Bavarian Beer Roasted Pork with Sweet Potatoes and Parsnip

by eat in my kitchen

Roast Pork with Beer and Mustard Seeds

This is the ultimate roast – Bavarian beer roasted pork, also known as Bayerischer Schweinebraten or Krustenbraten. When I visited the Deyerling siblings last week for a meet in your kitchen feature, they reminded me of this traditional roast. You can’t really ask for more, tender, juicy meat and crunchy crackling on top, perfectly roasted and crispy. This is hearty, honest autumn food, for those cold nights after a long walk out in the countryside. That’s exactly what we did!

A few days ago we decided to leave the city for a few hours to visit one of Berlin’s beautiful lakes that you can reach after a short train ride. The Müggelsee lake is my beloved escape whenever I need a break from the buzz. It’s a huge lake, peaceful and quiet surrounded by thick forest. Autumn is just starting to show, so the leaves were still quite green but I could smell the change of the seasons. We have a little tradition, we always stroll down the town’s high street before we go to the lake. We visit the local bakery and butcher, for some cake and bread, sausages and to look for some inspiration. Both of them are traditional businesses, and I have to say that I look forward to checking their daily offer just as much as to walking at the lake. This time we made our choice as soon as we got into the butcher’s shop. A nice big piece of pork caught our attention and reminded us of the wonderful Bavarian beer roasted pork we cook in winter. The butcher put it aside for us along with a few other delicacies while we continued our walk. On our way back to the train station we picked up our bags and couldn’t wait to get started with our oven roast!

There are various ways to roast pork to achieve the perfect crackling. My mother cooks it skin side down first in a little bit of broth before she turns it around. As much as we love to share recipes, here we disagree. I cook mine skin side up without turning the meat. I rub lots of salt and crushed cloves into the scored rind and cook the meat in its own juices for 1 1/2 hours. At this point I add the beer and vegetables, cinnamon, star anise and mustard seeds. I chose sweet potato, onion and parsnip to roast in the strong juices until it’s all golden and crisp on the outside and soft inside. I like to season the gravy with some Dijon mustard and fruity jelly, like elderflower or peach, but you could could also use honey or maple syrup.

I can’t really say how I prefer this dish, fresh and warm out of the oven with a pint of beer and some potato dumplings on the side or the next day, sliced thinly with some chutney in a sandwich!

Roast Pork with Beer and Mustard Seeds

 Bavarian Beer Roasted Pork with Sweet Potatoes and Parsnip

For this recipe, you need a good sized piece of pork shoulder, smaller pieces tend to dry out, it can be boned or on the bone. I have made this recipe with both. The rind has to be scored in a pattern (as you can see in the pictures). You can ask your butcher to do this or cut the pattern yourself with a sharp knife, just mind that you don’t cut into the meat!

If you want to make potato dumplings on the side, the famous Knödel, you can use my Gnocchi dough. You just have to shape walnut sized balls out of the dough and fill each of them with 3 small cubes of white bread. Cook them in lots of salted water for about 10 minutes on medium-low temperature until the dumplings swim on the surface.

For 4-6 people you need

pork, shoulder piece, boned, scored, 1500g / 3.5 pounds
(if you use a piece of pork with the bone leave it in the oven for 1 – 1 1/2h after you poured over the beer)
cloves, ground in a mortar, 10
salt
beer 500ml / 1 pint
medium sized onions, quartered, 3
sweet potatoes, scrubbed, cut into cubes, 2
parsnips, scrubbed, cut into cubes, 3
cinnamon stick, broken into 3 pieces, 1
star anise 3 single pieces
mustard seeds 2 heaped tablespoons

For the gravy
broth 175ml / 0.5 pints
elderflower (or any other fruity) jelly 1 tablespoon plus more to taste
Dijon mustard 1/2 teaspoon plus more to taste
pepper

Set the oven to 175°C / 350°F (I use the Rotitherm setting).

Mix the cloves with 2 heaped teaspoons of salt and rub into the scored rind, depending on the meat’s surface you might need more salt. Put the meat on a deep tray skin side up and cook for 1 1/2 hours.

Take the tray out, pour the beer over the meat and arrange the spices and vegetables on the sides (don’t add the jelly and Dijon mustard yet). Cook for another 30-45 minutes until the crackling is crisp. Take out the vegetables and meat and mix the gravy on the tray with the broth, jelly and mustard and season with salt and pepper to taste. Take out the cinnamon stick and star anise and pour into a gravy boat (you can cook it down in a sauce pan for a few minutes if you prefer a more concentrated taste). Serve with the meat and vegetables.

If the rind isn’t crisp enough yet, turn on the grill for a few minutes after you’ve removed the vegetables, gravy and spices and cook the meat until the crackling is light and crispy!

Roast Pork with Beer and Mustard Seeds

 

Roast Pork with Beer and Mustard Seeds

 

Roast Pork with Beer and Mustard Seeds

 

Roast Pork with Beer and Mustard Seeds