Pork and Apple Surprise

This is like a particularly good and succulent meat loaf. It has the bonus of a moist surprise filling of apples and melted goat’s cheese.

Ingredients

  • 450 g/1 lb Cox’s apples
  • 25 g/1 oz butter
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 900 g/2 lb minced pork
  • 1 large clove garlic
  • 1 medium onion
  • about 1 dessertspoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 large egg, lightly whisked
  • 75 g/3 oz goat’s cheese
  • olive oil for brushing
  • 4 tablespoons apple juice
  • 150 ml/¼ pint double cream
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • salt
  • black pepper

Method

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4. Peel and core the apples, then chop them into 1.25 cm/½ in pieces. Melt the butter in a large frying pan over a medium heat, add the apples and stir with a wooden spoon for 2-3 minutes. Stir in the cinnamon, remove from the heat and turn the mixture into a bowl. Put the minced pork into another bowl. Peel the garlic and onion, chop both finely and add to the pork, together with the rosemary. Season well, then add the egg and stir thoroughly.

Cut the goat’s cheese into 1.25-2.5cm/½-1 in pieces, mix it gently with the apples and season with a little salt and plenty of pepper. Using your hands, form the pork mixture into a large ball and put it in a lightly oiled roasting pan. Cut off the top of the ball and then, as if you were a potter, hollow out the meat with your hands and bring up the sides to form a bowl shape. Spoon the apple and cheese mixture into the cavity. Then replace the meat top and pat all over to give a roughly round shape. Brush with olive oil and cook in the centre of the oven for 1½ hours.

Remove the pork ball from the roasting pan and put it on a warmed serving plate. Add the apple juice to the juices in the roasting pan and bubble for a minute, then stir in the cream and bubble for another minute, until slightly thickened. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice, then season to taste. Cut the loaf into thick slices from the centre like a cake and serve with the sauce.

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