Saddle of Pork

Fragrantly flavoured with thyme and lemon juice and stuffed with prunes, Saddle of Pork makes a magnificent dish to serve at a dinner party. Serve with steamed broccoli or cauliflower and roast potatoes.

1 X 6 lb. lean saddle of pork

2 teaspoons salt

1 teaspoon black pepper

2 tablespoons dried thyme juice of

1 lemon

12 prunes, stoned

4 fl. oz. chicken stock

1 ½ tablespoons cornflour

Preheat the oven to moderate 350°F (Gas Mark 4, 180°C).

Place the meat, fat side uppermost, on a carving board and rub it all over with the salt and pepper. Using a sharp knife, make 6 incisions, crosswise, along the saddle. Sprinkle the thyme and lemon juice into the incisions. Gently push 2 prunes through each incision until they will remain firmly inside.

Place the saddle, fat side uppermost, on a rack in a deep roasting tin. Place the tin in the oven and roast for 30 minutes. Reduce the temperature to very cool 275°F (Gas Mark 1, 140°C). Cover the meat with aluminium foil and continue roasting for a further 2 to 2 hours or until the meat is tender and the juices run out clear when the meat is pierced with the point of a sharp knife.

Remove the roasting tin from the oven, and remove and discard the foil. Transfer the meat to a carving board. Using a sharp knife, carve it into thick slices. Keep the meat warm while you make the sauce.

Remove the rack from the roasting tin and skim off and discard any fat on the surface of the cooking juices.

Strain the juices into a small saucepan and add the stock. Set the pan over high heat and bring to the boil. Dissolve the cornflour in 3 tablespoons of the liquid. Using a wooden spoon, stir this mixture into the liquid in the pan. Stirring constantly, cook the sauce for 3 minutes or until it is fairly thick and smooth.

Remove the pan from the heat and pour the sauce into a warmed sauceboat. Serve immediately, with the meat.

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