“This recipe has been around for years, and while it’s a fiddle to make, it’s well worth the effort – so go on, spoil your loved ones over Christmas!”
Serves 4 – 6
1.8 kg (4 lb) lean loin of pork, skinned, boned and rolled (about 1.4 kg (3 lb) weight after preparation)
salt and freshly ground black pepper
45 ml (3 tbsp) gin
150 ml (5 fl oz) unsweetened grape juice
150 ml (5 fl oz) dry white wine
25 g (1 oz) butter
30 ml (2 tbls) flour
for the marinade
8 juniper berries, crushed
2 cloves, crushed
1 garlic clove, crushed
45 ml (3 tbsp) olive oil
90 ml (6 tbls) dry white wine
for the garnish
30 ml (2 tbsp) butter
450 g (1 lb) seedless grapes
1. Place the pork in a deep dish. Combine the marinade ingredients and pour over the meat. Cover and leave to marinate at the bottom of the refrigerator for 24 hours, turning several times.
2. Heat the oven to 190°C (375°F) gas 5. Drain the pork, reserving the marinade. Place the joint in a roasting tin and sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Pour 150 ml (5 fl oz) cold water around the meat. Cover tightly and roast for about 1 3/4 hours, basting occasionally, until the juices run clear when the pork is pierced with a skewer.
3. Ten minutes before the end of roasting time, prepare the garnish. Melt the butter in a large, heavy-based frying-pan, add the grapes and saute for 4-5 minutes until golden brown. Reserve.
4. Transfer the cooked pork to a heated, deep flameproof serving dish. Pour the gin into a heated metal ladle, set alight and quickly pour all over the meat.
5. Skim the fat from juices left in the roasting tin. Pour back into the tin any juices that have collected around the pork on the serving dish. Cover the pork and keep hot.
6. Add the grape juice, white wine and reserved marinade to the juices in the roasting tin. Bring to the boil, scraping the base and sides of the tin with a wooden spoon to loosen any crusty morsels. Reduce the heat and leave the sauce to simmer for 2-3 minutes.
7. Meanwhile, make a beurre manie by working together the butter and flour to a smooth paste.
8. Strain the sauce over the sauteed grapes in the frying-pan. Set over a low heat and stir in the beurre manie, a little at a time. Continue stirring until the sauce comes to the boil, then simmer for 3-4 minutes longer to cook the flour. Season and spoon into a heated sauce-boat. Serve with the pork, which should be very hot.