Winter’s Delight: A Veeeeerrrryy Slow Roasted Pork, Salsa Verde and a Brussel Sprout Slaw

roast_pork

I have been making this pork for years….and there is honestly nothing easier than this recipe, which takes about 20 mins of prep: rubbing the meat with garlic, olive oil, a few herbs, some salt and pepper, and sticking it in the oven at a very low temperature for a very long time. This leaves you with plenty of time to make the salsa verde and what ever other side dishes you decide on…perhaps even a little time to get your nails done 🙂
We served it with some tortillas and made tacos, but a few boiled baby potatoes would be good, or fresh crusty bread. A nice green salad or roasted cauliflower. Whatever is your fancy.

But back to the pork. It requires an 8 pound  shoulder (otherwise known as a butt – why?) and a lovely fresh salsa verde (not pictured) made from parsley, celery leaves and the secret ingredient – anchovies.

The recipe for the pork and salsa verde is below.
I got it from Epicurious.com, and I would not change a thing, but here are 2 comments – I did not use a bone in shoulder; my cut of meat was deboned and it worked wonderfully. Also, the meat cooks faster than the recipe indicates (if you read the comments you’ll see that this opinion is pretty wide spread). Please use an instant read thermometer that is placed in the thickest part of the meat, and keep checking it. Once it reaches the required internal temp of 185F / 85C, take it out and let it rest. The cooking time for me was around 4 hours, not 6.5 as the recipe suggests, although I realize temperatures vary from oven to oven.

Now for the slaw.
I would never have thought to eat Brussel Sprouts raw. Now that I’m doing it, it seems to be the most obvious thing! And so easy –  just a little slicing and dicing, add some olive oil, lemon juice, freshly cracked pepper and course sea salt, and there you have  it: a delicious fresh crunchy slaw that sings when pared with the dressing. I’m sure if you experiment with other ingredients…perhaps add some toasted nuts, or goat cheese,or maybe sliced jalapenos, you’ll find that pretty much anything goes.
I’m not going to give you exact quantities – but as a side dish, for 8 people, I would say about 20 Brussell Sprouts would do the trick. Slice them thinly, place in a bowl, add a glug of best quality olive oil you have, some lemon juice or white vinegar, the salt and pepper and taste. Add a little more if necessary.
Try it – you will love it!

Roast Pork with Salsa Verde

Salsa Verde:

  • 3 anchovy fillets (don’t leave these out; you don’t taste anchovy, but what they do is lend a saltiness to the salsa that regular salt cannot do)
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled
  • 3/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • 1/3 cup (lightly packed) chopped fresh celery leaves
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon peel
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh sage
  • 1/2 cup olive oil

Pork Shoulder:

  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1 tablespoon coarse kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 8-pound / 3.5 kg whole bone-in heritage pork shoulder roast (Boston butt)

 

To make Salsa Verde

With processor running, drop anchovies and garlic through feed tube and finely chop. Scrape down sides of bowl. Add parsley, celery leaves, lemon juice, lemon peel, red wine vinegar, chopped rosemary, and chopped sage. Using on/off turns, process until almost smooth. With machine running, gradually add olive oil. Transfer salsa verde to bowl. Season with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.

For pork shoulder:
Position rack in lowest third of oven; preheat to 450°F / 230 C. Mix garlic, sage, rosemary, coarse kosher salt, and freshly ground black pepper in small bowl. Brush oil all over pork, then rub spice mixture all over. Place pork on rack set in roasting pan. Roast 20 minutes. Reduce heat to 300°F / 150 C and continue to roast until instant read thermometer inserted into center registers 185°F / 85 C, about 6 1/2 hours*. Remove pork from oven; tent with foil to keep warm. Let rest 15 minutes. Cut into 1/2-inch-thick pieces and serve with salsa verde alongside.

* A reminder – mine took less than this – about 4 hours…please rely on your instant read thermometer.

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