Pork Cavalcanti

This delightful combination of pork, almonds and balsamic vinegar was invented – or at least, first published – by Ippolito Cavalcanti [1787 – 1859]. The Duc di Buonvicino, a small town in Calabria, Italy, near Naples, was well known in his time as a gourmet and culinary writer. His works, ‘Cucina Teorico Pratica’ and ‘Cusina Casarinola co la Lengua Napolitana’ embody a unique glimpse into the world of Neapolitan cuisine in the late 18th and early 19th centuries. His was an ancient Italian family, descendant from the 13th century poet and friend of Dante Alighieri, Guido Cavalcanti.



25g butter.

2 tablespoons olive oil.

300g pork fillet.

½ cup red wine.

2 tablespoons hot water.

Salt and pepper to taste.

2 teaspoons sugar.

¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon.

1 tablespoons balsamic vinegar.

1 tablespoon chopped almonds.

2 tablespoons elder flower syrup.

1 tablespoon capers.

Another 25g butter, diced.



Mix the sugar, cinnamon, vinegar, almonds, elder berries and capers together and set aside. Heat the butter and oil in a sauté pan over a hot element and brown the meat all over. Meanwhile bring the wine to the boil in a small separate saucepan and add to the meat together with the hot water. Bring to the boil again, add salt and pepper, reduce heat, cover and cook the meat for another ten minutes or until done. Remove and set meat to rest.

Add the almond mixture to the pan juices and cook, stirring continuously, for two minutes, add the next quantity of butter and swirl through. Slice the meat into thick medallions and return to the pan for two minutes. Serve immediately.


Serve with: Roast vegetables and green beans.


Serves: 2.

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