This Pulled Pork and Bean Soup makes a hearty and nutritious dinner!
Soup has got to be something really special for me.
I’m not one of those people who can make a simple, smooth soup and be satisfied with it.
I need my soup to have substance. Veggies, meat, cheese, potato skin croutons, pasta – yes soup needs to be filling!
I wanted to get this slightly spicy pulled pork soup to you quick – before the weather starts getting too warm for soup (says the girl who makes beef casserole in Summer).
Cumin, paprika, chilli powder, tomatoes, garlic all cooked long and slow with melt-in-the-mouth pork….
Admittedly, it sounds like a fair amount of effort for soup, but it’s SO worth it. Besides, it makes a big batch, so you can freeze it to keep you going for a couple of weeks!
So, the kids are off for Easter.
Two weeks of juggling work, whilst making sure I spend plenty of time with two of my most favourite people in the world (yes you’re on that list too Chris – if you’re reading this :-)).
We spent the day working around each other in the kitchen today. Me making multi-coloured spaghetti (yes, not even joking) and baking croquettes, Gracey & Lewis making their own stop-motion-animation on the kitchen table.
I was so impressed with their creativity – involving Num Noms characters (who i’ve been working with recently), pirates and sea creatures. At one point, filming moved upstairs whilst they filled up the bath with water and plastic animals. I think my wooden spoon was re-purposed as a plank of their boat.
I also spotted a scene involving a canon and swords. They wrapped up filming before dinner, and intend to run through their script to add in the audio tomorrow.
I’m sure I just used to sit and play with barbie dolls or colouring books at their age. Technology certainly has moved on!
Let’s get back to the soup! Here’s the recipe – I first made this for Superfood Magazine.
- For the pulled pork:
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1.85kg (4 pounds) rolled pork shoulder, fat and skin kept on
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¼ tsp pepper
- 2 carrots, washed and chopped in half (no need to peel)
- 1 onion, cut in half (no need to remove the skin)
- 1 stick of celery, broken in half
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped in half (no need to peel)
- 2 ½ litres (approx 2 quarts) chicken or vegetable stock (use water plus bouillon powder for gluten free)
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 yellow pepper, deseeded and chopped
- 3 tbsp tomato puree
- ½ tsp chilli powder
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 2 x 400g (14oz) tins of chopped tomatoes in juice
- 1 tbsp honey
- 1 x 400g (14oz) tin pinto beans, drained and rinsed
- 1 x 400g (14oz) tin cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
- 100g (3½ oz) kale (tough stalks removed), washed and sliced
- Start with the pulled pork. Preheat the oven to 150°C/300°F. Heat the oil in a large oven-proof pan on a high heat. Season the pork with the salt and pepper and place the pork in the pan. Brown on all sides (this should take about 15 minutes altogether).
- Add the carrots, onion, celery, garlic and stock. Bring to the boil, then turn off the heat and place a lid on the pan. Transfer to the oven and cook for 3 ½ - 4 hours, checking 2 or 3 times during cooking. Top up with boiling water if the liquid level reduces by more than a half.
- Once the pork has cooked, leave to cool. Drain the liquid, reserving the stock (discard the vegetables). Allow the stock to cool, then refrigerate. Once chilled, the fat will form a solid layer at the top. You can discard this layer of fat, or use for another dish.
- Place the pork on a chopping board. Remove and discard the skin. Shred the meat using two forks, removing any excess fat that may be remaining.
- Now make the soup. Heat the oil in a large pan. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes on a medium heat until softened. Add the yellow pepper, tomato puree, chilli powder, paprika and cumin. Heat through for 3 minutes, stirring to coat the vegetables. Add the tinned tomatoes, honey and the reserved pork stock. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 15 minutes.
- Add in the pinto beans, cannellini beans and the pulled pork. Heat on high for 6-7 minutes until heated through. Stir in the kale and cook for a further minute until wilted, then serve.