Delicious braised pork cheeks bourguignon with creamy polenta

To serve 4 people

For the braised cheeks

12 pig’s cheeks

50g butter

25ml vegetable oil

200g diced onion

100g carrot diced

50g diced leek

50g diced celery

3 cloves garlic

750ml red wine

3 bay leaves

10 black pepper corns

1 rosemary sprig

500ml chicken stock

For the polenta

200g polenta

1lt chicken stock

100g butter

5g salt

1g fresh milled black pepper

For the garnish

100g button mushrooms

100g smoked streaky bacon

50g baby button onions

Fresh parsley

What to do:

What to do

To braise the Cheeks

1. First pan fry the cheeks in a little oil until they have a good colour all round

2. In a separate large sauce pan sauté the onions and the vegetables in the oil & butter until beginning to colour.

3. Add in the wine and bring to a simmer.

4. Add in the rest of the ingredients and the cheeks.

5. Place in a pre heated oven at 140°c without a lid for 1 hour.

6. Stir and reduce the temperature to 130°c for a further 2 hours. Stir each hour.Allow to rest for half an hour before removing the cooked pig’s cheeks.

7. Pass the sauce through a fine sieve, discard the herbs and vegetables.

8. Reduce the sauce to 300ml, taste and adjust the seasoning.

The polenta

1. In a heavy based sauce pan.

2. Stir the polenta into the warm stock and gently bring towards a simmer.

3. It will thicken a lot and needs constant stirring. Be careful as it may spit.

4. Depending on how fine or coarsely milled your polenta is will determine how much stock you need.

5. Stir in the butter and test the seasoning at the end.

6. You should aim for a consistency of very creamy mash potato that will hold a shape on the plate but give a little when you serve the cheeks on top.

To finish the dish

1. Quarter the button mushrooms, cut the bacon into ½cm chunks & peel the button onions.

2. Pan fry the onions in a little oil until beginning to colour before adding in the bacon and then the mushrooms, season with salt & black pepper. When cooked add in a knob of butter and some chopped parsley.

3. Serve a good spoon of the polenta in the middle of each plate. Sit the pork cheeks on top with the sauce poured over. Garnish with the bacon,
mushroom & onion. Bon appétit!