Pork Cooked in Red Wine with Carrots

Pork Cooked in Red Wine with Carrots

Serves 4-6

3 pounds boneless pork shoulder or unsmoked, uncured pork leg meat, cut into 8 pieces of more or less equal size

Salt and freshly-ground black pepper

Olive oil

All-purpose flour

2 large onions, peeled, cut in half through the poles and then sliced

4 cloves garlic, minced

1 bottle (750 ml) dry red wine

2 cups low-salt chicken or beef stock (boxed is fine)

2 branches fresh rosemary, plus one teaspoon of finely minced fresh rosemary

1 cup canned Italian plum tomatoes (you can also use canned diced tomatoes if that’s easier)

1 pound carrots, peeled, and cut into 3-inch lengths

In a 3 or 4 quart saucepan, combine the stock and all the wine except 2 tablespoons and bring the mixture to a boil.  (Set the 2 tablespoons of wine aside.)  Reduce the heat, then allow the mixture to boil until it has reduced to around 4 cups of liquid, about 20 minutes or so.  Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.

In the meantime, salt and pepper the pork pieces and let them sit while you cook the onions.  Heat ¼ cup of olive oil in a large Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid.  When shimmering, add the onions with a little salt and pepper, and cook them over medium heat until they just start to brown, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally so they don’t burn.  Add the minced garlic and cook for a minute.  Using a slotted spoon, take the vegetables from the Dutch oven and let the excess oil drip back into the pot.  Add the vegetables to the wine and stock mixture.

If the Dutch oven looks a little dry, add some more oil and let it heat to shimmering.  Put about a cup of flour on a dinner plate and dredge four of the pork pieces in the flour, shaking off the excess.  Lightly brown the pork pieces on all sides in the hot oil, then take the pieces out and repeat the process with the remaining four pieces of pork, adding more oil if necessary.

Add the tomatoes to the pot, mashing them with the spoon, and scraping the bottom of the pot to dislodge the flavor bits.  Add a teaspoon of salt and some more pepper, then add the wine/stock/vegetable mixture and the pork to the pot, along with the rosemary branches.  Bring it to a gentle simmer on the stovetop, then cover the pot and put it in the oven for an hour.

After one hour, carefully take the pot from the oven, uncover it, add the carrots, replace the lid, and put the pot back in the oven for an hour and a half.  The pork pieces should be tender and nearly falling apart.  Remove the pork and carrots from the pot and set them aside in a bowl covered with foil.  Strain the liquid in the pot through a fine mesh strainer and press on the vegetables to release all their juices and flavor.

Add the strained liquid back to the pot and set the pot over medium heat.  Taste the liquid for salt and pepper, and add the reserved 2 tablespoons of wine and the teaspoon of minced rosemary.  Let the mixture boil for a couple of minutes to reduce a bit until it has a saucy consistency.  Add the pork and carrots back to the pot to heat through.

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