Mrs Bailey’s Greek Sandwich Pork
Any language is a tricksy thing, and English more tricksy than most, being spoken so widely across two separate worlds. Even while she’s teaching her girls to make this, Mrs Bailey has been heard to say “Of course, we don’t generally serve it in a sandwich…”
Still: “sandwich pork” is the name by which it was introduced to her, and sandwich pork it has remained; and of course she learned it from a Greek girl, so that’s the kind of sandwich pork it is, for all that it is almost never seen between two slices of bread. Rolled up in a Mexican tortilla, to be sure, but of course that’s not a sandwich; or packed into the hollow of a pita bread, most certainly, but again, not a proper British sandwich. Mrs Bailey is actually very fond of this with her sesame-seed buns — but, y’know. That’s a filled bun, not a sandwich.
Whatever you call it, though, the method goes like this:
Zest and juice of two lemons
1 tomato, chopped
1 onion, peeled and chopped
Half a head of garlic, peeled
1 tablespoon sel gris or other crunchy salt
1 tablespoon black pepper
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
Several sprigs of fresh oregano or marjoram, or else a tablespoon of dried oregano
2 pounds of pork shoulder, sliced half an inch thick
Another onion, peeled and cut into sixths and separated
To make the marinade, put the zest and juice, a couple of glugs of olive oil, the tomato, the onion, the garlic and the spices in a food processor or blender, and blitz until smooth. Lay the herb sprigs or dried herbs in a bowl, and pour the marinade over.
Add the pork slices and the wedged onion, work the marinade well into the meat, cover and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 450F, with a heavy baking tray or large skillet on the top shelf. For ease of cleaning, you may wrap the tray in foil.
When everything’s up to temperature, take out the tray — carefully! — and add a glug of olive oil, then fish the pork and the onion slices out of the marinade and lay them on the tray. Hopefully, they should sizzle immediately.
Put the tray back in the oven and bake for half an hour, maybe forty minutes, pausing halfway through to drain any liquid back into the remaining marinade (which you may freeze and save for another occasion).
When the pork is beginning to blacken around the edges, take out the tray. Chop the pork up smallishly, and serve with the bread of your choice — or rice! or fried potatoes! or potatoes baked with tomatoes and herbs! — and your choice of additives: raw onion and green onion and fresh sliced tomatoes and pickled gherkins and yoghurt and sour cream and red pepper (roasted or fresh or both) and…
You can find many more of Mrs Bailey’s recipes here: