Weekly Winner: It may be time for a Pork Throwdown!

My husband and I are a pork loving couple.  There is nothing you can do with or to pork that generally, we are not a fan of. You may remember that a while back I posted “The Best Thing I Ever Made” and yes, it was pork.

This past week my husband did a lot of the cooking.  Yes, I do — occasionally — allow him to cook.  He is a fabulous cook and the funny thing is that for the first 12 or so years of our marriage, he was the primary day-to-day chef in the house.  I only cooked on special occasions.  All that changed a while ago when I suddenly discovered a true love of cooking.  But as I said, this week he decided to stake his claim back in the kitchen.  He made this Porchetta-Style Roast Pork last Sunday and declared that it was, quite possibly, “the best thing he’s made”.

Yep, it indeed might be time for a good, old-fashioned Pork Throwdown.  Which sounds so much better than a Pork-Off, don’t you agree?  Anyway I digress.

The recipe comes from Bon Appetit Magazine.  And yes, we are taking applications for judges if and when this Pork Throwdown takes place!

Porchetta-Style Roast Pork

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons fennel seeds
  • 1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
  • 1 5 1/2- to 6-pound boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt), excess fat trimmed with thin layer left intact
  • 6 large garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for brushing
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup low-salt chicken broth

Preparation

  • Stir fennel seeds in small skillet over medium-high heat until slightly darker in color and fragrant, 4 to 5 minutes. Transfer seeds to spice mill and cool.  Add kosher salt, peppercorns, and dried crushed red pepper. Grind to medium-fine consistency (not powder).
  • Place pork in 13x9x2-inch glass baking dish. Rub garlic all over pork, then coat with spice mixture. Loosely cover pork with waxed paper. Refrigerate overnight.
  • Preheat oven to 450°F. Brush large rimmed baking sheet with oil. Place roast, fat side up and coating intact, in center of sheet. Drizzle evenly with 2 tablespoons oil. Roast pork 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 300°F.  Roast pork until very tender and thermometer inserted into center of pork registers 190°F, about 3 hours 15 minutes longer. Transfer pork to cutting board; reserve baking sheet. Let pork rest 15 to 30 minutes.
  • Meanwhile, pour all pan juices into 2-cup measuring cup. Spoon off fat that rises to top. Place reserved baking sheet across 2 burners. Pour wine and broth onto baking sheet and bring to boil over medium-high heat, scraping up any browned bits. Boil until wine mixture is reduced to 3/4 cup, about 4 minutes. Add degreased pan juices and whisk to blend. Pour pan sauce into small bowl (sauce will be thin).
  • Thinly slice  roast. Serve with sauce.
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