I love fall, the temperature is getting cooler, the leaves are changing, and its football season. It’s that time of year when I am home more in the evenings and ready to heat up the stove, turn on the oven and cook! Sunday night as I waited for Kyle to arrive home from the Bronco game, I decided to try something out of my comfort zone, PORK. I don’t really like it, don’t order it at a restaurant and don’t buy it at the store. Problem is, Kyle loves it and it seems I’m the only one not partaking in “the other white meat”. So here goes…
Juicy Braise Pork
2 lbs pork shoulder or tenderloin, cut into 8 pieces
Salt and Pepper
3Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
3 celery stalks, chopped
2 carrots, chopped
4 gloves of garlic, roughly chopped
4 Tbsp tomato paste
1 Tbsp flour
2 ½ cups red or white wine
½ cup beef broth
1 bunch of parsley stems, tied with a string
2 bay leaves
Preheat oven to 325°. Pat the pork dry with paper towels and season both sides with salt and pepper.
In a large cast iron pan or skillet heat oil over medium – high heat. Place four pieces of pork at a time into the pan and brown the meat on all sides until a golden crust forms. Transfer pork to a plate and set aside. To the pan, add the onion, celery, carrot and ½ cup of wine and cook for 5-7 minutes until vegetables are softened. Add the garlic and cook for another two minutes. Stir in the tomato paste and cook until you smell the sweet aroma of the paste, about 3 minutes. Whisk in the remaining wine and reduce sauce by half. Pour half of the sauce into a glass or ceramic baking dish. Place pork into dish along with the parsley and bay leaves. Pour remaining sauce in the dish, evenly. Add water if the sauce does not come up to the top of the pork. Cover the dish and place in the over to braise until the meat is fork tender. Salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving platter and serve.
A few things to keep in mind, you can make this dish in a Dutch oven and then skip the transfer to a baking dish step. Depending on the type of pork you use, the baking time will vary tremendously. If you are using a shoulder cut, it will take longer, up to 3 hours because it is generally a tougher meat. If you use tenderloin, it will be more like 20 minutes in the oven.
It’s really easy to make, doesn’t take much time from pan to oven and can be paired with anything. It has great flavor, even I ate it and really like it!