Oh baby, are you in for a treat! Clear your calendar for one day some weekend soon because this sumptuous Pork Shoulder Braciola with Ragù could be luxuriating in a gentle simmer all afternoon filling your home with tantalizing aromas. And it wouldn’t be right to cook an herby parmesan-stuffed pork shoulder roast recipe without making a Sunday gravy in the same pot to soak up every stray bit of flavor. Don’t fret, this embarrases that jarred “Ragù” that many of us grew up on.
We originally started with a recipe from Bon Appétit but then merged it with some aspects from a Giada De Laurentis ragù. We thought her sauce would add more depth of flavor with additional ingredients. Our recipe below incorporates all of those changes.
Off to a dubious beginning, our supermarket didn’t have any boneless shoulder. Not to be deterred, we got the butcher to remove the bone (at no extra cost), and he packaged it with the now boneless meat. Which turned the bad start into a positive because we added it to the Dutch oven so all of that yummy goodness got cooked into the red gravy.
I mentioned the heady aromas which were making my stomach growl in anticipation for hours, but poor Russ had a head cold and couldn’t smell anything. He kept asking me if it smelled good—luckily he was able to taste because the meal was DELICIOUS!
Although not necessary, you may want to serve with crusty bread to mop up the fabulous sauce. We served ours with a small side salad for an uptick in our daily intake of greens and veggies. Go ahead, you can totally nail this recipe some lazy, stay-at-home afternoon…
Pork Shoulder Braciola with Ragu
1 4-lb. piece skinless, boneless pork shoulder (Boston butt)
2 large eggs, beaten to blend
1 head of garlic, cloves separated, half finely chopped, half thinly sliced
½ cup panko (Japanese breadcrumbs)
⅓ cup chopped parsley
1 Tbsp. chopped rosemary
1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
½ tsp. crushed red pepper flakes, plus extra for the ragù
3 oz. Parmesan, coarsely grated, plus finely grated for serving
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 cup white wine
- 3″ Parmesan rind
2 28-oz. cans whole peeled tomatoes, gently mashed with the juices
1 lb. pasta (any shape)
- Preheat oven to 300°. Place pork shoulder, fat side down, on a cutting board with a short end facing you. Holding a long, sharp knife about 1″ above cutting board, make a shallow cut along the entire length of a long side of roast. Continue cutting deeper into the roast, lifting and unfurling meat with your free hand, until it lies flat (be careful not to cut all the way through). Season generously on both sides with salt.
- Mix eggs, chopped garlic, panko, parsley, rosemary, black pepper, red pepper flakes, and 3 ounces Parmesan in a medium bowl. Keeping fattier side of pork shoulder facing downward, smear filling all over top side. Roll up roast and tie closed in 3–4 places with kitchen twine.
- Heat oil in a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium-high. Sear pork roast until browned all over, 10–12 minutes total.
- Once all of the pork has been browned, reduce the heat to medium. Add the onions and the remaining 1/2 tablespoon kosher salt. Cook for about 8 minutes, stirring and scraping up any browned bits.
- Add the garlic and cook for another 2 or 3 minutes. Deglaze with the white wine and cook until reduced to nearly dry, about 6 minutes.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, Parmesan rind, chile flakes and the herb bundle and bring to a simmer. Return the pork to the pot.
- Make sure roast is turned fat side up (if there is one), cover pot, and transfer to oven. Roast until a skewer easily passes through meat (a thermometer inserted into the center should register 200–205°), 3-3 1/2 hours.
- Remove meat from pot onto platter, cover with foil, and let rest for 30 minutes.
- Transfer pork roast to a cutting board and remove kitchen twine. Slice pork 1″ thick.
- Simmer sauce gently to thicken, if desired. Taste ragù and season with salt if needed.
- Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente; drain.
- Spoon pasta into a serving dish and top with some ragù; toss to coat. Sprinkle with finely grated Parmesan. Transfer pork to a platter; spoon remaining ragù over.
NOTE: Pork can be stuffed and rolled 2 days before roasting; cover and chill. Pork can also be roasted 3 days ahead; let cool, then cover and chill. Reheat gently in sauce before serving.
Finely chop half of the garlic and thinly slice the other half.
Mix eggs, chopped garlic, panko, parsley, rosemary, black pepper, red pepper flakes, and 3 ounces Parmesan in a medium bowl.
Cut deep into the roast, lifting and unfurling meat with your free hand, until it lies flat (be careful not to cut all the way through).
Smear filling all over inside. Roll up roast.
Tie closed in 3–4 places with kitchen twine.
Sear on all sides to brown for about 12 minutes total.
Hand crush the canned tomatoes, leaving some good sized chunks.
Cook the onions for about 8 minutes, stirring and scraping up any browned bits.
Add the garlic and cook for a few minutes. Deglaze with the white wine and cook until reduced to nearly dry.
Add the crushed tomatoes, Parmesan rind, chile flakes and the herb bundle and bring to a simmer.
Return the pork (and bone) to the pot.
Roast until a skewer easily passes through meat, about 3 to 3 1/2 hours.
Remove meat from pot, cover with foil, and let rest for 30 minutes.
Remove bay leaves, parmesan rinds and herb bouquet. Gently reduce the sauce for about 15 minutes to thicken slightly.
After resting, transfer pork roast to a cutting board and remove kitchen twine. Slice pork 1″ thick.
Transfer sliced pork to a platter; spoon some ragù over meat.
Spoon pasta into a serving dish and top with some ragù; toss to coat. Sprinkle with finely grated Parmesan. Plate individual servings with some pasta, sliced meat, additional ragù and more grated parm if desired.