There I was, bobbing about on Pinterest (as you do) when I came across a pin for roasted cabbage. Right away my tastebuds perked up and I could instantly see how it would work, that lovely earthy cabbage flavor lightly charred and tender? Yes, please!
So, I had the veg, but what about the starch and the protein? I noticed that the photo of the roasted cabbage contained fennel seeds, another favorite of mine. I first encountered fennel seeds in sausages and love the subtly spicy and bitter kick they give foods. Naturally, I decided to go with pork because fennel + pork = nomgasm.
The rest of the dish just seemed to fall into place after that, I'd decided to pan fry the pork with honey and tarragon, vamping up the earthyness of the dish and undercutting the bitterness of the fennel and the char that would be on the cabbage with playful honey. When it came to addressing the starch, I wanted something that I could use to compliment the honey in the dish. The obvious solution seemed sweet potato. Taking my inspiration from candied yams, I blitzed up a sweet potato puree laden with brown sugar, cream and cinnamon.
The groceries you'll need are:
pork loin steaks
2 tbsp honey
1 tbsp tarragon
one head green cabbage
one large sweet potato
1/2 tbsp brown sugar
100 ml double cream
2 tsp cinnamon
pinch of salt
1 tbsp fennel seed
For the pork, sear 1 to 2 minutes each side, using a hot pan. Coat with honey and tarragon and grill until preferred doneness.
For the roasted cabbage, cut a cabbage head into rounds. Place onto a greased cookie sheet, moisten with olive oil, seasoning and fennel seeds. Roast for 30 minutes at 400F.
For the sweet potato puree, dice, boil and mash one large sweet potato. Season and add cinnamon, brown sugar and a pinch of salt. Transfer to blender and add double cream. Blend until desired consistency. Pass through a sieve or muslin to remove any stringy bits.