Last Saturday was one of those busy errand days where you do nothing but run from store to store, then come home and clean the house and go for a run. You know – they kind of day that makes you really hungry, but by the end of it, there’s no way you want to cook. Good thing I started this braise hours before dinner, before I’d cleaned the house and expended all my energy. Good thing it was a mostly one-pot meal and I’d already washed and put away all the prep dishes before collapsing. And dinner? Not to get overly Martha, but it was a very Good Thing.
I used pomegranate juice, fresh orange juice and red wine as my braising liquids and dried guijillo peppers and tart cherries for flavor. The juice and wine reduced into a deliciously concentrated sauce, the peppers lent some good spice to contrast the plump cherries and the meat was so very tender that I had a hard time moving it to the serving dish without it falling apart.
This dish is everything I wanted at the end of that long day. And leftovers were just as good or even better. My favorite kind of meal.
2 tbsp. olive oil
1.5 – 2 lb. lean pork shoulder
salt and pepper
1 yellow onion, diced
1 cup POM pomegranate juice
1 cup red wine
juice of 1 navel orange
1/2 cup dried sweetened tart cherries
1 dried guajillo pepper, diced
Set a large oven-safe pot over medium heat. Heat the olive oil, then sear the pork for about 5 minutes on each side until a golden brown char forms. Add the remaining ingredients to the pot, cover and place in the oven.
Turn the oven on to 325° and cook for 3 hours, turning occasionally.
Makes 6 servings.