Cooking Time: ~60 Minutes
The following only serves as a guide. Actual figures will vary depending on specific ingredients used.
We’re talking seriously hot here. Set your oven to 230ºC/450F and leave it there.
Make sure you get cutlets with a lovely layer of fat and clean skin. If it’s practical and affordable, always buy grass-fed meats, or at least not grain fed! Here’s a side view of the Pork I was working with.
The key to this cooking correctly, and getting a killer crackling, is to score it properly. With a sharp knife (and you’re going to need sharp) cut into skin and down into the fat, but not the flesh, every half inch or so.
Douse the pork with oil, be it Olive Oil, Coconut Oil, or even get outrageous and use Bacon Grease, rubbing the cut thoroughly, being sure to get down into the scores made earlier. Then salt it, salt it like you’re never going to taste salt again. Salt it all over, into the scores, on the sides, and even the bottom.
Then salt it some more, just to be on the safe side.
Place the pork on a baking tray in the oven, on the top shelf, not checking on it for 25 minutes. By which time the skin should be a delightful golden color and coming into its own as a grand crackling. If that’s how it looks, turn the oven down to 190ºC/375F.
Important: all ovens are different. If at the 25 minutes mark you find the skin isn’t as described above, shut the door and let it carry on at that temperature through till the end, though check intermittently to make sure it isn’t burning.
I love broccoli and cauliflower, which is why I chose them. That, and they’re a good source of fiber and potassium, something Keto eaters don’t get enough of and may even need to supplement. I’ll always recommend them, but you should feel free to mix it up and go with whatever you want.
Bok Choy, Spinach, Choy Sam, and Asparagus would all complement the meal in their own way. In hindsight, I wish I had have picked up some Brussels Sprouts and roasted them with the Pork.
This pot was full, entirely full, of those vegetables. They’ll take the least time of everything to cook. How long that is depends on your preference between firm vegetables and mush.
Here’s the fun part, the cheese sauce. It’s extremely simple to execute, and telling a person of romantically interest “Hey, who needs tasteless bechamel when you’ve got it homemade” will surely win some points. Unless they’re French. This cheese sauce is an adaptation of one I’ve used earlier in my Mousakka, except this one is cheesier.
No cheese sauce has ever looked pretty before being done. Melt 250g Butter in a pot on low, and once it’s entirely liquid, put the 125g parmesan cheese in there with it. Turn up to simmer, and stir continuously for a solid five minutes. Parmesan won’t melt all the way down like other cheese, but doing it this way will get it as close as possible.
Soon enough it will look somewhat creamy, or at least it’ll be thick. If your pork is not ready by this time, turn the heat off and allow it to rest.
The Pork takes about an hour to cook and will leave a lovely crackling for you and your guests to enjoy. If the skin looks great, it’s probably done, but I recommend checking by poking it with a skewer. The juices should flow a light pink, but that’s it, no darker.
If you’re not convinced then cut it open, I did, as I wanted to be sure. Once you’re happy that it’s cooked, allow it to rest for 10 minutes.
With your Pork cutlets resting, and your vegetables cooked just right, it’s time to finish off the cheese sauce. Apply a medium heat to the pot and allow it to commence simmering, at which time you must add cream, all 300mL in one hit. Stir gently for five minutes and dust nutmeg in, allowing it to ever so slightly darken the color. When done, allow it to rest.
Plate up the cutlets and vegetables, and pour the cheese sauce over the top of the vegetables, stirring it pretty wildly before pouring. This is because the parmesan doesn’t melt entirely, and the heavier parts will sink to the bottom.
If you’re looking for what to eat on Keto that’s fast, easy, and extremely hard to get wrong, this is for you. So anyone who is looking to start Keto but isn’t confident in the kitchen, this is where to begin. As mentioned earlier, if you don’t like Pork, Lamb makes a fantastic substitute.