In this dish, our braising sauce made with Mission figs and port gives boneless pork shoulder a complex character with minimal effort. We’ve also included dried figs to add their characteristic flavor and texture, but you can omit them if you like.
Fig and Port Braised Pork
3 lb. (1.5 kg) boneless pork shoulder, cut into 2-inch (5-cm) cubes
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 Tbs. vegetable oil
1 jar (24.5 oz./695 g) fig port braising sauce
1 cup dried figs, halved lengthwise
Cooked polenta or mashed potatoes for serving
Season the pork with salt and pepper.
If using an oven, preheat to 350°F (180°C).
In a large fry pan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, warm the oil until just smoking. Working in batches, brown the pork on all sides, 8 to 10 minutes per batch.
If using a slow cooker, transfer the pork to the insert and add the braising sauce. Cover and cook on high according to the manufacturer’s instructions until the meat is fork-tender, about 3 hours, stirring in the figs about 30 minutes before the pork is done.
If using an oven, return all the pork to the pot, add the braising sauce and 1/2 cup (125 ml) water, and bring to a simmer. Cover the pot tightly with aluminum foil, then cover with the lid. Transfer to the over and cook until the pork is fork-tender, 2 to 3 hours, stirring in the figs about 30 minutes before the pork is done.
To serve, skim the fat off the sauce and spoon the pork and sauce over polenta in individual bowls. Serves 6 to 8.
Williams-Sonoma Test Kitchen