Another Blast of Winter Headed Your Way? Make Blanquette de Porc

Blanquette de Porc, my take on Blanquette de Veau, a classic French dish. Photo by Richard Swearinger.

Whoa Nellie! It’s really coming down here in Amerique profonde. If it looks like snow’s coming your way, too, get to the supermarket and snap up the ingredients for my Blanquette de Porc. It’s a great braise—and if it’s just the two of you eating, lucky you: You’ll have some to see you through the next few nights, and leftovers freeze well.

This is one of my favorite recipes in the entire Bonne Femme Cookbook. Love this dish! (P.S.: It’s French, yet frugal—pork steak is inexpensive, but yields a dinner-party-worthy meal when you prep it this way.). P.S.: If you’re looking for a way to turn this into a dinner party, here’s the menu, along with make-ahead tips. Or, try some of the options I give with the recipe, below.

Now, on to the recipe! And please do not pass it up because it looks like it has a lot of ingredients and steps—it’s not a difficult recipe at all. You see, sometimes my recipes look long, because I tell you everything you need to know. For instance, instead of saying “Brown the pork,” I say, “Heat oil in a Dutch oven or a braiser over medium to medium-high heat. Cook the pork, half at a time, in hot oil for 5 to 7 minutes per batch, turning as needed to brown evenly.” The recipes are detailed, but never difficult.

Blanquette de Porc
Makes 6 servings

3 – 3 1/2 pounds pork blade steak (also called pork steak)

What to drink? I love either a steely, brisk Riesling or a white Burgundy with this one.

Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
2 cloves
1 large carrot, cut in half crosswise, then each half cut into quarters
1 celery rib including leaves, cut into 3-inch pieces
2 cups dry white wine
2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 bouquet garni*
4 carrots, cut into 1/4 x 2 inch sticks
1/2 16-ounce bag pearl onions
6 ounces fresh tiny button mushrooms (or use larger mushrooms, halved or quartered), stems
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup heavy cream
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
Hot parsleyed noodles or Any-Night Baked Rice, for serving

A Caesar Salad may not be strictly French, but the French love Caesar salads, and this would be a good starter to the meal.

1. Pat pork dry with paper towels. Cut pork off the bone into 1 to 2 inch pieces, trimming most of the fat away as you go. Season pork to taste with salt and pepper. Heat oil in a Dutch oven or a braiser over medium to medium-high heat. Cook the pork, half at a time, in hot oil for 5 to 7 minutes per batch, turning as needed to brown evenly. Drain any fat and return all meat to the pot. Stud two of the onion quarters with the cloves; add the onion quarters, carrot, celery, wine, broth, and bouquet garni to the pot. Bring to boiling; reduce heat, and simmer, covered, about 45 minutes or until pork is tender.

2. About 15 minutes toward the end of the cooking time for the pork, prepare the vegetables: In a large saucepan, bring the four cut carrots, the frozen pearl onions, and 1/4 cup lightly salted water to boiling; cover and simmer over medium heat for 4 minutes or until just tender. Drain and remove vegetables to a colander. In the same saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the butter over medium heat. Cook and stir the button mushrooms in the butter for 2 to 3 minutes or until tender and light brown. Return onions and carrots to the pot; set aside and cover to keep warm.

3. Drain the pork, reserving the cooking stock. Wipe out any residue in Dutch oven. Place pork in a bowl and cover with foil to keep warm; discard other solids, including the cloves and bouquet garni. Skim fat from the cooking stock; pour through a fine-mesh sieve back into the Dutch oven. Bring to boiling and boil until reduced to 2 cups.

If you’re entertaining, go for Crepes Belle Hélène, page 357 of the Bonne Femme Cookbook

4. Work the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and the flour together to form a paste. Drop into cooking stock, half a time, cooking and stirring with a wire whisk after each addition until well integrated. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly; cook and stir 1 minute more; add the cream, stirring with a wire whisk to combine.

5. Return meat to Dutch oven; add vegetables and lemon juice. Cook and stir very gently to heat through. Serve with hot parsleyed noodles or baked rice.

* Note: For a bouquet garni, using kitchen string tie together 3 sprigs fresh thyme, 5 sprigs parsley, and one bay leaf (or tuck these into an bouquet garni cheesecloth spice bag). Or use a purchased bouquet garni.


Print Friendly

Leave a Reply

You can use these HTML tags

<a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>




− 3 = two