Pig trotters, which are ideal for soups and stews, can take 2 hours to roast on gas mark 4.
Pig trotters shrink when roasted and tend to curl slightly.
Roast pork takes 1 ½ hours on gas mark 4 ½. The skin should end up golden brown in colour with the meat not being too dry/tough and not too moist either.
On this web page I will show you how to roast a chicken, pig trotters, leg of pork and potatoes whereby you will begin to realise that roasting anything in a gas oven or fan-oven is simply a matter of temperature and time; with the actual roasting process being a case of 'just sticking it in the oven' and turning it over to cook thoroughly.
STEP #1 - Preheat the oven to gas mark 4 ½ or 5. With a medium-sized chicken for example, gas mark 4 ½ will take the chicken 1 ½ to cook whereas gas mark 5 will take that chicken 1 hour to cook.
With roasts, it is best not to rush the cooking process. In general, a slower cooking time tends to produce better results (i.e. a better taste with tender meat) whereas roasting meat too quickly tends to produce a dryer meat. The key to success is experimentation with your particular cut of meat and oven.
STEP #2 - Spread a tablespoon of cooking oil around the inside of your roasting pan (at the bottom only) and then place your meat inside that roasting pan whereby you then slide the bottom of the meat into the cooking oil. This is just to make sure the meat does not stick to the bottom of the roasting pan.
STEP #3 - Season the meat with black pepper, rock salt and mixed herbs (or whatever herbs you like) and then place the roasting pan in the oven.
Season your meat with black pepper, rock salt and mixed herbs
STEP #4 - Cook the meat for 30 minutes (1 third of its cooking time) and then take the roasting pan out of the oven. Now scoop up the natural sweated meat fat and cooking oil from within the roasting pan, with a metal tablespoon, and pour it over the meat a few times. This will add flavour to the meat when you put it back in the oven.
STEP #5 - Put the roasting pan (with meat) back in the oven and cook the meat for a further 30 minutes. After 1 hour of cooking (2 thirds of its cooking time) the meat's skin should be a nice golden-brown colour, perhaps crisp (if a joint of pork for example) with the meat cooked or almost cooked.
STEP #6 - Take the roasting pan (with meat) out of the oven, turn the meat over and then place the roasting pan (with meat) back in the oven for a final 30 minutes.
The pork joint is beautifully cooked after 1 ½ with a crispy skin
After 1 ½ hours of cooking the meat should be cooked thoroughly, with the meat not being too dry or too raw. If the meat is too dry you will know to cook it at a lower temperature next time, perhaps in less time, and if it is too raw you will know to cook it for longer at the same temperature for example. Experiment!
The chicken meat has cooked nicely - no raw pieces and not too dry
When cooking chicken you need to make sure it is cooked thoroughly, without any jellified pieces between the bones/joints. If the meat is still pink and/or jellified in places, after 1 hour for example, you might want to part the legs and wings and cook further. This is one reason why I turn meat over to cook on its underside, especially with chicken.
Chicken drumsticks taste nice when oven roasted or steam-fried in a saucepan
Things like lamb chops can be placed in the oven (cooked on both sides for 15 minutes on gas mark 5) before being browned off (fried in a frying pan) or they can be cooked completely in the oven (cooked on both sides for 15 minutes on gas mark 5 and then brown off at gas mark 8). The latter method is not recommended though because the meat can overcook during the browning process.
Lamb Chops can be cooked in the oven and then fried off (browned off)
NOTE: If your lamb chops are more than 1cm thick, consider putting a couple of cuts/slices through the meat (penetrating it halfway) during the cooking process just to make sure the meat cooks inside properly.