Pork Shoulder Ragu

I apologize for the messy photo, but I was so excited to eat this that I could barely stand to wait. This is basically Italian pulled pork in the best way. You braise a small pork shoulder in a tomato and red wine sauce until it falls apart into shreds of moist, saucy meat. It's heavenly on its own with a side of some bread, but we decided to make our own tagliatelle to toss it with. The recipe is from Dinner: A Love Story, who call it an instant dinner party, and I can totally see it being perfect for that. But even if it's just for two, I would make this again over and over.

Pork Shoulder Ragu
(Recipe from Dinner: A Love Story by Jenny Rosentrach)

  • 2 1/2 pound boneless pork shoulder
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 1 large can whole tomatoes with their juice
  • 1 cup red wine (we used a cabernet sauvignon)
  • 5 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 5 sprigs fresh oregano
  • 1 small handful fennel seeds
  • 1 tbsp hot sauce, for smokiness (I used Sriracha)
  • 1 - 2 pounds wide pasta (we used tagliatelle even though the original recipe calls for pappardelle)

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. 
  2. Liberally salt and pepper the pork roast. Heat a large Dutch oven over medium high and add olive oil and butter. Once butter is melted, add pork shoulder to Dutch oven and brown on all sides, about 8-10 minutes total. 
  3. Add the onion and garlic and saute for 1 minute. 
  4. Add tomatoes, wine, thyme, oregano, fennel seeds, and hot sauce. Bring to a boil, then cover and put in the oven. Braise for 3-4 hours, turning the pork every hour or so. 
  5. When meat is practically falling apart, remove the Dutch oven from the oven and transfer the meat to a large bowl. Using two forks, pull the meat apart into shreds, then return to the Dutch oven and combine with sauce. 
  6. Cook your pasta, drain, and toss with a liberal amount of ragu, adding more to your liking. You may have leftover pork (we had about 3/4 cup left over). Serve. 

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