Cider-Braised Pork Shoulder with Apples

  • serves 4
Christine Cushing
Christine Cushing

Slow-cooked, rich and tender. This dish defines winter weekends. The cooked pork is so juicy and tender you can pull it apart with a fork. You can also substitute harissa sauce, by adding a small chopped fresh chile pepper to the onions instead. A 4-quart Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid is my cooking vessel of choice here. But any heavy-bottomed large pot will do the trick.

28 Ratings
Directions for: Cider-Braised Pork Shoulder with Apples


1 (about 3-4 pounds) bone-in fresh pork shoulder half (preferably picnic)

2 garlic, cloves, slivered

coarse salt and freshly cracked black pepper

2 Tbsp olive oil

2 large onion, sliced into 1/4-inch slices

¾ tsp ground cumin

½ tsp ground cardamom

½ tsp ground coriander

¼ tsp ground turmeric

⅒ tsp ground ginger

1 cinnamon stick

1 tsp harissa, or any hot sauce

½ cup Riesling

3 cup unfiltered apple cider

1 cup chicken stock

1 cup water

sprigs fresh coriander

2 Granny Smith apples, not peeled, cored, and cut in wedges

chopped fresh coriander for garnish


1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

2. Score pork in a crosshatch pattern.

3. Make slits all over meat with a small sharp knife and insert a garlic sliver in each slit.

4. Pat pork dry and season with salt and pepper.

5. Heat oil in a 4 quart Dutch oven over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then brown meat on all sides about 8 minutes

6. Transfer pork to a plate.

7. Add onions to pot and sauté over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until softened and starting to turn golden, about 5 minutes.

8. Add salt and pepper and sauté, stirring occasionally, until onions are caramelized, 8 to 10 minutes more.

9. Stir in spices and harissa.

10. Continue cooking onions for another 1-2 minutes.

11. Deglaze pan with Riesling, simmering until liquid has almost evaporated.

12. Stir in cider, stock and water and return pork to pot.

13. Add herb sprigs and apples.

14. Cover pot with a tight-fitting lid and braise pork in middle of oven until very tender, about 2 1/2 to 3 hours.

15. Transfer pork to a serving dish.

16. Boil juice in Dutch oven until reduced by 1/2 into a glaze, about 20 minutes.

17. Season to taste.

18. Slice pork and serve with the sauce

19. Garnish with the chopped coriander.

See more: Fruit, Main, Pork, North American, Braise, Fall, Herbs

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