What comes to mind when you hear the words, “pork sandwich?” Are you thinking, crock pot pulled pork? An all-American BBQ pork on a potato bread roll, perhaps? A loaded summer sandwich with a side of baked beans and cold beer? Keep going. These are all happy and delicious thoughts!
But, today I want to take the pork sandwich a different direction. How about something more autumn appropriate?
This braised pork shoulder recipe with apple cider and orange gravy does just that! Take the humble pork shoulder and braise it nicely in your Dutch oven with a bit of good apple cider and fresh navel orange slices. And for me, the added earthy Mediterranean flavors from cardamom seeds, bay leaf, ground cloves, and hot paprika, take the unassuming pork to a new level of delicious!
In fact this pork shoulder recipe will make your house AND neighborhood smell heavenly! Funny story. As I was nonchalantly making this braised pork shoulder, I looked at my phone briefly and saw that I was tagged in a facebook message on the neighborhood facebook page. The message, from my neighbor who lives one street behind me, read, “Suzy Karadsheh what are you cooking because it smells amazing!??!” I had to apologize to the NEIGHBORHOOD for filling the streets with the aroma of this braised pork shoulder with apple cider and orange gravy. It is that good! Go ahead and PIN it now.
I decided to forget about side dishes and just load my fall-apart pork on a hard-crust ciabatta; BEHOLD the ULTIMATE comfort sandwich!
Ready. Here is how it goes.
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Bring pork shoulder to room temperature. Chop one medium red onion, some celery, and garlic cloves. Set aside.
In a small bowl, mix together seasoned salt, ground black pepper, hot paprika and ground cloves. Coat pork shoulder generously on all sides with the spice rub you just mixed.
Heat one tbsp of olive oil in a 5-quart Dutch oven. Turn heat to medium-high and brown pork shoulder on all sides. Remove from heat and set aside momentarily. Once cooled enough to handle, coat pork shoulder with chopped garlic.
In the same Dutch oven, saute red onions and celery briefly. Add orange slices, bay leaf and cardamom seeds. Toss together on medium heat.
Raise heat back to medium-high. Add apple cider and let cook to reduce by half.
Return pork, now coated with chopped garlic, to Dutch oven carefully. Pour in beef broth and bring to a simmer.
Turn stove off, cover and transfer Dutch oven to the 375 degree F-heated oven.
Let cook in oven for one hour. Turn pork over, add more broth if needed, return to oven covered for another hour or more.
When done, pork should be fully cooked and tender. It should pull apart easily with a fork. Liquid will have turned into a nice slightly thick apple cider and orange gravy.
Now reach for your hard-crust bread and make a yummy fall-apart braised pork sandwich! I decided to add a little bean sprout and broccoli slaw on top. Enjoy!
Another popular sandwich in my house is grilled kofta on a pita! Can easily be made on an indoor grill as well.
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Braised pork shoulder recipe with apple cider and orange gravy. Makes the ultimate pork sandwich! Infused with Mediterranean spices, cider and orange.
- 2.5 lb pork shoulder
- 1/2 large navel orange, washed, sliced in 1/2-inch rounds
- 1 medium red onion, roughly chopped
- 1 rib celery, chopped into 1-inch pieces
- 4 garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 2 whole cardamom seeds
- 2 1/2 cup low-sodium beef or vegetable broth
- 1 cup apple cider
- Olive oil
- Spice rub:
- 1 1/2 tsp seasoned salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- 1/2 tsp hot paprika
- 1/4 tsp ground cloves
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- Bring pork shoulder to room temperature.
- Apply spice rub on all sides of pork shoulder.
- Heat one tbsp of olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Turn heat to medium-high and brown pork shoulder on all sides. Remove from heat and set aside momentarily.
- When cooled enough to handle, coat pork shoulder with chopped garlic.
- In the same Dutch oven, saute red onions and celery briefly. Add orange slices, bay leaf and cardamom seeds. Toss together on medium heat.
- Raise heat back to medium-high. Add apple cider and let cook to reduce by half.
- Now return pork to Dutch oven, and pour in beef or vegetable broth. Bring to a simmer.
- Turn stove off, cover and transfer Dutch oven to the 375 degree F-heated oven.
- Let cook in oven for one hour. Turn pork over, add more broth if needed, and return to oven covered for another hour or more.
- When done, pork shoulder should be fully cooked and tender. It should pull apart easily with a fork. Liquid will have turned into a nice slightly thick apple cider and orange gravy.
- You may serve this pork sandwiched in ciabatta or another hard-crust European bread of your choice. Enjoy!
You can easily double this recipe if you need to feed a larger crowd.
- Category: Sandwich
- Cuisine: Mediterranean
Keywords: braised pork sandwich, pork shoulder