334: Save this for a Sunday

Cider-Braised Pork 1

Cider-Braised Pork with Apple-Onion-Dijon Sauce (PDF)
Recipe 334 of 365

Serve tender slices of braised pork as is, or over a bed of mashed potatoes or couscous, which will sop up the sweet, rich braising liquid.

TIME: 45 minutes active time
MAKES: 4 servings

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 (2-pound) pork shoulder roast, netting intact
1 tablespoon peanut or vegetable oil, plus more, if needed
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 small leeks, halved lengthwise and cut into half moons
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 pound small yellow pearl onions, peeled*
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
2 1/2 to 3 1/2 cups hard apple cider
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and cubed
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Heat a large, heavy, ovenproof soup pot or Dutch oven (with a tight-fitting lid) over medium-high heat. Place the flour on a small plate. Season the flour liberally with salt and pepper. Pat the pork dry, then coat it on all sides with the flour mixture.

When the pot is hot, add the peanut oil, and sear the pork (leaving the string on) until nicely browned on all sides, about 3 to 4 minutes per side, wiping the pot out and adding more oil if needed. Transfer the pork to a plate, and carefully wipe the pot clean with paper towels. Reduce the heat to medium.

Add the olive oil to the pot, then the leeks, and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Add the garlic, peeled onions, and thyme, and season with salt and pepper.

Veg for cider-braised pork

Cook and stir for 2 minutes, then nestle the pork in between the vegetables. Add apple cider until it comes about halfway up the side of the pork, cover the pot, and transfer it to the oven. Braise for 1 hour, then turn the pork over, add the apples, and braise for an additional 45 minutes.

Transfer the pork to a cutting board, cover with foil, and let rest. Meanwhile, return the braising liquid to the stovetop, and simmer for 10 minutes, until considerably thickened. Stir in the mustard, then season to taste with salt and pepper.

Remove the strings from the pork, slice it, and serve immediately, topped with apples, vegetables, and braising liquid.

*To peel onions, trim off the root strings with a small knife, and score the bottom of the onion with a small “x.” Cook in boiling water for 1 minute, then refresh under cold water, and peel.


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