Pork braised with Nectarines or Plums, a Summer Treat
|Bowl by Maria Dondero, Southern Star Studio, Athens GA|
With nectarines becoming available in the summer, here’s one of my favorite dishes using pork with fruit, Pork braised with Nectarine. Plums, particularly dark colored prune plums in late summer, are also good. This delightful, and satisfyingly hearty, pork-fruit combination goes well with buttered noodles, potatoes or rice, set off with crisp-tender broccoli or a green salad. A chilled dry to off-dry rosé would be my choice of wine to have with this..
The recipe serves six.
2 pounds lean pork, tenderloin, “country ribs,” or butt preferred
3/4 teaspoon salt for meat, plus 1/2 teaspoon for cooking
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 small onion, finely diced
1/4 cup red wine
1 pound nectarines (or plums)
1/2 cup water, plus more as needed
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon oregano
Pinch of cayenne
Chopped or whole sprigs of parsley for garnish, optional
Sour cream, optional
Trim (but save) excess fat from pork. Cut meat in 1-1/4 inch chunks. Include bone if using “country ribs.” Season meat with salt and pepper. Wash nectarines or plums but do not peel them. Cut flesh off the pits and chop it finely by hand or in food processor.
Render (melt) fat trimmings in cooking pot. Discard cracklings. Pour off (but save) all except 3 tablespoons grease, or add olive or vegetable oil as needed. Fry pork, half at a time, in the pot, until just starting to brown, adding a little more grease if needed. Remove to a bowl with slotted spoon.
Fry diced onions in the pot, adding a little grease if needed, until softened and starting to brown. Add fried meat plus wine. Bring to a boil, stirring frequently. Add chopped nectarines or plums, water, 1/2 teaspoon salt, the paprika, oregano and cayenne.
Simmer covered, stirring occasionally and pushing meat down into the liquid, until meat is tender, adding a little water if sauce becomes dry (15-20 minutes for tenderloin up to 30-45 minutes for country ribs or butt). Taste during cooking and add salt as needed.
When serving, optionally garnish with chopped or whole sprigs of parsley. Top with a little sour cream, if desired.