Thursday, February 21, 2013

Cabernet Braised Pork Shoulder with Noodles, Asparagus with Warm Champagne Vinaigrette

Cabernet Braised Pork Shoulder with Noodles, Asparagus with Warm Champagne Vinaigrette
by Gary Gee

The Wine Dive recommends Simply Naked Cabernet Sauvignon to be paired with this dish.

Serves 6

For the pork:
1 bone-in pork shoulder (8-9 pounds)
Coarse salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 1/2 cups Cabernet Sauvignon
1 cup light soy sauce
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
1 cup chicken stock
1 large onion, sliced
1 head garlic, peeled, sliced in half crosswise
3 bay leaves
2 Tablespoons cornstarch
¼ cup warm water

For the asparagus:
2 pounds fresh asparagus, woody ends trimmed, washed
1 Tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 Tablespoons champagne vinegar
1 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon brown sugar
3 Tablespoons bacon drippings or pork fat (skimmed from the roast juices)
Coarse salt
Freshly ground black pepper

For the noodles:
Coarse salt
16 ounces egg noodles
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
½ teaspoons dried thyme
Fresh ground black pepper
Fresh parsley, chopped

For the pork: 
Rinse the pork shoulder under cold running water. Pat dry with paper towels. In a nonreactive container large enough to hold the pork and marinade in the refrigerator, season the pork liberally with salt and pepper. Combine next 8 ingredients to form the marinade and mix well. Pour over the pork, fat side up, cover, and refrigerate overnight, turning over once.

Preheat the oven to 250°. Place the marinade and the pork, fat side up, in a large, lidded Dutch oven. Bake at 250° for 7 hours, or until the internal temperature reaches 180°. Remove the pork to a large platter and cover. Defat the cooking liquid (reserving some for vinaigrette) and strain out solids. Return the liquid to the pot and bring to a boil. Reduce by ½, mix cornstarch with warm water and add to the liquid. Boil and stir until thickened. Taste and adjust seasoning, cover and reduce to a simmer.

Preheat the oven to 500°. Line a broiling pan with foil, replace a rack and spray with nonstick cooking spray. Carefully place the pork on the rack and bake until the skin gets brown and crispy, turning every 5 minutes for even browning, about 20 minutes total. Remove from the heat, cover with foil, and let rest for 20 minutes.

For the asparagus
Prepare a bowl of ice water to shock the asparagus after cooking. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the asparagus and cook just until fork-tender. Immediately plunge into ice water to stop the cooking. Drain and set aside.

In a shallow skillet, heat the mustard, vinegars, and sugar over medium heat. Whisk to combine. Slowly drizzle the fat into the skillet, whisking to emulsify. Season to taste with plenty of salt and pepper. Add the asparagus and carefully toss to coat. Remove to a serving dish.

For the noodles: Cook the noodles in salted boiling water until al dente. Drain. Add the butter, thyme, salt, pepper, and parsley. Toss well and cover to keep warm.

To serve: Carefully slice the pork into serving pieces. The skin may be removed in large pieces, then sliced and returned to the top of the sliced pork. Spoon the sauce over all. Serve with asparagus and buttered noodles.

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