Monday, 8 November 2010

Star Anise

A few days ago my dad happened to mention he and my mum were having pork with star anise for supper and I have been craving it ever since. Billo would make it for us every so often when we were younger and it is a very good dish to make with left over pork roast.

I don't use star anise very often but it goes really well with pork and duck and is widely used in Chinese and Indian cookery. It is also a good spice to add to poached pears or mulled cider but only use very little in sweet dishes; too much and it will give it a savory flavour (I had meringue with star anise cream for dessert at a restaurant in Camden at the weekend and found it tasted very like a duck pancake; not good!) Here is my version using fresh pork loin:

4 Pork loin steaks, sliced
1 tbsp honey
1/2 cup light soy
1/2 cup water
1 clove of garlic
3 Star anise
1 tsp mixed spice

Mix the pork with the above ingredients and set aside for a few minutes. Heat a pan with a little oil and brown the pork. Transfer the pork to an oven proof dish. Add the marinade juices, 2 glasses of cider and 1 cap of cider vinegar to the pan. Heat through and pour over the pork. Fry some strips of red pepper and quartered mushrooms in the same pan and layer over the pork. Cover with tinfoil or a lid and bake in the oven for 30 minutes. 5 minutes before serving scatter over some sliced green beans and cook for the last 5 minutes with the lid off. If you like a thicker sauce mix 2 tsp of ground arrowroot powder with some cold water and stir into the juices; the sauce should thicken almost immediately.
Serve on rice with a sprinkle of fresh spring onions. I also like to eat this with some creme fraiche or sour cream on the side.


  1. Dear Rose,

    Can I replace the rice for Risotto rice or is that sacrilegious?

  2. Dear Ross,

    I'm not sure the Italians would agree but in your kitchen Ross, you can serve it with whatever you fancy! Italo-Chinese fusion cooking; advanced stuff! Enjoy! x

  3. Cooked, and 6 happily smiling recipients with the addition of blue cheese sauce instead of creme fraiche. HMMM, Thankyou! x

  4. HMM, Blue cheese! I might have to try that! x