Braised Pork with Saskatoon Pepita Salsa (gf)

Red Ox Inn, Indulgence 2019

“To make a dish that showcased saskatoon berries we chose to go the savoury route and prepared a braised smoky pork shoulder with saskatoon salsa and pickled saskatoons. We made our own tortilla chips using El Mercato tortillas so they would be a little thicker and not disintegrate after the first bite. To do this we cut the tortillas into 1/4s and fried them at 350ºF. To make the pork was a multiday process. For scaling this recipe we will use 500 g pork shoulder.”
Chef Dylan Prins

Pork Rub

½ c paprika
¼ c garlic powder
¼ c ground cumin
¼ c kosher salt
2 t cayenne pepper

Rub the spice mix into the pork, using your hands, being careful not to contaminate the remaining spice mix so any remainder can be saved for use later. Let sit overnight.

The following day we smoked the pork for 1 hour using applewood chips, then prepared our braise.

The Braise

1 20 oz can tomatoes
1 lg onion, chopped
1 c white wine
5 bay leaf
3 sprigs fresh thyme
chicken stock to cover

Braise at 300ºF until tender or 250ºF overnight.

After braising remove the pork and while warm give it a quick chop to help shred the meat. Remove the bay leaves and thyme, blend the remaining ingredients and use some of the liquid to dress the meat so it does not dry out. Season the meat to taste. The remaining liquid can be used as the start to a tasty tortilla soup.

The Salsa

½ onion
6 cloves garlic
3 T duck fat

Sweat over low heat.

5 tomatillos
1 tomato
1 serrano chile

Blister the skins on the grill and remove any stems.

1 dried ancho chile
1 dried guajillo chile
1 dried chipotle chile

Toast dried chiles in a pan.

2 c saskatoons

Pulse all ingredients in a blender or food processor until there is no large pieces but not so much that it is totally smooth. Adjust consistency with warm water and adjust seasoning with Sherry vinegar and salt.

Yield 1 L.

Pickled Saskatoons

¼ c lime juice
½ c Sherry vinegar
1 c saskatoons

Heat the liquid to a boil and pour over the saskatoons. Let sit in the fridge for a few days, stirring them occasionally to ensure even flavour penetration.

To Assemble
Load approximately 1½ oz pork onto a chip, followed by 2 t salsa. Garnish with 2 or 3 pickled saskatoons, toasted pumpkin seeds and cilantro leaves.