Regional Flavours

Chilli poblano tortilla w roasted pork, tamarind & date jam

Recipe by Gary Mehigan from Network Ten's MasterChef Australia

Ready In: Three hours, plus marinating time
Serves: 4


pork belly
1/3 cup
rock salt
1 tsp
fennel seeds, crushed
1 tsp
cumin seeds, crushed
As needed
olive oil
To taste
flaked salt
To taste
black pepper
3 cups
spinach picked
1/2 cup
maize flour masa harinah
1 cup
plain flour
1/2 tsp
baking powder
1/2 tsp
boiling water
1 tbsp
olive oil
fresh limes
1 cup
coriander leaves washed & picked
charred sweet corn, kernels removed from the husk
1/2 cup
finely shredded pickled red cabbage (you will pickle this through this recipe)
radishes sliced thinly, covered in iced water
1 1/2 cups
pitted dates
1/4 tsp
bicarb soda
1 tsp
each – cumin & coriander, toasted and ground
1/2 tsp
ground ginger
1/2 tsp
kashmiri chilli powder
2 tbsp
tamarind paste
1 cup
red cabbage, finely shredded
red wine vinegar
beetroot juice (optional)
castor sugar
1/2 tsp
mustard seeds
1/2 tsp
fennel seeds
tar anise


Place the pork belly skin side up onto plate. Mix the salt and spices and spread over the skin. Pop into the fridge overnight.

To cook, pre-heat the oven to 200C.

Brush the salt of the pork belly and wipe of the excess with a cloth, place the pork skin side up into a heavy based roasting pan, drizzle with a little olive oil and pop into the oven.

After 20 minutes reduce the oven temperature to 145C and continue cooking for 1hr 20mins or until the skin is crisp and pork soft. Remove from the oven and allow to rest for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, to make the tortillas, set a medium sized sieve over a bowl and line the sieve with a clean cloth. Blend the spinach in a canister blender until it’s a smooth paste and pour into the cloth and allow the water to drain away form the spinach puree.

Place the masa harina (maize flour) plain flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Pour in the hot water (but not boiling) add olive oil, and mix with a wooden spoon until it starts to come together. Add 2-3 tablespoons of spinach puree to the dough and knead for 2 minutes or until you have a smooth pliable dough. Wrap in cling film and allow to rest in fridge for at least 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, peel and cut the avocados into quarters. Dice carefully and place in a bowl. Squeeze a little lime juice over the avocado, salt, pepper and a few coriander leaves. Repeat for the charred corn and set both aside.

After the dough has rested, remove from the cling film and divide in half. Roll each piece of dough into a sausage, then cut into 30-40g pieces. Repeat for the other piece of dough and then roll the pieces into balls with your hands.

Cut two squares of baking paper just a little bigger than the diameter of the tortilla press. Open the press and place the first square on the base, place the ball of green tortilla dough on top then place the second square of paper onto of the dough. Close the press over the sealed dough and press firmly into a thin tortilla. Repeat for the remaining balls of dough laying the tortillas carefully onto a board or plate ready to be cooked.

Heat a good non-stick frying pan over a high heat and add a tiny dribble of olive oil. Place 1-3 tortillas in the pan at a time depending on how comfortable you are to be cooking a couple of tortillas at once. Cook for 2 minutes each side. If you wish to add another dimension to your tortillas remove from the pan and place directly over an open gas flame for 30 seconds each side to puff and char slightly like a phulka (this is optional)

As you cook each tortilla, lay the tortillas between a folded tea towel to keep warm and moist.

For the chutney, place the dates into a small pot with the bi card soda and add the 250ml water. Place over a medium heat and bring gently to the boil. Cook gently until the dates are nice and soft and begin to collapse. Drain away the excess water and return the pot to the heat, add the dry spices and tamarind paste.

Place into a canister blender and blend until smooth. Set aside.

For the pickled cabbage, place the pickling ingredients into a small saucepan and bring to the boil, remove from the heat and allow too cool. Pour over the shredded red cabbage and allow too steep for 15 minutes.

Slice the pork into neatly into chunks or thick slices appropriate to the size of the tortilla and set aside in a warm spot.

Place warm tortillas onto a plate place a piece of roasted pork on each, pipe a ball of date & tamarind chutney next to each piece of pork. Spoon a little avocado and corn over the top, pickled red cabbage, a few radish slices and finally the coriander. Serve fold and enjoy.

Map of South Bank - Regional Flavours 2018

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