Succulent Braised Tuscan Pork Roast
Tip: For best results,
marinate the pork 1-3 days in advance. To save time, the pork can be marinated
at room temperature for up to 2 hours before cooking.
Prep time: 15 minutes (+ time to marinate)
Cook time: 2½ - 3 hours
2 c. dry red wine, such as Chianti
1 large red onion, chopped
3-4 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
4 fresh rosemary sprigs
fresh thyme sprigs
2 bay leaves
T. whole fennel seeds, crushed
1 t. red pepper flakes
3 - 3½ lbs. pork shoulder, trimmed and cut into 2 or 3 large pieces
2 T. extra virgin olive oil
Sea salt and black pepper, to taste
14.5-oz. can Italian plum tomatoes, diced and undrained
1 - 2 c. chicken broth, preferably organic
(Optional) Fresh parsley, chopped
1. Add wine, red onion, garlic, rosemary, thyme, bay leaves, crushed fennel
seeds, and red pepper flakes to a large glass or other non-reactive bowl and
stir to combine.
2. Add pork chunks to the bowl and turn until each piece is covered. Cover and
place the bowl in the refrigerator for at least 8 hours. Turn pork occasionally
while marinating to evenly distribute flavors.
3. To prepare, remove the bowl from the refrigerator and remove pork pieces from the marinade. Pat dry with paper towels and set aside.
4. Separate the marinade liquid from the solids and reserve both, discarding
the woody herb stems and bay leaves. Set aside.
5. Heat the olive oil in a large heavy-duty skillet or Dutch oven over
medium-high heat. Add the marinated pork and sear until evenly browned on all
sides, approximately 8-10 minutes. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste.
6. Add the solids from the marinade and cook until onions are soft and
translucent, approximately 10-12 minutes, stirring frequently.
7. Add liquid from marinade to skillet and scrape up the brown bits from
the bottom of the pan. Continue cooking until liquid is reduced to
approximately one-third of its original volume.
8. Add tomatoes and 1 cup chicken broth and stir to combine. Cover and
reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 2 to 2½ hours, stirring every half hour
or so. Add more chicken broth, if needed, while cooking.
9. When pork can be pulled apart easily with a fork, remove from heat and let rest in warm juices for 10-15 minutes. Serve immediately over a bed of creamy polenta and garnish with chopped fresh parsley, if desired.