Orange Juice Braised Pork with Roasted Pineapple/Cilantro Relish
Prep Time: 10 minutes | Cook Time: 90 minutes
..... Chef Ryan Scott
Dietary Tags | Serves 4-6
2 ½ lbs pork shoulder
1 tablespoon kosher salt
½ tablespoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups orange juice
1 cup chicken stock
1 onion, peeled and quartered
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
½ jalapeño pepper, chopped
1 bay leaf
½ bunch fresh cilantro
1 ½ tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cubed
For the Relish:
½ fresh pineapple, peeled cored and diced (about 4 cups)
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 teaspoon minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon minced garlic
½ red onion, diced small
1 jalapeño, de-seeded and minced (about ¼ cup)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
⅛ teaspoon garlic salt
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
⅛ teaspoon ground pepper
Pinch chili flake
½ bunch scallions, sliced thin (about ½ cup loosely packed)
¼ bunch cilantro, roughly chopped (about ½ cup loosely packed)
Don’t add the herbs to the relish until you are about to serve. If the herbs sit in the acid from the lemon and pineapple for too long, they will start to turn brown.
Avoid using Maui Gold pineapples if you can; they have a higher sugar content and will break down to mush when you roast them.
Cut the excess fat from the pork shoulder and cut the meat into 2” cubes. Toss the cubes of pork in a large bowl with the salt, pepper, and oregano.
Heat the olive oil in a large braising pan or dutch oven over high heat. Add the seasoned pork and cook undisturbed for 5 minutes to get a nice brown sear. Stir the pork cubes and sear the other side until browned, 4-5 minutes.
Once the pork is well seared and browned, turn the heat to low and add the orange juice, chicken stock, onion, garlic, jalapeño, and bay leaf. Stir to combine and use a wooden spoon to loosen the bits of pork that may be stuck to the bottom of the pan.
Put the fresh cilantro on top of the braising mixture and put a tight-fitting lid on the pot. Cook the pork on low heat until the meat is fork-tender, about 3 hours.
Once the pork is cooked, use tongs to remove the cilantro stems and discard them. The leaves will have fallen off and become part of the sauce; that’s totally ok. Use a slotted spoon to remove the pork from the broth and set aside in a bowl.
Increase the heat on the pot to high and boil the broth until it is reduced to about 1 ½ cups. Take the pot off the heat and whisk in the butter.
Add the pork back into the pot and stir to coat all the pieces with sauce, being careful not to let the pork fall apart too much. Serve with mashed potatoes or rice and the pineapple relish.
Preheat the Broiler to 500°F
While the pork cooks, make the relish. In a large mixing bowl, stir together the red onion, jalapeño, lemon juice, garlic salt, kosher salt, pepper, and chili flake and 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Set aside.
Separately, toss the diced pineapple with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, the minced garlic, and minced ginger. Spread the pineapple on a parchment or foil-lined baking sheet and broil until the pineapple caramelizes and turns a dark brown at the edges, about 15 minutes.
Let the pineapple cool for 10 minutes before adding to the macerated onion mixture. Once cool, fold the roasted pineapple with the onion jalapeño mixture in the large mixing bowl. Add the cilantro and scallions and fold to combine.