be fair, I had a lucky escape, as I heard from another acquaintance that he was very much a one-spurt-Burt.

It’s not all bad though. I was just about to delete my profile forever when a guy I had approached replied to me apologising for the delayed response but he had been working away and hadn’t had access to the Internet. I had messaged him as a long shot as he was a fair bit younger than me and had not expected him to reply. We chatted a bit, exchanged numbers and then after a couple of weeks of texting while he was working away again we eventually managed to squeeze in a last minute date one Sunday afternoon. I was so unprepared, I had been visiting my mam in hospital and it was a boiling hot day and you know hospitals are the hottest places on Earth at the best of times, so I was a right sweaty mess but I went anyway. The rest is history, as they say. We now have a beautiful 2 year old daughter and live together. So, he was kinda worth wading through all that shit for. And he still fancies me even though I am fat. So, yay!


Aaah, I do love a happy ending, and seemingly the fragrant Helen likes dishing them out. Speaking of happy finishes, you’ll feel happy when you finish this dish. Sorry, that was a dreadful segue, but see it’s been a long day. This recipe serves four if you dish it up with rice. You can just as easy use pork chunks for this, but we used a joint from Musclefood. Because, you know, it’s us, and we love Musclefood! Plus it’s £6 per 1kg and had hardly any fat! Click here for that. I’m synning this at 1.5 syns – it’s actually 1.25 syns but I can’t bear any cross words.

spicy korean pork

to make spicy korean pork you will need

for the meat

500g boneless pork shoulder, all visible fat removed

for the marinade: 

  • 1 pear, grated (up to you if you syn it – 2 syns per 100g if cooked apparently, but that’s a load of bollocks)
  • 1 small onion, grated
  • ½ tsp fresh ginger, minced (remember, save yourself so much bother by grating it using one of these and putting the rest of the ginger back in the freezer
  • 1 garlic clove, minced (yep)
  • 1 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tsp of red chilli flakes
  • 1 tsp sesame oil (2 syns)
  • 3 tbsp thai massaman curry paste (3 syns) (before you ask: you buy it from Tesco and it’s a paste of shallots, onion, garlic, spices, sugar, lime leaves and various other funny things

for everything else:

  • 1 onion, sliced
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 2 spring onions, sliced

for the lady who loves: 

  • Cadbury’s Milk Tray

for he’s a:

  • jolly good fellow

fore:

  • skin

OK that’s enough. Grow up, tsk.

to make spicy korean pork you should:

  • cut the pork into slices of about 1.5cm thick – you don’t need to be careful or exact, you’re not performing a circumcision on a moving train, just get it roughly the same
  • in a large bowl, combine and mix together all of the marinade ingredients
  • add the pork and mix well, and leave to marinade for at least 30 minutes or as long as you dare
  • heat a large heavy bottomed pan over a high heat and add a little oil (syn if you want, or use Fillipo Berio spray for 7 sprays at 0.5 syn each), then just chill your own heavy bottom whilst it heats up
  • add the minced garlic and sliced onion and stir fry for a few minutes, until the onion turns translucent
  • add the pork and cook for about 6-7 minutes, stirring frequently until cooked through and caramelised
  • serve, and sprinkle with the spring onions
  • easy – we served ours with rice

This dish takes no time to make, but the longer you leave the meat to marinate the better.

If you want more takeaway style dishes or pork treats, click the buttons below!

porksmall fakeawayssmall

Cheers!

J

chilli and cheesy fries pizza

I know, chilli and cheesy fries pizza. I’m about two steps away from my recipes being ‘tip everything in the fridge into a Nutribullet, blend, drink’. Even then I’d get someone with lips like a balloon-knot furiously messaging me to tell me that a blend of bacon, the cat’s ear medicine and seven bags of forgotten/ignored kale has syns because Margaret Mags says so in that little book of dreams. But see we had a tub of leftover chilli from the time we made slow-cooked pulled pork chilli and we haven’t done a pizza for a long while. Aside from the Dominos we had the other night, but listen, Paul had come on or something and needed something to comfort eat. It’s either that or have Lil-lets tumbling around in my bathroom. This is the type of tea you need at the end of an emotional or busy day – something stodgy, admittedly not full of speed food, but something that feels naughty and has the added bonus of invariably smearing all down whatever shirt you’re wearing. I’m not even joking, it’s gotten to the stage where we almost undress one another before a meal so we don’t wreck another shirt. It creates an odd image for a curious neighbour, who might glance through our kitchen window from afar and think two shaved bison are mincing about taking pictures of fucking risotto. Meh, let them drool I say.

Anyway, it’s exactly the type of food I could do with today – I had two ‘OH SHIT’ moments at my work. You know that awful feeling when you’ve cocked something up and your heart sinks and your bumhole starts unpicking the seams of your trousers? That clamminess of the brow and the shooting pains down your left arm? That’s happened twice today. First time I was looking at a deadline for an important piece of work and worked out that I’d missed the filing deadline by three days. I’ve only been in my current role for three months but surely that’s long enough to be packed out of the door with a flea in my ear? I took myself to the gents toilet down a few floors, took a few deep breaths to compose myself (and learn this readers – never, ever go to a busy shitter to take a deep breath – it’s a pretty safe bet that I’ve got advanced mesothelioma as a result) and work out my apology. Ashen-faced, I made my way back to my desk only to realise that it’s June, not fucking July, and that I have a whole five weeks to crack on with things. Phew. I nervously laughed and carried on with my day, with my heart-rate only taking three hours to return back to it’s normal thwomp-thwomp-stutter-seize-thwomp pattern. Thank Christ I’m defibrillator trained, though I reckon they’d frown upon self-use. Plus the smell of my burning chest hair would condemn the building.

Oh, and the second time? I thought I’d missed out on a cupcake. Christ, I almost booked a meeting room out for a good cry.

Anyway come on, let’s get cracking.

chilli and cheesy fries pizza

This makes enough for one wrap – just double up. Credit for the original idea for the recipe goes to realfoodbydad, we’ve tweaked it to make it SW friendly!

to make chilli and cheesy fries pizza you will need:

  • 6 tbsp leftover chilli, spaghetti bolognese, pulled pork or whatever you’ve got
  • 1 BFree Multigrain Wrap (HeB) or whichever other wrap you find that is a) your HEB and b) doesn’t taste like a verruca sock (if you don’t want to use your HEB, this wrap is only 4.5 syns)
  • 50g reduced fat grated mozarella (HeA) (again, swap out this for any cheese you like, or syn some, hey, I’m not fussy – if you don’t want to use your HEA, 50g of mozzarella is 6.5 syns)
  • two good handfuls of Slimming World chips (an Actifry is your best bet for this job – buy one and never look back!) (and yes, you can use leftovers – leftover chips haha, like any of us have trouble breathing unassisted at night because we leave leftovers)
  • 2 tbsp of sliced jalapenos
  • 1 spring onion, sliced

to make chilli and cheesy fries pizza you should:

  • preheat the oven to 240 degrees
  • spread over your base sauce over the wrap, leaving  gap of about 1cm around the edge
  • spread the chips out over the wrap, as evenly spaced as you can manage whilst you’re cramming them into your mouth
  • sprinkle over the cheese and top with the jalapenos and spring onion
  • bake in the oven for about 5 minutes, or until the cheese has melted

Easy, really. Now of course we’ve made some wonderful pizzas before, you see…

 

Really, what’s not to love? For more fakeaway recipe ideas, click on the link below!

fakeawayssmall

J

slow cooked pulled pork chilli boats

To be honest, I know the slow cooked pulled pork chilli boats look crap, but do you know what? I don’t care! We saw them on Pinterest (I know, it’s a miracle I saw anything between all the JuicePlus ads and knock-off Etsy bumph, but hey) and thought we’d give them a go. Lesson learned? Don’t try and copy anything from Pinterest. It never works for us. What looks cute, unusual and fluffy on Pinterest usually ends up looking like the end result of a family car backing over a cat. 🙁

It’s the same with this blog, to be fair. We do try and make our food look presentable but you have to remember, we spend a lot of time fannying about with the dishes this way and that way to try and get them to look half decent. That’s because we want to promote our food. You, on the other hand, shouldn’t fuss about – get down to the business of turning your hard work into poo, instead. It’s what you want.

Anyway, I wanted to give a quick guide to how we blog. This isn’t a funny post but it’s something that we get asked a lot about. I’ve seen a lot of people over the last couple of years start up food blogs and most of them stop after a while, and there’s a bloody good reason – it takes a lot of time! If you want to share your recipes then go for it. You can host on WordPress for free and it’s an excellent platform for your own blog – very easy to use! We take all of our photos with our iPad and touch them up slightly in Photoshop (normally to balance the colours – we have a very, very red kitchen). It’s worth taking the time to write properly but don’t stress too much about telling a story – there’s far, far too many blogs out there (possibly including my own) that, for example, when writing about a chilli will tell you about the time they went to the market to buy chillis, and how amazing chillis are, and how much they love chillis…if you’ve got a story, tell it, but if you’re just filling out the word count, don’t!

We do spend a lot of our time doing this – finding recipes to adapt to make them Slimming World friendly, writing out the posts, taking the pictures, researching the syn count, publicising the posts – each post takes about two hours to do, I reckon. If you’re committed, it’s a fun, worthwhile hobby, but jeez, when I think about all them hours…

If you’re looking to make money from a blog, unless you really, REALLY build up the readership, you’ll struggle. There’s plenty of ways to do it, but you’ll not make much to begin with unless you have a blog full of adverts and trick people into going there. That’s not good. Readership takes a while to build – we get on average about 25,000 views a day but for the first year we were hitting 500 and being glad of it. I remember how excited I was when we got up to 50 subscribers – now we’re not a kick of the arse off 10,000! That’s just insane to me.

If I could give only one bit of advice – do it with love. Now I know that’s going to make everyone’s teeth turn black from all the sugar but honestly, Paul loves cooking and I love writing so a food blog is the perfect outlet for that. If you’re the same, give it a go! If you don’t fancy writing full-time, don’t forget you can guest write for our blog if you want to see your name up in lights. Just drop us a line in the comments and we’ll contact you.

OK, with that out of the way, let’s get to the bloody pulled pork chilli boats.

slow cooked pulled pork chilli boats

to make slow cooked pulled pork chilli boats, you’ll need:

  • a good joint of pork, we used shoulder from Musclefood – it came with very little fat on (and we just cut it off) and an excellent price at £6.00 per kg – click here for that!
  • tin of tomatoes
  • tin of beans
  • tin of black eyed beans
  • an onion
  • a small carton of passata
  • 1 tbsp chilli powder
  • a slow cooker
  • Old El Paso Stand and Stuff tacos (4.5 syns each)
  • one slice of Edam (the sliced Edam from Tesco – one slice is a HEA, or just use your syns for about 4 syns)
  • potato wedges for the side
  • chopped lettuce

to make slow cooked pulled pork chilli boats, you should:

  • put everything bar the taco, cheese and lettuce into the slow cooker and cook overnight on low – then shred the pork with two forks
  • stuff into a taco
  • make a cheese sail
  • put it on a bed of lettuce
  • serve with potato wedges and a feeling of what-the-fuck-am-I-doing-with-my-life

Meh! It made Paul laugh. The leftovers can be served with rice the next day and put into a sandwich. Hell, you could even put it on a pizza like this old recipe of ours. This chilli really is the bare bones – add as many vegetables like peppers or mushrooms as you want. Really, it was just an excuse to muck about with our food. Enjoy!

For other pork recipes, click the icon below!

porksmall

Goodbye!

curried mango pork chops with orange glazed rainbow chard

It doesn’t get any fancier than curried mango pork chops with orange glazed rainbow chard, even if the photo does look like I’ve smeared some houmous on a built-up shoe and sat it beside something the cat’s brought up. Meh, it tastes nice, and it all comes out the same colour so who really cares about presentation? We’ll get to the recipe after this short moan about Forever Living.

STRONG WARNING: if you’re a seller of Juice Plus or Forever Living, let’s just assume that you’re the exception to prove the rule rather than someone who is guilty of the below. No need to get uppity, I know there’s some good in all scams. Even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

We all know how I feel about Juice Plus. It’s worthless powder pressed into pills and shakes designed to be sold to vulnerable folk by desperate pushers who care not about the health risks but more about lining their pockets. The company actively encourages reps to post via Facebook slimming groups and pretend that they tell people off for it when they don’t. Meh. I’ve talked about them plenty of times and frankly, if you’re a Juice Plus seller, I think you’re a parasite. 

No, Forever Living entered my orbit recently (lots of things tend to do this – when you’re the size of a horse-box you tend to have your own slight gravitational pull) because I, out of nosiness, responded to a post on a Slimming World group from someone who said ‘they desperately needed help‘. Actually, it was more like ‘CAN ANI1 HELP PLZ I DESPRATLY KNEED HELP PLZ MESSURJ ME‘. Sorry, no, forgive me, it was more like ‘CAN ANI1 HELP PLZ I DESPRATLY KNEED HELP PLZ MESSURJ ME ⊙﹏⊙ ❤?☹?♥☹? ♥❤ xXxXxXx‘. That kind of shit typing that makes you feel like you’re being inadvertently groomed by Dark Justice. Anyway, being a kind soul and/or nosy, I messaged to find out if she was OK, only for her to launch into her sales pitch about Forever Living and how wonderful the products were and she just needed people to try the products and they could solve eczema and depression and MS and aches and pains and first world melancholy and the Times Cryptic Crossword blindfolded. I responded that it was a load of horse shit and she promptly blocked me. I was annoyed simply because she’d made out like she was in trouble or needed support and it was just a ploy to get caring folk to message her so she could exploit them to pay off her Brighthouse sofa. Or rather, pay off her leader’s Brighthouse sofa. Which you just know will be 90% highly-flammable Taiwanese foam and have built-in speakers. The worst part is that I know some poor sap will end up buying her products, losing their money and feeling blue. Nice one!

Anyway, I let that lie, but seemingly because I’d mentioned the words Forever Living on Facebook, the sponsored ads threw up an intriguing proposition that I should get in contact with a ‘Global Home Business Manager’, accompanied by the kind of graphic someone disinterested in Media Studies might put together in MS Paint in order to stop failing a class. The kind of poster you see in church halls advertising beetle drives and jumble sales. The type of advert that gets filed under ‘God bless them, they’re trying’. It was the ‘Global Home Business Manager’ bit that made me intrigued – not because I want to work from home, but it’s such a clash of words that it really struck me. Many things do at 7.30am in the morning over my bran flakes. What is a Global Home Business Manager?  To me it sounds like the kind of absolute nonsense title that people who sit in front of Jeremy Kyle recruiting other people to exploit help live the dream give themselves to justify their existence, but no, turns out it’s the title given to the next tier up in the Forever Living pyramid, presumably because Chief Shill isn’t quite positive enough. A quick look at the profile for this ‘Global Home Business Manager’ reveals all the usual tricks – the rent-a-quote images about ‘BEING MY OWN BOSS’ and ‘YOU CAN DO IT TOO’, all the positive reinforcement messages lifted verbatim from 1000 other Forever Living profiles.

There’s no doubt you can do well from it, absolutely no doubt. Problem is, you have to turn into one of those annoying folk who piss off their friends, families and neighbours with constant and endless pushing of your tat. How come if it is such a great product it can’t be bought in shops but rather needs to be peddled via a network of recruits on facebook? People describe themselves as business owners but that’s a complete misnomer – you’re a modern day Avon lady, only you’re an Avon lady who rings the doorbell every ten minutes and shouts through the letterbox about the benefit of smearing aloe vera on your ‘gina to clear up your cystitis. You’ll sharp notice that people stop answering the door too, the more you pester them. I left a comment on this sponsored advert asking why there is never any mention of the folks who buy into the whole Forever Living scam and then lose all their money, or about the dubious marketing, or the fact that it’s a giant fucking racket. I didn’t swear, but the comments were deleted immediately and I got a snooty, patronising private message from someone with a dreadful haircut advising me that ‘they felt sorry for me for not being able to see the benefits of such a fantastic product’. You can imagine how grief-stricken I was by such a retort, but typical that the negative comments get deleted. People looking for the champagne lifestyle – which such a tiny amount of sellers will achieve, and even then it’s only with the ill-gotten gains of those below them – are likely to be suckered in. It’s a mess.

I think what gets me most of all, though, is the fact they prey upon the desperate. Officially, they’re told they’re not allowed to say that these products help with illnesses, but I know from personal experience – many, many times over – that the reps say whatever they can in order to gain a sale. I’m lucky that aside from being outrageously handsome and ever so slightly overweight, there’s nowt much wrong with me. I play along, though – I make out I’ve got disease XYZ just to see if they ever back down and say no, this product isn’t for you. They never do. It’s always ‘oooh yes, this can help with your illness’ as though they have the cure to all known disease in a box in their bedroom as opposed to a few sachets of knock-off tat. They don’t give a flying fuck whether these crappy, untested products make a disease worse or the pain that you might go through, they care about one thing only: your money in their pockets. Well, a tiny bit of your money in their pockets and the rest in their leader’s pockets. They are arseholes of the highest order.

Listen, as you can imagine, the Internet does a much better job of explaining this. Take a look at this article on cracked.com or this (god-forbid) recount of an ex-rep on the Daily Mail (I know I know).  Have a gander on Mumsnet for some honest opinion of what people think of the sellers or take a read of the many, many discussion threads out there on it. If you’ve got someone with white teeth and whistling ears trying to sell you a magic potion or worse still, trying to recruit you, ask yourself three questions:

  • why can’t I buy these wonderful products in a shop or why aren’t they prescribed by a doctor;
  • what has this person got to gain by promoting such a ‘wonderful’ lifestyle; and
  • who do I trust more – science, the NHS, doctors and medical studies – or the badly-typed words of someone with a BTEC in Travel and Tourism and debts to pay off?

Exactly.

Right, let’s get to the recipe, eh? This dish is very easy to make – pretty much a bit of blending, a bit of smearing and a bit of grilling. The side of rainbow chard is an excellent way to get your speed food in and can be used as an accompaniment to any other dish.

curried mango pork chops with orange glazed rainbow chard

to make curried mango pork chops with orange glazed rainbow chard you will need:

for the chard…

  • a big bunch of rainbow chard cut up into small chunks (or use spinach)
  • a big fat onion sliced thinly
  • a clove of garlic, minced, using one of these
  • one orange

to make curried mango pork chops with orange glazed rainbow chard you should:

  • preheat the oven to 200 degrees
  • make a dry rub by mixing together in a small bowl 2 tsp of paprika, 1 tsp curry powder, salt and pepper
  • in a small pan, mix together the mango, ½ tsp curry powder, ½ tsp paprika and stir frequently over a low heat
  • rub a good amount of the dry rub mix onto each pork chop, on both sides
  •  heat an oven-safe pan over a medium-high heat with a little frylight and add the pork chops
  • sear for about 1-2 minutes on each side
  • add a tbsp of the mango mixture onto each pork chop and spread evenly, reserving the rest
  • place the pan in the oven and cook for about ten minutes
  • keep stirring the mango mixture until it has thickened slightly
  • when the pork is cooked, serve with the remaining mango puree on the side

to make the rainbow chard

  • cook off the onion and garlic until golden with a few squirts of oil
  • lower the heat and add the chard, put a lid on the pan and allow to steam gently
  • once reduced, squeeze the juice of half an orange in the pan and allow to bubble gently

I’m not synning the orange juice. We’re talking half an orange between four. If you want to syn it, it’s such a fractional tiny amount that it can be your job to work it out!

Serve!

J

slow cooker: sticky fruity pulled pork burger

Have to be quick tonight, as we’re going out to a drive-in to watch Inside Out. I’m not going to lie, it’ll be unusual for Paul and I to be parked by the seafront at night without a lorry driver poking his knob through the passenger side window, but we’ll give it a go. I’m kidding, we don’t do that. We found a deal for said drive-in on LivingSocial and thought, well why not. We wanted to see Grease but apparently the good people in South Shields beat us to it, which is surprising as I genuinely didn’t think you could drive a car with webbed fingers.

My facebook woes continue – I’ve just been deleted from the Newcastle ‘Pick Up My Tat’ (swapping) page for pointing out that someone’s light-up, flashing, disco headboard is one of the tackiest things I’ve ever seen. Someone with a name that sounds like a company that manufactures t-shirts for a market stall (Demi-Marie?) kicked off, said I had no right ‘dissing her bed’ and blocked me. You can just imagine how devastated I am.

Seriously mind, who orders a bed with a flashing headboard? Humans do two things in bed – sleep and shag. Neither of those activities are helped by a bed that looks like the world’s shittest nightclub. Either you’re going to be kept awake by a bed that resembles the back of a lorry making a three-point-turn on a country lane or you’re going to be held off your vinegar strokes by a seizure. 

Let’s quickly discuss that John Lewis advert, shall we? This one?

Yeah yeah. I’m sure your facebook walls have been awash with emoticons of crying faces and people posting statuses like ‘OMG!!!Q1 TEURS STREEMING DOWN MY ARSE SO SAD’ and the noise of thousands upon thousands of mooing cattle trying to outdo themselves with sentimental guff and tearful reactions. Well honestly. Have a Mars Bar and man the fuck up. I don’t understand the fuss and frothing over the various John Lewis adverts, truly I don’t, and I’m not just saying that to be wicked-cool. They’re pretty to look at, yes, but so is a rainbow, and that doesn’t mawkishly yank on my heartstrings like a coked up campanologist. This advert, featuring a dirty old bugger sitting on the moon lamenting his bail conditions and spying on a wee lass in her pyjamas…well, it doesn’t scream Christmas, does it? Aside from that bit where Alexis and Alexander sit down in their Farrow & Ball coated dining room for a split-second of sprout-eating before letting their child get back to hurling paper out of the window, it’s about as Christmassy as an Easter egg. And that bloody song – is there a piece of software that takes any decent piece of music and runs it through a filter so it sounds like the dying gasp of a sparrow? Pfft. 

Mind, I’m a massive hypocrite, because I love the Sainsbury’s Christmas advert. I do! But there is a giant cat in it, so you know, I can be excused. I laugh at the sentiment though – I can tell you now that if we had a house fire, some of our neighbours wouldn’t be coming around with plates of food and beaming faces. No, we’d get them traipsing across our lawn moaning that there was ash blowing on their washing and could we please do something about the smoke because poor Colin’s asthmatic and he’s two puffs from running out of Ventolin. 

Anyway, tonight’s recipes makes enough for eight. I know we said we’d try and stay away from pulled pork, but well, we had to do it once, and put into burgers…well, it’s amazing.  Plus, if you have any meat left over, you can cook it down with pasta and tomatoes and make a very quick lunch. So there.

FRUITY BUNS

Come on, admit it. You want to push your face into that and shake it all about. Before anyone asks, the chips are from our perfect roasties recipe, found here.

to make fruity pulled pork burgers, you’ll need:

to make fruity pulled pork burgers, you should:

  • mince your garlic, chop your onion, tip everything bar the coleslaw and bun into a slow cooker and cook for nine hours on low
  • remove the pork, put on a plate and pull apart with two forks
  • tip the sauce into a frying pan and heat it on high to reduce it right down
  • tip in the pork and stir, getting everything nice and sticky and thick
  • serve!

The breadbun is your HEB – if you have two, don’t forget to syn the extra bun.

Any leftover pork can be turned into this:

IMG_2238

Just make a sauce of tomatoes, chopped artichoke, onion and garlic and add the meat in. Heat through and serve with pasta! 

DONE.

J

pork and chorizo kebabs

EMERGENCY RECIPE ACTIVATE (Paul and I are gallivanting!). This is super quick to make and a good way to use up pork mince – pork is a slightly drier mince so works well with the oily chorizo but beef could be used too. 

pork and chorizo burgers

to make pork and chorizo kebabs, you’ll need:

  • 500g lean pork mince
  • 75g chorizo, chopped (7.5 syns)
  • 5 cloves of garlic, chopped finely
  • handful of chopped parsley

This makes enough for six ‘burgers’, which you can chop up and put into a kebab or indeed, have as a burger. I think that’s enough for three people. If you’re finding that there’s too much meat for you to handle and you’ve got a badly-packed kebab, just take a bit out and try again. You’ll get the hang of it and there’ll be thick yoghurt sauce everywhere in no time at all.

to make pork and chorizo kebabs, you should:

  • mix together all of the ingredients and season to taste
  • divide the mixture into six and press into burger shapes
  • heat a large frying pan over a medium-high heat and place the burgers in the pan
  • cook for about 6-7 minutes each side, making sure the burgers are fully cooked
  • serve in a pitta bread (make sure it’s suitable for your HEB) with salad and raita (mix fat free yoghurt with chopped mint and shredded cucumber)

So easy!

J

pork, apple and stilton parcels

Oops. I said one recipe a day didn’t I? Well, look – it was late when we got home yesterday and then I had the pleasure of showing my parents around the newly decorated house, where I had to stop my mother measuring up for new carpets and calling Pickfords to get herself moved in. After they’d gone, it was really all we could do to order a Chinese and watch some shite TV. We’re only humans and it’s been a really, really long week. I do wish I had a job which meant I could work from home on occasion (sadly, someone has to make the photocopier work and make the teas). I know I couldn’t, I’d spend 7 hours watching Youtube, eating everything in the fridge and half-heartedly masturbating. Look it’s what all blokes do when we’re alone. That’s why our emails from home are always so badly typed with the spelli ng al to cock.!

I had to stop typing for a second there because Paul has set our ‘any colour’ lights to flash on and off when the International Space Station goes overhead and I genuinely thought I was having a stroke. God knows why he’s decided we need that to happen. Frankly all I use the lights for is making the whole house glow red when we’re out so the neighbours think we’re running a gloryhole in our hallway. And we’re definitely not doing that – we’ve just had the walls painted and I don’t want it looking like a Jackson Pollock. 

I’m doing some work behind the scenes on the blog at the moment to make each recipe easier to find, so you might notice a few things changing. Don’t be alarmed. One thing I’ve just added are decent share buttons, which you’ll find at the bottom of each recipe. Please – you’ll be doing me a massive favour if you could share a recipe or two that you like. Hell, you can even print them and take them along to class. Admittedly, you’ll need to push out all the badly-photocopied recipes for Scan Bran stir-fry or other such muck, but go on, be a rebel.

Tonight’s recipe is something a bit different – we always try and make ‘cheaper’ recipes for the blog, but on this one you’ll need to spend a little bit of cash and some of your syns. But look: it’s worth it. They’re tasty, look good and served with a couple of speedy sides will be a complete meal. If you get big chops to begin with, you’re laughing. You could swap the prosciutto for bacon and the stilton for feta and drop the syns right down, but what’s the point in living if you can’t feel alive? Please note: if you’re one of those folks clearly starved of oxygen in the womb and you’re planning to leave me a snotty message along the lines of ‘u kneed 2 sin the appul as ewe’ve cuked it‘, please save your fingers. It’s a slice of apple. A SLICE. Generally speaking, unless your apple is covered in toffee or stuck in the mouth of a suckling pig, you’re not going to take much fat on board. Cheers thanks a lot.

pork chops

to make pork, apple and stilton parcels you’ll need:

  •  4 pork chops, all fat removed
  • 1 red apple, sliced
  • 12 slices of prosciutto (6 syns)
  • 100g white stilton, crumbled (16 syns)
  • 4 sprigs of rosemary (use cocktail sticks if you’re not dreadfully middle-class like us and in possession of a herb garden)

to make pork, apple and stilton parcels, you should:

  • preheat the oven to 200°c
  • heat a large frying pan over a medium-high heat – you won’t need to add any oil!
  • season the pork chops with a little salt and pepper and sear in the hot pan – a non-stick pan is best for this bit because you’ll know when each side is ready when it no longer sticks to the bottom of the pan
  • meanwhile, lay out three slices of prosciutto so that they overlap slightly – you’ll need to do this three more times; one for each parcel
  • place the pork chop on top of the prosciutto, add a few slices of apple on top and then crumble over 25g stilton cheese
  • wrap the prosciutto around each pile and secure with the rosemary sprig so it keeps its shape
  • place onto a baking sheet and bake for fifteen minutes – the prosciutto should be nice and crispy and the cheese melted but not oozing out

Serve with a nice simple salad, or if you can be chewed, some fancy potatoes – and that’s on the next recipe. I’m such a cocktease!

J

cuban mojito pork with pineapple salsa

Firstly let me apologise for any spelling errors that may arise during this post – we have finally unpacked our super shiny iMac and I’m not used to the tiny keyboard. I feel it is made for delicate, straw-like fingers to dance over, not having my hairy sausage digits pummel away at it like a sailor applying lip gloss to a £10 hooker. WOW there’s a sentence you didn’t expect.

We bought the Mac because we are pretentious, shallow bastards it is a lot easier to edit the blog photos on, which means you better hurry along and buy a billion copies of my book to pay for the fucker. It wasn’t hard to win Paul round – he has such a love of polished metal and smooth edges that I’m surprised he isn’t dryhumping the Micra on the side. But everything about using a Mac is different from a Windows computer. Even navigating using this tiny mouse is proving a bloody chore, yes it’s fair enough taking away the buttons and relying on me using gestures but so far the only gesture I’ve managed is calling it a dick and scratching my foot with it.

In fact, it almost looks like a sex toy, all slick and polished – but it would be a boring person’s sex toy, something slipped into a pastel handbag and wheeled out between  accountancy seminars at various Days Inn across the country. It would be called something yawnsome like ‘Pleasure Max’ or ‘Orb’. Amateurs. Everyone knows a good sex toy needs to be tapped into the National Grid and come with an instruction manual on DVD, called something like ‘The Ripper’ or ‘Uvula-nudga’. Anyway. One thing I do like is how sharp everything looks – it’s in 5k, which is apparently like HD but even better. Even better than 4k. Great, now when I watch Jeremy Kyle on catch-up I’ll actually be able to see the sheen of smugness that he has in every pore. I just hope the ultra high definition doesn’t turn online pornography (a healthy part of any modern marriage) into a disturbingly accurate affair – god knows bumholes aren’t pretty to look at in soft-focus, let alone splayed in billions of colours and filling the screen like a flattened sea anenome.

The Mac does look good in our new living room, and the good news is that we’re almost finished with decorating. We’ve got someone coming around to hang our artwork on the wall, fix the TV to the wall and various other little odds and sods, someone coming around to fix the alarm and then finally, the house is our own and we don’t have to make small-talk with anyone but the cats every again. Yesterday was a painful case in point – we had a chap around to install new blinds throughout and because I’d responded to his question of ‘How do you like them hung’ with ‘Well’, Paul retired me to the kitchen to research recipes.

What this actually meant was I got to eavesdrop on Paul making small-talk and the good news is that he’s even worse than me at it. Clearly both Paul and the blinds man were hard of hearing because every sentence by one of them was met with a ‘pardon’ from the other, then an ‘EH’, then Paul clearly doing that thing where he hasn’t heard a word of what was said but is too embarrassed to ask him to repeat it. At one point, he answered the question ‘What do you do for a living’ with ‘absolute junkies’ and that killed the conversation dead. Like the good husband that I am, I just spent the two hours laughing into my fist and trying not to fart too loudly.

One thing we’ve learned from all of this decorating is that buying furniture is a bloody chore. We can’t buy stuff in shops because we’re too common for the posh shops and too posh for B&M, so we’re stuck buying things online, which is fine to a point until you order what you think is a cushion and you get a 7ft beanbag delivered. I mean it looks nice enough but work don’t half raise their eyebrows when they have to hoick that into the lift. We’ve bought most of our new stuff from made.com which has been a revelation, but we’ve tried shopping local for all the accessories and bits and bobs. What a waste of time. Since when did it become acceptable to half-arsedly rub a bit of sandpaper over a shitty chest of drawers from IKEA and call it vintage or even worse, distressed. Distressed? I certainly was, I could barely stop the tears. There’s a shop near us absolutely rammed full of the sort of trinkets and sculptures you’d imagine someone who has the word ‘healer’ in their job-title to have littering their house and it is quite genuinely one of the worst places I’ve ever been to. And I’ve been to Southend, remember. (I’m joking, before I get any barely-understandable voicemails left). Who decides that what they really need for their house is a friggin’ incense burner made from a rusty tin and a feeling of malaise? 

My mother, god love her, looks a bit of chintz and tat, saying it makes a home – well, that’s one gene that didn’t make it down the line to me, I can tell you. For a woman of normal, reasonable taste, she refused for all of my teenage life to throw away what I consider to be the ugliest statue I’ve ever seen. It was a grinning monkey dressed as a waiter holding a tray. It looked to all the world like the final thing a demented mind might see before the hands of hell grabbed your ankle. I dreamed of kicking it down the stairs or accidentally setting fire to it (I’m not sure how well stone would burn in a Hotpoint oven but fuck me I longed for the chance to try) but my mother was fair attached to it. A quick look online suggests I can buy one for around £150, which might actually be money well spent if it meant I could fulfil a fantasy. I note you can buy a similar statue in the shape of a rooster – that would certainly be more suited to our house, given how much we’re fans of large cocks in our bedroom, but still.

Mother, if you’re reading this, it really is your only decorating faux-pas.

Tonight’s recipe then. As part of Musclefood’s generous care package, we were given some of their pork loin steaks to try. I struggle with pork, I always think that unless it is done really well, you might as well chew your arm. It’s what I imagine human flesh to taste like. Nevertheless, these steaks looked juicy and plump, just how we liked them. You can buy Musclefood’s pork steaks right here along with all their other marvellous meats. It’ll open in a new tab, don’t worry. I know I might sound like a corporate shill but I promise you, if they tasted like farts and nothingness, I’d tell you. As it is, they’re thick as a sadist’s slipper and juicier than a happy orange. Or something. Actually thinking about it, they’re no more expensive for pork than Tesco, so you’ll be reet. Take a look!

A bit of research was done as to what we can cook with them and Paul came up with a recipe for ‘Cuban Mojito pork’. The only thing I associate with Cuba, because I always revert lazily to stereotypes, is cigars. They’re about the only thing I occasionally miss about smoking. Before I joined my current job, I almost took up a job managing a cigar and pipe shop in Newcastle. How different my life could have been, dispensing cherry tobacco to whiskery old buggers and burning my eyebrows with the cigar lighters. 

Paul and I used to be members of a mail order cigar club that would send out a variety of different cigars every month – I always remember one month they sent a cigar that looked like a bloody roll of carpet – I could barely get it in my mouth, and let me tell you, that’s a problem I almost never have. It took about ten minutes to light the bugger (I had to use the grill function on the oven) and it was enjoyable for approximately sixteen seconds before the emphysema kicked in. There’s something inherently butch about cigars, well, decent cigars – mincing along with a Café Crème  that you’ve lit with a novelty lighter shaped like a phallus doesn’t quite have the same gravitas. 

Oh, if you’re wondering how this is mojito, well, I dunno. It has mint in it. There’s no alcohol in it, so if you’re shaking your way through this blog entry in the hope of getting a fix, have yourself a morning gin and a packet of Polos and get a grip.

cuban mojito pork

to make cuban mojito pork, you’re gonna need:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil (6 syns)
  • 1 tbsp orange zest
  • 150ml of orange juice (we use Tropicano 50/50, which is 1 syn per 100ml) (1.5 syns)
  • 50g coriander leaves  (a good handful)
  • 5g mint leaves  (about 8 big leaves)
  • 8 garlic cloves
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • salt and pepper
  • pack of pork steaks

to make cuban mojito pork, you should:

  • add all of the ingredients (except the pork, salt and pepper) into a food processor and pulse until everything is finely chopped into a nice green paste that you definitely wouldn’t like oozing out of any hole on your body
  • if you don’t have a food processor simply chop the coriander and mint, and grate the garlic and mix together
  • pour the mixture a into a sandwich bag or sealed container, add the pork and mix everything together
  • leave for a few hours, or overnight in the fridge
  • when ready to cook, preheat the oven to 220 degrees
  • remove the pork from the mixture and discard the remaining marinade (you’ll actually lose a few syns this way, hence I’m only putting this down as 1.5 syns each)
  • place the pork onto a rack over a baking tray and add salt and pepper, just a pinch of each mind
  • roast the pork for around twenty minutes until it is lightly browned
  • reduce the heat to 190 degrees and cook for another ten minutes
  • transfer the meat onto a chopping board, cover with foil and let it rest for twenty minutes – don’t worry if it’s black – that’s intentional!
  • serve with plain rice and pineapple salsa.

hang on, pineapple salsa? shit-a-doo, forgot to give you that recipe. OK, you’ll need:

  • a few rings of fresh pineapple (use the rest in a fruit salad)
  • two ripe tomatoes
  • half an onion, chopped
  • handful of coriander leaves
  • one green chilli
  • 1/2tsp of cumin
  • 1/2tsp of salt to taste
  • 1 minced garlic clove

to make pineapple salsa, you’ll need to:

  • chop everything into uniform small cubes
  • mix
  • put in your mouth
  • enjoy
  • turn into poo

Easy!

Fuck me ragged, that was a long entry, was it not? I spoil you.

J

sweet and sour pork meatballs

James is busy trying to be all macho with his dad putting together our new utility room but there’s no manly way to hold a handheld Dyson or use a microfibre cloth. So tonight’s post comes from me (Paul). Sorry about that.

Blimey. What a day. I knew there was something the matter with us when we starting planning our day at IKEA. ON A BASTARD BANK HOLIDAY. IKEA is pure hell at the best of times – one of these places that makes you think you’re going to have a wonderful day bouncing about on sofa cushions and bean bags and being one big giggling family with a hot dog and an ice cream at the end, when the reality is actually you spending one floor staring intensely into the back of someone’s head because they’re walking far too slowly, and the second floor wanting to just die because you’re SICK OF THIS SHIT ALREADY. So, against our better judgement, that’s what we did today.

But with a difference.

After having the Ikea experience on multiple occasions for big projects (like the kitchen) we’ve eventually got this all down to a tee. So, down to the second, we had the whole day planned out that minimised any interaction with slow-walking, gormless members of the public, ordered a new living room set, refunded a dodgy kitchen door (that I accidentally drilled through – eeehwhatamilike) and threw in a breakfast for good measure. Well, you need that energy if you’re going to mutter ‘FUCKING MOVE’ under your breath every ten seconds.

We arrived on the dot, just as the revolving door started to move and slyly minced our way through all the shortcuts to get straight to the restaurant – the most important part of the day. Once James had wiped away his tears after noticing they’d gotten rid of the potato cake (NOOOOOOOOOOOO) we were straight to the BESTÅ stand to fuck around on some crappy little computer bunging cupboards on walls. If you’ve ever fancied having a sob into some KUNTÅ sidetable go ahead and try and plan your living room on their online planner. It’s what I imagine it’d be like to be Stephen Hawking on speed trying to describe the texture of Quark on that little Atari he’s got strapped to his chair. Stressful isn’t the word. You might as well etch your design it into your arm with a compass and present it the warehouse staff.

I’d fantasised about at least ten ways of dispatching multiple rough sorts on the way to the lighting section. I can never understand the mentality of people who think it’s perfectly acceptable to just stop in the middle of an aisle when there’s practically a stampede of guffawing Geordies rampaging towards you (not unlike that scene in the Lion King but with a lot more polyester and teenage pregnancies). I bet those people are also those that pull their trolley across in a supermarket like a barrier. I’m far too polite (cowardly) though to ever say anything. I just stare at them like I’m trying to burn through them with laser-beam eyes. James isn’t quite so composed and will just barge through shouting at people to ‘MOVE!’, like a hairy snow plough. He almost ran someone off the road simply for having the temerity of having a mauve car.

Fortunately though the whole day was a success, despite all the eejits and lack of an ice cream at the end and we got everything sorted. They even managed to refund us the drawer and door that I ballsed up without a receipt. God love ‘em. As a thank you I was sure to press the green smiley face button that measures people’s happiness as many times as I could. I’d like to think it made a difference.

One way we always make our IKEA experience a little more fun is to watch out for any couples that are eyeing up a particular piece of furniture. If either of them makes a muttering that they quite like it we’ll always come up behind them and then start slagging it off. ‘Oh that’s fucking gopping’, or, “Oh lord, I’ve never seen anything as tacky as THAT in my life’. They’ll soon walk off and have a tiff a little further on. Oh we’re such terrors.

But that’s enough yak. In the spirit all things IKEA we’ve managed to bring together a delicious meatball recipe that’ll cure any takeaway pangs you have… here’s our take on Sweet & Sour Pork Meatballs.

IMG_1935

to make our sweet and sour pork meatballs, you’ll need:

for the meatballs:

  • 500g pork mince
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  • ½ salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • half a pineapple, cut into small chunks (0.25cm)

for the sweet and sour sauce:

  • 1 red onion, finely sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic minded
  • ½ large red pepper, sliced
  • ½ green pepper, sliced
  • 3 large tomatoes, roughly chopped
  • half a pineapple, cut into chunks (halve again into two separate portions)
  • 115g tomato puree
  • 1 tbsp cornflour (1 syn)
  • 1 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp honey (5 syns)
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp pepper

and this is how you make it:

  • preheat your oven to 180°c and line a baking sheet with greaseproof paper
  • heat a small saucepan over a medium heat and add a little oil
  • add the minced garlic and spring onions and cook for 4-5 minutes until softened and slightly browned. set aside
  • in a large bowl mix together the mince, carrot, peppers, egg, basil, salt, pepper, Worcestershire sauce, pineapple pieces and the spring onions
  • roll the mixture into even sized balls – squeezing out the liquid if you need to – don’t worry if it seems too wet (fnar), they’ll keep their shape if you squeeze enough liquid out (fnar)
  • place the meatballs onto the baking sheet and spray with a little Frylight
  • cook for about thirty minutes or until golden brown
  • whilst the meatballs are cooking you can make the fruity sauce
  • heat a large frying pan over a medium heat and add a little oil
  • add the sliced red onion and garlic and stir frequently until the onion is slightly caramelised
  • add the peppers one of the pineapple portions and cook for a few minutes until softened
  • add the tomatoes, salt and pepper and keep cooking, stirring frequently
  • using a sieve, crush down the other half of the pineapple chunks portion into a jug to get the juice
  • add the cornflour to the pineapple juice and stir until dissolved
  • add the tomato paste, honey, cider vinegar, lemon juice and 120ml water to the jug and mix well
  • pour this mixture into the frying pan, bring to a boil and simmer for about ten minutes until the mixture thickens
  • serve the meatballs and pour the sauce over the top

Please don’t be put off by the long ingredient list – you’ll probably have a lot of it already in your cupboards and if not, go get some! It’ll all be dead cheap and useful to you for future recipes. Also, don’t be put off by the syn values – yes, this uses honey and cornflour but divided by four this only comes in at 1.5 syns, which is nothing compared to a takeaway. And, it’ll finally give you a reason to use that pineapple you keep buying and leaving to rot on your windowsill…

Technically, because you’re squeezing the juice out of a quarter of a pineapple you could syn it if you’re anal about such things. We didn’t because we take a more common sense approach to tweaking. You can if you wish – I reckon it’d be about half a syn’s worth (if that).

Smaklig måltid!

bacon wrapped tenderloin with a balsamic and strawberry dressing

Just a quick post tonight as we’re busy sorting out Cubs Towers ahead of the Summer of Works. Exciting.

We had a glut of strawberries to use up, I wanted a salad, Paul wanted a roast dinner, so this was the happy compromise. You might wrinkle your nose at the thought of using strawberry but it pairs nicely with pork – think plum sauce with duck and you’ve got the right idea. We served it with roast potatoes which were PERFECT. In fact, let’s cover off how we did our roasties.

roast potatoes

you’ll be needing

  • enough potatoes to fill that echoing belly of yours, cut up into decent chunks
  • Frylight or oil – just a drop or two
  • a lamb Oxo cube
  • an Actifry (if you don’t have one, don’t shit the bed, you can do it in the oven and I’ll cover that in a second

then…

  • squirt the chopped potato with a spritz of spray or a drop of oil
  • chuck in the actifry
  • cook for twenty minutes
  • crumble a lamb Oxo cube on there and splash a good tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce on them
  • cook for another twenty minutes or until they look just right
  • serve!

The Actifry is possibly the best thing we’ve bought since joining Slimming World – not least because it does make genuinely proper tasty chips. You can get others like it but they’re not quite as good (the Airfryer, for example). It’s expensive, but we fry off our meatballs, sausages, chips and potatoes in it with little to no oil. If you’re on the fence about one, take it from us that you won’t regret the expense. You can buy it on Amazon by clicking here. Why not treat yourself?

Too tight for an actifry? Don’t worry. Just put them in the oven for 20 minutes, take them out, shake them, splash them and crumble that cube on the top, and cook again. The key is letting them sit for a few minutes before they cook for the second time.

I’ve seen a lot of people gobble on about those Oxo potatoes where you cook them half submerged in stock…well yes, but then you end up getting potatoes that look like athletes foot, all soft and crinkled and mushy. If that works for you, champion, but I’m not quite at the stage in my life where I need to gum my food. Try the above! 

Anyway, the main event:

sliced pork tenderloin wrapped in bacon

you’ll be needing this (this serves 4):

  • pork tenderloin – with fat removed, ours was around 1kg
  • eight slices of bacon with fat removed (if only it was that easy!)
  • 300g of strawberries, nicely ripe, sliced
  • 125ml of balsamic vinegar
  • three cloves of garlic
  • bag of rocket

and then, once you’ve finished being all hysterical, do this:

  • wrap the tenderloin in bacon – use cocktail sticks to secure if you want
  • put it into the oven on 200 degrees for 30 minutes, then take it out and turn it over and cook for another thirty minutes
  • meanwhile, finely chop (remember: buy a mini chopper, easier, and no stinkin’ fingers) the garlic and pop in a pan over a medium high heat with a drop of oil or a squirt of Frylight
  • cook for around two minutes until slightly golden
  • add the balsamic vinegar and half of the strawberries
  • bring to a boil and then allow to simmer for ten minutes – your kitchen will smell lovely at this point
  • once the second half of the pork is done, take it out, baste it with a few tablespoons of the balsamic strawberries and whack it under the grill for about two minutes to colour it
  • throw the other half of the sliced strawberries into the balsamic pan just so you get a nice difference in texture 
  • remove the pork, cut into thick slices, serve on the rocket with a drizzle of the balsamic and strawberry sauce
  • enjoy, you posh bastard.

Here, I was GOING to call it a reduction, because I suppose it is, but that’s just too wank, even for me!

ENJOY.

J