We often think of pork shoulder for long, slow braises, but it actually can thrive in a quick high-heat setting, too. Here we take bite-size cubes of ButcherBox pork shoulder, sauté them with chopped sweet fennel and carrots, then simmer it all in a punchy, peppery lemon-honey pan sauce. You’ll never look at pork shoulder the same way again. Enjoy it with brown rice or another starchy side to soak up that sauce.
- 1 tbsp finely chopped garlic divided
- 3 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds
- 1 tsp coarsely ground black pepper
- 1/4 tsp crushed chili flakes
- 1 1/2 pounds ButcherBox pork shoulder defrosted, pat dry thoroughly
- 3 tbsp all purpose flour
- 3 tbsp canola oil
- 1 small head fennel cored, roughly chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 1 bunch small carrots tops removed, carrots chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)
- Brown rice for serving
- In a small mixing bowl, whisk ½ cup water with the ½ of the garlic, honey, lemon juice, sesame seeds and 1 teaspoon black pepper, and chili flakes.
- Place the pork shoulder on a cutting board, cut into 1-inch chunks and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Sprinkle 2 teaspoons of salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper and the flour over the pork and toss well to coat each piece.
- In a large (12-inch) cast-iron or other heavy-bottom pan, heat the canola oil over medium-high heat. Once hot, add the pork and sauté until golden brown on all sides and an instant-read thermometer stuck into the thickest part of a few cubes is 135ºF, 10 to 12 minutes. Add the fennel, carrot and the other ½ of the garlic to the pan, season with salt, stir to combine and then cook, stirring, until the vegetables are crisp-tender, about 5 minutes.
- Reduce the heat to medium, pour in the honey-sesame mixture and bring to a simmer, scraping up any brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Cook, stirring, until the sauce has thickened and reduced by about ¼ cup.
- Serve hot with warm brown rice.