Cooking the Caribbean – Jerk Pork

Jerk Pork

It’s simple but expensive to buy pre-made jerk sauce, or jerk seasoning, in the supermarket. For this reason I thought it best to try making some, and it’s delicious. In fact, as one might expect, you get an awful lot more flavour if you make it yourself. However, this recipe isn’t for the soft-tongued, it packs a punch – a problem which can be avoided, at cost of tradition – I suppose – by adding less chilli. I loved this meal, but my girlfriend wasn’t quite sure – because of the heat issue. But don’t let that put you off!

Before I made this I didn’t realise allspice was actually a berry all of its own – the Pimenta berry. Indeed, do not confuse it with mixed spice, whatever you do! However, if you don’t have any, and wish to make the recipe even cheaper – because allspice is rather expensive – one can emulate the taste of allspice by mixing, in equal proportion, nutmeg, cinnamon and cloves. I’m not sure what the taste is like in comparison, because I haven’t tried this, but I assume it must be fairly similar.

Also, don’t you love the way the rice turns purple if you cook it with the black beans? I think it gives the dish added visual impact, which was something utterly accidental. It’s far more eye-catching than it would have been with plain ol’ white rice. To do this just follow the instructions about how to prepare the beans on the back of the packet, assuming you are using the dried variety, adding the rice roughly 15 minutes before the beans are cooked.

Jamaican Jerk Pork with Black-Bean Rice {recipe}

Serves 2

Ingredients:

• 2 good sized steaks of pork

• 2 tsp ground allspice

• ¼ tsp nutmeg

• ½ tsp cinnamon

• 3 cloves of garlic, mashed

• 2 tsp chilli flakes, alter to taste

• Small bunch of fresh or dry thyme, finely chopped

• 2 tbsp oil, any sort

• 2 tsp muscovado sugar

• Salt and pepper, to taste

• 140g rice

• As many or as few black beans as you like, I suggest not going overboard

Method:

1. Mix together the allspice, nutmeg, cinnamon, garlic, chilli, thyme, oil and sugar in a bowl.

2. Marinate the pork in the spice mixture for as long as possible, overnight would be nice but not essential.

3. Begin to prepare the beans and rice as per the above instructions.

4. Grill the marinated pork for around 4-5 minutes on either side, or until cooked. Don’t overcook it or it’ll become dry. Serve the pork on a bed of the rice and beans.

Cost: This should come to roughly £1.40-£1.50 per portion, much like the last pork dish. If you wish to be really frugal the above mix could probably stretch to four portions. Also, I’ve yet to try, but this would be simply amazing on a barbeque.

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5 comments on “Cooking the Caribbean – Jerk Pork

  1. Corina
    June 13, 2011 at 9:23 pm

    Great marinade. It looks really tasty.

  2. Stacey
    December 18, 2011 at 5:18 pm

    I love that you made your own jerk! I grew up in the Caribbean, and my Dad still lives there, so I just get him to bring back a bunch of pre-made jerk whenever he comes for a visit. Definitely good on the BBQ though, and GREAT on chicken wings.

    • frugalfeeding
      January 1, 2012 at 1:51 pm

      Oh I had to! It would be against the rules if I didn’t! I may re-do this recipe actually.

  3. narf77
    November 22, 2012 at 7:58 pm

    Another great tofu coverer…to be honest, I don’t actually mind the bland flavour and texture of tofu but try to steer clear of it most of the time. This jerk spicing and sauce would make it a most interesting dish indeed with some dirty rice. Cheers for your last years post 😉 (and cheers for reminding me to check the date)

    • frugalfeeding
      November 24, 2012 at 9:47 pm

      OH yes, definitely! You just have to force it to imbibe a lot of flavour :D.

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