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Slow-Roasted Pork Shoulder with Carrots, Onions, and Garlic

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Serves 4 with leftovers (or 8 without).

  • by from Fine Cooking
    Issue 97

This succulent roast with meltingly tender vegetables couldn't be simpler to make: just pop it in the oven in the morning, and let it cook slowly all day long. the result: meat with an amazing fall-off-the-bone texture.

  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 6-3/4- to 7-lb. boneless pork shoulder roast
  • 1 large yellow onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick rings
  • 3 medium carrots, cut into sticks 1/2 inch wide and 2 to 2-1/2 inches long
  • 10 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 cup dry white wine

Combine 2 Tbs. salt and 2 tsp. pepper in a small bowl and rub the mixture all over the pork. Put the pork, fat side up, in a large roasting pan (about 12x16x3 inches). Cover and refrigerate overnight or for up to 3 days.

Remove the pork from the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for 1 to 1-1/2 hours before cooking.

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 300°F. Uncover the pork and roast until tender everywhere but the very center when pierced with a fork, 4 to 4-1/2 hours. Add the onion, carrots, garlic, wine, and 1 cup water to the roasting pan and continue to roast, stirring the vegetables occasionally, until the pork is completely tender, about 1 hour more.

Remove the roast from the oven and raise the oven temperature to 375°F. Using tongs, separate the pork into 8 to 10 large, rustic chunks and spread out on the pan. If most of the liquid has evaporated, add a splash more water to the pan to create a little more juice. (It shouldn’t be soupy.) Return the pork to the oven and continue to roast until nicely browned on the newly exposed surfaces, about 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven, transfer the meat and vegetables to a serving platter, and tent loosely with foil. Let rest for 20 minutes. Skim the excess fat from the juices and serve the juices with the vegetables and meat.

Serving Suggestions

Serve the pork and vegetables with Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes or Garlicky White Beans.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 630; Fat (g): fat g 29; Fat Calories (kcal): 260; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 11; Protein (g): protein g 75; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 13; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 6; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 3.5; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 1090; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 235; Fiber (g): fiber g 1;

Photo: Scott Phillips

This recipe is delicious! After making it the first time, which was wonderful, I have made it many times since with a couple slight changes/additions. I plop about a tablespoon of bacon grease on top of the roast when I first put it in. I add chicken broth instead of water. I also throw in more veggies such as mushrooms and celery. It is amazing every time and I even used a much smaller roast with the same cook time and it didn't over cook. Thanks!

This recipe is amazing, my family could not get enough. The roast and vegetables were cooked to perfection. I served it with both garlic sweet potatoes and regular mashed potatoes for those non sweet potato lovers.

Fantastic and easy. I also cut back on the salt (especially if the roast I get is smaller). I use more onions because i really like them, but that's the beauty of this recipe--easy to add or cut back on something.

Amazing!!!! The only change I made was to separate the fat from the juices before adding the vegetables, wine, and water.

Great Recipe! The depth of the pork flavor is wonderful. The roasted caramelized onions divine. Definitely a keeper.

O...M...G. This is good. Have made it several times. Next time will make two. Loved the leftovers with poached eggs and hash. Also good eaten straight from the fridge.

This is a wonderful & easy recipe. I also reduced the salt and added more veg. It's great served with the garlic mash (and yes, the garlic mash needs all the garlic it calls for) or roasties. We make this frequently - especially when pork shoulder is on sale :)

Loved this recipe. I did reduce the salt and also rubbed with sage. The secret is cooking it long enough...Amazing flavor.

Not an amazing recipe by itself. I think you have to turn it into ragout or use it in a burrito.

Amazing! so few ingredients yet amazing flavor. I use a bone in as well to add flavor and like the way it pulls off bone

Every time I make this recipe I can't believe how easy and delicous it is. I used a bone-in pork shoulder and adjusted the cooking time accordingly. Doubling the vegetables is a good idea. I served it with the garlicky white beans and the potato gratin from Fine Cooking

So good. I added potatoes and would probably cut back on the salt a bit, but so good.

Wonderful. Very easy to prepare and flavorful. I added fresh rosemary and also, as suggested, more carrots and onion. The ONLY critique I have is that it was a little too salty for our taste. I would reduce or omit the salt somewhat and just use a nice herb rub with pepper. Pork is naturally salty. I prepared the suggested Creamy Garlic Mashed Potatoes which was perfect with the root vegetables. I will prepare this again, no doubt. Ummm...

this is a wonderful recipe - we have made it several times since it appeared in the magazine. i also increase the carrots and onions. we love the leftovers prepared according to the accompanying pork ragout recipe and served over the soft polenta from the same recipe. i never was a huge fan of polenta until i made it this way - delicious!

I've made this a few times now. Easy and meltingly flavourful. I also try to buy as lean a pork shoulder as possible, and it still turns out very tender.

Totally wonderful and super easy. We are absolutely putting this into rotation. I added 3 onions, at the beginning, a tiny bit of thyme and rosemary, because I had them, and probably tripled the carrots. This was so well loved there were people 'doing the dishes' (picking at the pan before I managed to put the leftovers away).

Rick is over there still moaning about how good it is. I came home from work at lunch to put it in the over, but next time I'll put it in before I leave in the morning. The roast was only about 5 lbs, but it got better and better, best at least 7 hours later. I added a full 1 lb bag of baby carrots, 1 lb of mushrooms and next time I'd add some potatoes, and half hour before finishing, some green beans. I cooked it on a rack, thinking there would be fat, but there were no fat drippings. (I used a pork shoulder bone roast)

This is a great recipe. Perfect for entertaining. The result was tasty and tender and I only had one problem...I should have done a much bigger roast! My guests loved it and wanted the recipe dammit. I just added one thing. To the oil, salt and pepper I added a mashed up stock cube and then rubbed the mixture all over the joint and left it to rest as per the recipe.

Just made this today for the second time. I can't believe I forgot to rate it before. What an excellent recipe! I remember there were not enough vegetables the first time, so I doubled the carrots and onions. I used a bone in shoulder and got the same great results. I think I will try Chris' suggestion for carnitas with the leftovers.

[Edit on 5/5/09] We did this recipe again and I made pork for mexican burritos (aka carnitas) with the leftovers this time. I used cider vinegar, chili powder, cumin, salt and black pepper and warmed the pulled pork with the spices in a pot. Served it up with large flour tortillas, some warmed leftover rice, some black beans, salsa, cilantro and queso blanco (Monterrey Jack would also work) - they were marvelous! [original] I wound up using 6.5 lbs of large cut 'country style ribs' which was more or less a boned shoulder which I bought from a large warehouse store with good meat quality. I roasted in a large pan for about 3 total hours since the meat was in 5-6 smaller chunks. This was absolutely wonderful. Leftovers from this recipe, as described in the magazine, were used in pulled pork sandwiches with a Carolina vinegar sauce and a pork ragu. Great recipe with great value - this recipe and those derived from it made at least 12-14 good quality, delicious meals.

This was fabulous! I made this just for me and my husband and we enjoyed all the other recipes using the leftovers. Made great pork tacos too.

I've made this twice, once with organic pork shoulder, the second with more mundane piece of meat. The more expensive meat was better, but even the second one got raves. I added small yukon gold potatoes for a pretty effortless result. Yum. Also, the second time the meat came tied with a"grid" type of string, and I should have cut it off at the beginning. When it was almost done, getting the string off sacrificed some good brown bits. Next time I'll know better. Have done the leftovers with organic polenta, pretty wonderful. This roast and a great salad is terrific entertaining food, simple, no fuss, delicious.

Excellent, never did get to use the meat in any of the other recipes as it was so good. Spent a month trying to remember where I had found the recipe. Found it today and have placed this in my favorite file so as to have available for the future

I've made this twice already and both times it turned out excellent and it's very addicting. I added additional carrots the second time because those were so tasty as well. Both times we had left-overs so I made the pulled pork sandwich recipe with cabbage, caper and herb slaw that's on this site and they turned out great as well.

Excellent, full of flavour. Recipe has been added as a family favourite.

I could not find the boneless pork shoulder so I am not sure I used the right cut. I used bone-in pork shoulder - it had a ton of fat and sinew that was hard to cut away and cook away. So the finished meal did not present well - even in a rustic cut way. The taste was delicious but rather heavy and so it was much better the next time as stew with polenta. Does anyone have another meat cut suggestion - was I supposed to use pork shoulder loin/

Just finished the roast pork. May seem strange but I did make this for just my husband and myself as we like the idea of having quick meal ingredients in the freezer. I am looking forward to the meal with the soft polenta for next week. Later this week, we will do the pork sandwiches. My only complaint is the amount of salt. It made the juices and the vegetables too salty so if you are not a salt lover, you may want to reduce the amount of salt.

Absolutely delicious. The only thing different I did was added more carrots.

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