Monday, 14 January 2013

Pork Shoulder with onion gravy

There's a restaurant within stumbling distance from our house that serves the best Schweinebraten ever. It comes with a huge chunk of Maultaschen and potato salad. It's German stodgy goodness on a plate, real stick to your ribs food and perfect for this colder weather. I've been looking for way to recreate this dish, sadly without the Maultaschen or the potato salad (or the glass of red wine I have with it!) Instead I serve it with slow braised, oniony, red cabbage and rich onion gravy. This is actually a very simple recipe, just a few ingredients, a few hours in the oven (or crock pot) and your house smells warm and welcoming. There are quite a few onions involved, but they cook down to make a sweet gravy that is the perfect accompaniment.

4-5 pounds of pork shoulder roast, or pork butt ( I used two smaller pieces so will adjust cooking times a little)
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 medium onions finely sliced
1 1/2 cups chicken stock (reduce to 1 cup if using slow cooker)
salt & pepper
1 Tablespoon caraway seeds
a small sprig of fresh rosemary (for dried use a small pinch)
a couple of sprigs of fresh thyme (for dried use 1/2 teaspoon)
a couple of sprigs of fresh sage (1/2 teaspoon of dried)

Preheat oven to 175C/350F
Add 2 tablespoons olive oil to a heavy Dutch oven pan. Roll the meat in the oil and then season well with salt and pepper and sprinkle over the caraway seeds.
Add the 4 sliced onions, the herbs and pour over the chicken stock.

Place a lid on the Dutch oven and bake for about 2 1/2 -3 hours until the pork is cooked, slightly browned but not falling apart.

Remove from the oven and allow the pork to rest for a few minutes. With a stick blender, blend the remaining onions and pan juices with a knob of butter until smooth. You don't have to do this but I find it makes the gravy a little thicker.

Slice the pork and pour over the gravy. Serve with oniony braised red cabbage.

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