Maggie Beers Roast Pork Loin and Apple Sauce and Roast Potatos


I really like watching Maggie Beer cook, however, I rarely make any of her recipes. I think because they often involve verjuice or some ‘other harder than usual to find ingredient’, that I would have to make a special trip to purchase.

I love that she showcases local and seasonal produce.


But when I saw this one on the latest season of Masterchef, I had to give it a go. It was a real ‘Sunday lunch’ or special ‘Family dinner’ recipe.

I didn’t have verjuice, so I used apple cider vinegar in the apple sauce and left it out pouring it over the pork. I also didn’t make the cavolo nero, but served it with some steamed zucchini

I won’t re-write the recipe here, here is the link to the Masterchef recipe.

This was not a complete success, as I didn’t have time to let the pork ‘dry’ overnight, I left it for about five hours, and the pork was already scored, but not at the 1cm intervals suggested. So, only part of my pork skin turned into beautiful crackling :(.


The use of apples and grapes was wonderful with the pork, and as always with Maggie’s recipes, it really uses the best of season produce. This is a good apple sauce recipe, using a beurre noisette really deepens the flavors.


I will include my recipe for crispy roast potatoes here.


Serves 4.

6 medium Kestrel Potatoes (or any good roasting potatoes)


salt and pepper

I clove of garlic minced

1 tbs of melted butter

1 tbs of olive oil.

1.  Preheat oven to 180c. Halve the potatoes. Add the potatoes to cold salted water in a large saucepan. Heat on high, bring to the boil and boil for about 10 minutes. You  want the potatoes to be partially cooked, but not falling apart. Drain and allow to steam dry in a colander.

2. Meanwhile, mix the remaining ingredients in bowl.

3. When cool enough to handle, use a knife to cut diagonal lines in the top of the potatoes, repeat in the opposite direction to create a cross hatch pattern. Do not cut all the way through.


4. Place potatoes, on a lines baking tray. Using a basting brush, paint the potatoes with the butter mixture.


5. Cook in oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until golden and crispy.

Give her method of getting the perfect crackling a go,  and let me know how it turns out.



Caramelised onion jam


This is a very versatile condiment. I made here to add to a bacon and egg pie that I will post in a few days, but it will make any burger, steak, tart, hot dog, sandwich or meaty dish extra special.

Cool it, and mix through some sour cream or cream cheese for a homemade french onion dip.

This is not a a true jam, so it does not have a long self life. If you put it in a airtight container it should last up to 5 days in the fridge.

I have used and halved the is recipe from, but halved the recipe,


half a tbs of good olive oil

300gs of brown onions

2 sprigs of fresh thyme

1 tbs of dark brown sugar

1 tbs of balsamic vinegar

1. Heat oil in a small saucepan, on low heat.

2. Add the onions and thyme, cook stirring, for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden.


3. Add  the sugar. Cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add  the vinegar and 1/2 cup cold water.

4. Increase heat and bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes or until thick.


Chipotle Mayo!

This is an easy condiment that will make any Mexican style meal extra special (or sandwich, or fries etc.)

Modern and authentic Mexican food is very popular in Australia at the moment, and I notice that this style of  mayonnaise is popping up on menus in things like sliders, tacos and Mexican street corn.

However, Chipotle chillies are not readily available here, and I had to go to a specialty shop to find them see this post .

I’ve based this recipe on this one by Bobby Flay

For those of you who are familiar with the Nandos chain, my brother in law thinks this tastes like their ‘spicy chip dip’. However, is has a smokey kick that is unique.


2-3  whole chipotle chillies in adobo, with 1 tbs of adobo liquid

1 cup of good whole egg mayonnaise (I like best foods)

juice of a lime.

  1. Process chillies and adobo in food processor until smooth.
  2. Add mayonnaise and lime juice and process until combined.
  3. Place in an airtight container and refrierate.


This will last in the refrigerator for a least a few days.





Mexican Pickled Onions – Cebolla en escabeche


These really jazz up your Mexican meal, they are easy and last a while in the fridge and the color is AMAZING!!

They are adapted from this recipe (the pork was also amazing, but I lost the photos I took 😦 ).



6 red onions, thinly sliced

juice of a pink grapefruit

juice of an orange

juice of  a lime

1 tsp of sea salt

  1. Place onions in a  heat proof bowl, cover with boiling water and set aside for 1 -2 minutes.
  2. Drain, and refresh under cold water, return to bowl.
  3. Combine juice and salt, stir to dissolve salt. Add to onions.
  4. Refrigerate for at least an hour, the flavor and color will deepen.

These will keep in the refrigerator for at least a few days.


Using up Kale

I had half a bag of baby kale left over from last night and needed something to do with it. I used some on a tuna sandwich, which was quite nice, but only used up a little.

I remembered seeing ‘kale chips’ on some Paleo sites in the past. So I searched for some recipes and found plenty. Some people gushed that they tasted ‘so much like potato chips’, and that they were a healthy way to satisfy those salty/crunchy cravings.

Well I love potato chips, but I don’t keep them in house or else they will get all eaten….by me and there goes 200 calories. Here is my attempt.

Ingredients for about 2 cups after cooking

half a bag of baby kale (Woolworths carries this, please use other any kale you can find)

about a tablespoon of good olive oil

sea salt flakes (or other salt)

Heat oven to 180c. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Mix kale with oil in a bowl, and lay out in a single layer on tray. Bake for about 10 -15 minutes. Kale should be dry and crunchy, can can take it further until the edges brown if you wish. Place in bowl and mix in sea salt to taste.


Well,  I can’t say they were as goods as potato chips, but they did hit the crunchy/salty spot. They were as nice as other vegetable chips I’ve had. I think they are a good way to get a few more greens into the kids or man child in your life.

Next time I will try some different seasonings.

Have a Great Day!!