Chef Chuck Hughes took a day off from hosting his Cooking channel show "Chuck's Day Off" to make Kathie Lee and Hoda some meals from his new cookbook, "Chuck's Day Off." Get your cup of Joe ready because he's making braised pork shoulder with coffee glaze and a fall white wine sparkling spritzer.
Fall white wine spritzer
If you're like me and you don't drink, try this spritzer with apple champagne and ginger ale.
- 6 strawberries, hulled and halved
- 4 oz Riesling or other crisp white wine, chilled
- 2 oz club soda, ginger ale, flavored sparkling water, or apple champagne
- Blueberries and sliced peaches for garnish
In a jar, combine the strawberries with the wine. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Pour into a glass, top with dub soda,and garnish with a couple of blueberries and peach slices.
Chef's note: Apple champagne is my favorite non-alcoholic drink. It's made with the traditional Méthode Champenoise process and is available in white or rose. You can find it in Montreal at Les Douceurs du Marche. Sparkling apple cider is a good substitute.
Pork shoulder with coffee glaze
Prep time: 30 minutes plus 12 hours for curing
Cook time: 3 hours
In this recipe, the classic pairing of pork and shellfish is given a bittersweet twist with an espresso glaze.
Curing the pork shoulder/ Dry Marinade
- 1/2 cup coarse salt
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 tablespoons black peppercorns, crushed
- 2 tablespoons juniper berries, crushed
- 1 boneless pork shoulder, about 5-6 pounds
Braising the pork shoulder
- 1/4 cup canola oil
- 2 medium carrots, coarsely chopped
- 2 celery ribs, coarsely chopped
- 2 yellow onions, coarsely chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, crushed
- 4 cups veal or beef stock
- 1 cup old-fashioned or unfiltered apple juice
- 2 sprigs of thyme
- 4 cups braising liquid
- 2 tablespoons freshly brewed espresso
- 2 tablespoon cider vinegar
- 2 teaspoon honey
To cure the pork shoulder: In a bowl stir together the salt brown sugar, peppercorns, and juniper berries. Rub the pork shoulder all over with the salt mixture.Cover and refrigerate for 12 hours.
To braise the pork shoulder: Preheat oven to 350F. Wipe the salt mixture off the pork shoulder. In a large heavy pot, heat 2 tablespoons of the canola oil over medium-high heat. Sear the pork shoulder on all sides, about 5 minutes. Add the carrot, celery, onion, fennel and garlic; continue cooking, stirring frequently for another 5 minutes or until the vegetables are caramelized. Add the veal stock, apple juice, and thyme.
Cover with a lid or foil. Transfer to the oven and braise the pork shoulder for 3 hours or until tender. Transfer the pork belly to a cutting board and set aside to cool. Meanwhile, strain the braising liquid through a large sieve set over a bowl. Discard the solids and skim the excess fat from the braising liquid. Set aside 2 cups.
Glaze: Boil the braising liquid until reduced to 1 cup, about 15 minutes.Add the espresso, vinegar, and honey; continue cooking until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 5 minutes. Keep warm.
Finishing the pork shoulder: Cut the pork shoulder into large cubes.Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons canola oil in a large skillet over high heat. Sear the pork shoulder on all sides until crispy, about 3 minutes. Remove from the pan and keep warm.
Chef's note: The pork belly/shoulder can be braised a day ahead. Leave it in the braising liquid to cool then cover and place in the refrigerator.