It’s been cold here on the Island lately, so it was time for a French Winter classic, Porc aux Pruneaux et Cidre. There are some excellent local hard ciders these days, especially from neighboring Jefferson County, but I used Chelan Gold from Eastern Washington this time. Soak a cup of prunes in Hard Cider over night, then take a pork shoulder and insert the wrong end of a wooden spoon almost all the way through it horizontally three times, then stuff those tunnels with the prunes. Then brown it in a Dutch Oven with some shallots, garlic and carrots and braise it in hard cider for about 2 hours until 165°. Remove solids to a cutting board and tent with foil. Remove as much fat as possible from the pan and reduce to a thick sauce. Here it is, ready to slice:
Great with Thyme-Roasted Fingerling Potatoes. I get all my spuds and garlic from Betsey Wittick at Laughing Crow Farm here on Bainbridge. Halve potatoes horizontally, toss with olive oil, salt & pepper, a garlic clove and a few branches of English Thyme. Roast cut side down, covered for 30 minutes at 400°, remove thyme, turn the fingerlings over and cook uncovered for another 15 minutes.
Here’s a great shot of Betsey at the Bainbridge Island Farmers’ Market:
And she’s got a terrific blog of her own, right HERE.