Author Notes: Most pork confit recipes require a brine or dry rub for the pork before slow cooking it in its own fat. This recipe skips that step and ensures delectable flavor and tenderness by cooking it low and slow in duck fat. Duck fat is so wonderfully flavorful- why not skip the brine/rub, save time and enjoy decadent simplicity!
I serve this to rave reviews alongside a simple lentil salad or root vegetable puree. Make enough to ensure that you have leftovers. Pork confit makes to-die-for tacos!
- 5 pounds boneless Boston butt (pork shoulder), leave most of the fat on the meat
- Kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon fennel seeds
- 5 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon juniper berries
- 1/2 tablespoon black pepper
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled
- Enough duck fat to cover meat (about 11/2 quarts)
- Preheat the oven to 250̊ F. Warm the fat in a large deep pan by putting it in the oven while it preheats, or over low heat on the stove until it liquefies.
- Pull the pork out of the fridge and very liberally rub it with kosher salt. Pork likes salt, so do not be afraid of over salting. Let pork sit out and come to room temperature.
- Submerge the pork in the fat and add the fennel seeds, bay leaves, juniper berries, pepper, and garlic. It is very important that the pork is fully submerged throughout cooking. If you find you do not have enough, in a pinch, you can top it off with olive oil. Cook 4-5 hours, until extremely tender,
- The pork confit will be infinitely better if you let it sit in the fridge, cooled and covered in the fat for at least a week. However, overnight will suffice if you simply cannot wait!
- To serve the pork, heat the container to re-liquefy the fat, remove the pork and slice it into rectangle pieces, about 3”x1”x1”. Taste a small piece to see if it needs more salt. Season according to your taste.
- In a stainless-steel sauté pan, heat a little of the duck fat, when it is hot add the pork pieces and sear on all sides until each surface has a golden brown crust.
- NOTE: The pork can be kept in the fridge, submerged in fat for up to 2 months. When you are finished with the fat, warm it and strain it, removing all of the garlic, spices and pork bits, store in your refrigerator and reuse for your next confit adventure!
Cider Veal Reduction
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup shallots, peeled and chopped
- 6 cups cups cider
- 12 cups veal stock
- 10 fresh thyme sprigs
- A splash of apple vinegar
- Kosher salt
- In a 4-quart pot briefly sauté the shallots. Add the cider and reduce by ¾. Add the veal stock and fresh thyme sprigs. Reduce over medium heat until the sauce coats the back of a spoon.
- Pour sauce through a fine strainer (straining out the shallots and thyme) into another pot. Taste your sauce. Adjust seasoning by adding apple vinegar and salt. Add butter to help round out the flavors. If your sauce does not reduce down to coat the back of the spoon, you can remove the thyme and woosh it up in a blender with the shallots. This will give it a bit more body. Pass through a fine strainer.
- This recipe is a Community Pick!
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Pork with Cider