Pork steaks with rosemary

You’ll think I’m obsessed with this book and you would be right. If anything happened to it, I would buy another one, or get this one sorted at a book binders. The recipe is from Nigel Slater’s book, The Kitchen Diaries. I got the pork steaks from Long Island Larder, locally raised produce. They do produce boxes, croft visits, and will be opening a shop next year. 

Don’t get caught out (as I often do) – this involves marinading the pork steaks for at least an hour before cooking. 


  • 2 pork steaks
  • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 6 peppercorns
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • juice of half a lemon


  • Strip the leaves from the rosemary sprigs, and put them in a large pestle with the salt, pepper and roughly chopped garlic. I used seasalt to help with pounding and grinding this to a rough paste.  Add the olive oil one spoonful at a time, keep grinding, and then add the lemon juice. 
  • Rub the marinade onto the pork steaks and put them in a lidded plastic box or plastic bag in the fridge for at least an hour. 
  • Preheat the grill to around 200C. Grill the steaks for around 7 to 8 minutes each side. You may need less if the steaks are thinly cut, more if they are really chunky. Once the fat is beginning to crisp up, and the steaks look done, remove from the grill, cover and let them sit for a few minutes before serving. 

We served these with baked potatoes and beetroot. The potatoes soaked up the meat juices and flavours from the marinade. Delicious. 

Beetroot and vinegar

I have managed to grow some beetroot this year, not always my best crop, and last year was better. I served this with pork chops the other evening, delicious. Another Nigel Slater recipe, I am a huge fan, and you should buy all his books, the recipes are full of passion for ingredients.


  • Six small to medium beetroot, about the size of a lime, with the leaves on. 
  • A teaspoonful of balsamic vinegar (you could use any vinegar)
  • A tiny pinch of salt


  • Clean the beetroot and remove the leaves, but do not peel. 
  • Simmer in boiling water for around 20 minutes, or put into a small roasting tin in a hot oven with a little water, and cover with foil, and cook for an hour. 
  • When cooked and cool enough to handle, trim and remove the skin, which should be easy. Cut into segments, and add the vinegar and salt.
  •  Pick out the best leaves, rinse them, and roughly chop, including the stems. Treat these like chard. I cooked them in a small frying pan with butter and a little water until cooked, just a couple of minutes. 
  • Serve the beetroot on a bed of leaves. The book suggests eating with buttered bread and a hard crumbly goat’s cheese. We had them with pork chops. 

Fennel in vermouth

I made this delicious side dish with the last of the fennel that I grew this year. It had started to bolt, but the stems were still very tender. I sliced the bulbs thinly and chucked anything that was a little tough. 


  • 2 bulbs of fennel, sliced
  • 60g butter
  • 60ml dry white vermouth (Martini, Noilly Pratt, etcetera)
  • A tiny pinch of salt


  • Melt the butter in a small pan, and add the sliced fennel. Cook over a low flame until the fennel is softening.
  • After about five minutes, add the vermouth, cover with the lid and leave to cook very slowly for another twenty minutes. Check occasionally to make sure that the mixture is not burning. The mixture should be just about caramelised at the end of cooking.