Pork, Parsnip and Apple Casserole

I got some pork out of the freezer one morning this week, and probably spent the entire day at work (ooops) daydreaming about what to do with it.  I don’t often buy or cook with pork, so nothing sprung to mind.  All I knew was that I wanted to cook a meal including loads of vegetables that I could store up for future work lunches.  I am so busy at the moment and am not having nearly anywhere as near as much time as I would like to cook up different food each day, so cooking in bulk like this really helps me to eat healthily when I’m short of  time or at work.  I just add more steamed veg to accompany the portions of the casserole which I stack up in the freezer.

I found an apple and pork stew that I liked the sound of, and also a pork and squash casserole.  Well sadly my supermarket didn’t have any squash that day, so I went for parsnips instead.  I totally love parsnips.  In fact growing up my Mum would always include these with our roast Sunday lunches because I loved them so much, much more than potatoes – and even better that my siblings didn’t like them, all the more for me :).   This recipe is a combination of the 2 recipes, and very lightly spiced.  It doesn’t taste like a curry, but the curry powder gives it a lovely warming flavour which along with the cinnamon and apple is very seasonal and smells amazing.   I have to say it tasted even better the following day for my lunch.

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • Olive oil
  • 500g Pork Loins, fat removed (organic if possible), diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1/2 onion diced
  • 4 leeks, thinly sliced
  • 4 parsnips, peeled and diced (approx 250g)
  • 4 carrots, peeled and diced
  • 1 apple (I used Braeburn), diced
  • Herbs and Spices:  1 tablespoon curry powder, 1/2 tablespoon cinnamon, 1 tablespoon coriander leaf, 1 tablespoon parsley
  • 500mls vegetable stock (made from low-salt gluten free vegetable stock cube)
  • 1 teaspoon arrowroot starch
  • Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C.
  • Heat the oil in a large saucepan and add the diced pork.  Cook for 5 minutes until browned and remove.
  • Add more oil to the pan if necessary, and sauté the onion, garlic and leeks.  Adding the parsnip and carrot and apple a while later.  Cook off for 5 minutes, then add all the spices, and stir whilst the flavours release.
  • Add the stock to the pan, bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes.
  • Mix the arrowroot with a little cold water to form a paste – then add this to the pan and stir.
  • Season the stew, cover with a lid or tin foil and transfer the pan to the warm oven – for 35 minutes, or until the root vegetables are tender.
  • Serve with fresh green steamed vegetables (I went for broccoli and seasonal Brussels sprouts drizzled in flax oil and lemon juice).

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