I'm not a big pork eater. I never buy pork chops or pork tenderloin or pork roasts. I buy chicken sausages. I do home-smoke ribs occasionally, and I can't pass up good country ham, but other than that, pork is not really on my radar when planning a menu.
But, something about the following recipe piqued my interest. It may be that I'm a sucker for just about anything braised, and I can only eat so much beef and chicken. Whatever the inspiration, it was a welcome addition to the winter repertoire. I'm especially looking forward to leftovers, as it's one of those dishes that will only improve on reheating. So, if you have the foresight to make it a day or two ahead, you will be optimally rewarded.
Lynne Rossetto Kasper's Braised Pork with Three Peppers
extra virgin olive oil
1 each large sweet red and yellow peppers, cored, seeded, and cut into 2-inch pieces
2 large Italian frying peppers (or more sweet red pepper), cored, seeded, and cut into 2-inch pieces
2 to 3 large medium-hot fresh chilies, seeded and cut into 2-inch pieces
salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 3/4 to 3 pounds boned pork shoulder (if possible, hormone-and-antibiotic-free), trimmed of fat and cut into 2-inch chunks
leaves from 4 6-inch branches fresh rosemary
1/2 medium onion
3 large garlic cloves
3 oil-packed anchovy fillets
3 bay leaves
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup water
4 whole canned tomatoes, drained
1. Lightly film a 12-inch skillet with olive oil. Set over medium-high heat. Add all the peppers with a little salt and pepper. Toss just to lightly sear them, about 2 minutes. Remove them from the pan, leaving the oil behind, and add a little more oil. Once it is hot, add the pork, sprinkle with a little salt and pepper, and brown well on all sides, adjusting the heat so the glaze at the bottom of the pan doesn't burn, about 10 minutes.
2. While the pork browns, chop together the rosemary, onion, garlic, and anchovies into 1/4-inch pieces. Once the pork's half-browned, add the bay leaves. After 1 to 2 minutes more blend in the chopped mixture and finish browning the pork over medium heat, stirring to keep the garlic from burning. The onion should be golden brown.
3. Pour in the vinegar. Simmer it down to nothing while scraping up all the glaze from the bottom of the pan. Add the water, tomatoes, and the peppers; adjust the heat so the liquid bubbles slowly, cover, and cook 50 minutes, or until the pork is tender, stirring occasionally. Taste sauce for seasoning. Serve right away with polenta, or cool. refrigerate overnight, and reheat to bubbling before serving.
From The Italian Country Table - Home Cooking From Italy's Farmhouse Kitchens