Pork with Samphire, Cockles & Parsley Vinaigrette

Here’s one for all you A&G readers who have easy access to organic local pork. Whether your Gloucestershire Old Spots are snuffling around in a corner of your smallholding, or your village butcher has some good quality loin on his slab, this roast pork with samphire, cockles and parsley vinaigrette recipe by Rose Prince is a really delectable dish.

Having a rather traditional family, once they had all looked in vain for the Sunday lunch Yorkshires, apple sauce and steamed vegetables, they decided to give it a go. It was a hit. Mind you, I did serve strips of moreish crackling with it. I didn’t bother with frying the lemons, or the strained cider and cockle juice because it looked a rather unattractive grey colour. However, the parsley vinaigrette really lifts this pork with samphire dish into something special and was a joy.

Pork with Samphire, Cockles & Parsley Vinaigrette

Recipe by Rose Prince, tried and tasted by GraceCourse: Main Meals, RecipesDifficulty: Not tricky


Total time





As Rose Prince says: “The subtle flavour of pork goes well with the salty, marine flavour of the anchovy in the vinaigrette and the cockles (you can also use live clams). The rind is removed, but you can roast it separately to make pork scratchings for another occasion.”


  • 1.5-2kg boned and rolled loin of pork, rind removed to leave about 3mm fat on the loin

  • 1 tsp fennel seeds

  • For the parsley vinaigrette:

  • 8 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

  • Large handful of flat-leaf parsley, chopped

  • 10 chives, chopped

  • 3 anchovies, chopped

  • 1 tsp capers, chopped

  • For the cockles:

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • 2 small shallots, chopped

  • 150ml traditional cider

  • 1kg live cockles, rinsed for several minutes under a cold tap

  • 300g trimmed samphire

  • To serve 2 lemons, halved and fried cut-side down in an oiled frying pan until coloured


  • Preheat the oven to 180C/gas mark 4.
  • Season the pork with salt, pepper and fennel seeds. Place it in a roasting pan and cook for 1¼-1½ hours – the juices inside the meat should run clear when it is pierced with a fork. Be careful not to overcook it – loin meat can become dry. Once cooked, wrap the pork in foil and set it aside.
  • Mix together all the vinaigrette ingredients, season and set aside.
  • Just before cooking the cockles, slice the pork and place the slices on a warmed serving platter. Cover and keep warm.
  • Put the oil and shallots in a large pan with a well-fitting lid. Heat until the shallots are sizzling, then add the cider. When it bubbles, add the cockles and put on the lid. Cook until they are all open wide (discard any that stay closed).
  • Quickly blanch the samphire and drain. Lift out the cockles with a slotted spoon and scatter them around the pork with the samphire.
  • Zigzag over the parsley vinaigrette, then place the fried lemon halves on the dish. Strain the cider and cockle juice through a fine sieve and serve in a jug on the table (definitely optional – see my comment above).

If you’d like to try another pork recipe that seems an unusual combination of ingredients but ends up tasting super delish, have a look at this recipe