a few sprigs of thyme, (eaves stripped and chopped)
sea salt and black pepper
1 small or ½ large black pudding
1 tblsp olive oil
45 g butter or so
2-3 glasses marsala (sweet not dry)
4 fresh figs (halved)
Preheat the oven to 180°c/gas 4.
Slice down through the middle of the pork fillet with a sharp knife to the point at which you can open it out like a book, but it remains in one piece.
Sprinkle with a little of the thyme and some sea salt.
Take the pudding out of it’s jacket and crumble it along the middle of the pork fillet, not quite to the ends. Roll up the pork and tie it at intervals with string.
Heat the olive oil and a knob of butter in a frying pan, large enough to take the pork fillet, until it is foaming. Add the meat and brown on all sides for a few minutes, then remove to a plate and season with salt and pepper.
Pour off any fat that looks brown, then deglaze the pan with a glass of marsala, letting it bubble and reduce by about half. Pour in another glass and reduce a little more, then sprinkle in 1 tsp chopped thyme. Stir in a knob of butter, cut into small pieces, to make the sauce glossy. Add the halved figs and warm for 30 seconds.
Lay the pork fillet in the centre of a sheet of greaseproof paper, large enough to enclose it in a baggy parcel. Plop some figs on top and place the rest alongside. Pour the marsala sauce over the top. Close the parcel by folding up the sides and ends and securely and fastening with paper clips. Place on a baking tray and cook in the oven for 25 minutes.
Let the meat rest en papillote for 5 mins before unwrapping and lifting onto a board. Carve into thick slices and arrange with the figs on a warmed platter or on individual plates. Tip the sauce into a pan and reheat until bubbling, then pour it over the meat. Add a last sprinkle of thyme and serve, with mash and something green.