Sunday, 6 September 2015

Meaty secret from Spain: Secreto de Iberico with pineapple salsa and Villa Maria Cellar Selection Riesling

Whoah. WHOAH. Have I got a secret for you. With an "o". Yep, secret-o. Secreto de Iberico, to be precise. Sounds immediately so enticing, right? That's Spanish for you. You'll get away with just  about anything in it. Just imagine whispering "tengo la sífilis y voy a morir mañana" - the listener would just melt. That is, if they didn't understand Spanish and know you've just told them you have syphilis that will kill you tomorrow, of course. But hey, I can promise this is probably just about the most succulent piece of meat you'll come across. 

Secreto comes from somewhere around the shoulder region, lurking under the belly fat. Juicy and tender beyond belief. It's heavy on the muscular fat (visible on the surface of the slab of meat, creamy and white) which keeps the meat moist, yet giving it a glorious crust.

In case you don't have a bunch of Iberico piggies roaming at the back of your hacienda, source yours frozen or at a good butcher.

Prepping this baby takes no special skills. Heavy on the salt and pepper, off to the hot BBQ or a griddle pan it goes for about 3 minutes per side, followed by a couple of minutes rest. It's next to impossible to mess it up.

In Spain the traditional way to serve it is to cut it into strips and drizzle with freshly squeezed lemon juice. Another equally delish way would be to serve it with romesco (or romesco mayo!). Ooh, and with some roasties!

This time I served mine with pineapple salsa, which, too, comes together in mere minutes. No need to wrap up the BBQ season just yet!

Serves 2

Grilled Iberico's secreto with pineapple salsa

1 slab (about 370 g) Iberico pork's secreto
salt, pepper

Pineapple salsa:

1 small red onion, finely chopped
1 large garlic clove, finely chopped
1 tlsp fresh ginger, finely chopped
the juice of 1,5 lime
1/2 pineapple (or 2 cans of pineapple slices in its own juice)
1/2 green pepper
1 - 1,5 jalapeño (depending on your taste), finely chopped
1 tomato
1/2 bunch of coriander
1/4 - 1/2 tsp salt (to taste)
pinch of white pepper

Take the meat into room temperature about half an hour prior to grilling. In the meanwhle make the salsa. 

Combine garlic, red onion, ginger and lime juice in a bowl and leave to marianate (this helps soften the onion). Then prep rest of the ingredients.

Cut pinapple, pepper and tomato into 1 cm cubes. Combine with jalapeño and chopped coriander leaves. Combine with the onion mixture. Check the taste and season. 

Wipe the meat dry and season generously. Grill over hot grill (or griddle pan) for 3 minutes per side and leave to rest for a couple of minutes before serving.

Cut to strips, drizzle with remaining lime juice and serve with pineapple salsa.

Spicy, sweet notes? Richness of the pork? You guessed it - the wine pairing is Riesling. What you might have not guessed it is the fact that this time it comes from New World.

Another wine I've introduced from the same producer is Private Bin Organic Sauvignon Blanc I paired with the Asian-inspired sesame encrusted tuna salad. 

Villa Maria Cellar Selection Riesling is a dry wine with fruitiness so typical for Riesling without excessive sweetness, however. It has floral notes and, after breathing a bit, also hints of petroliness. Dry as an aperitif or with Asian inspired dishes with fish, seafood and white meat.




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