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The Sunday Gravy Experiment Part 5- Simmered Pork Roast

Well, on Day 4 of our Sunday Gravy project, I cooked Sausage and Meatballs in the sauce and served the results with pasta. Our sauce, now a genuine ‘gravy’, has been resting for a number of days now and, on Day 10, it is time for a new addition.  I actually took the sauce out the other day to heat it up (a good step to keep it fresh), but it looked just fine so I decided it could wait in the fridge just a little longer.

Anyway, the next experiment will be to use the gravy to simmer the nice looking 3lb. pork shoulder roast you see above. My plan is to cook it slowly for several hours and then cut off a good size piece while the meat is still quite firm to use for sandwich cold-cuts. The remainder I will return to the pot and let it simmer until it is really well done and has given lots of nice flavor to the gravy. At that point (while it still retains some flavor of it’s own) I shall retrieve it and use it for some interesting pulled pork applications…

The first step is to brown the roast on all sides. The notion that doing this seals in the juices and flavor is a bit of a culinary myth (and would be a bit counter-productive in this experiment, were it not), but rather the browning allows different flavors to develop.

Afterwards, I drained off the fat and de-glazed the pan. What is left will be added to the sauce.

After the sausage and meatball feast, the gravy was a little depleted, so I have pureed a large can of diced tomatoes to replenish it. I am also adding a couple of dried shiitake mushrooms and some leftover basil stalks to add a little depth of flavor as well. I’ll just add these whole and fish them out of the gravy later after they have given up their essences.

Here is the roast and additional flavorings in the pot just before the additional tomato puree was added. Rather than simmer this on the stovetop, I am going to put the gravy pot, with a cover, into a 300 degree oven. This will achieve the same result and save me having to monitor frequently to make sure the tomato sauce isn’t cooking onto the bottom of the pot.

Using the oven took a little longer than I expected as it took quite a while for the gravy to come up to a simmer. In any event, it took about three and a half ours before I thought the roast was ready to section, rather than the two I anticipated.

In the above picture, I have cut the roast into three pieces. The one in the foreground is the one I am saving for cold-cuts (although I may put some of it to other uses). The other two pieces will be returned to the pot for a further simmering. By the way, I removed the basil stems at this time as they have done their job, but I left the mushrooms in the mix…

After another three hours or so, I retrieved the remaining pieces of pork. As you can see, the meat has lost some volume, as one would expect, but it is delightfully tender and really tasty.

About fifteen minutes with a pair of forks reduced the meat to the shreds (or pulled-pork) you see here. There is about three cups or so, which is way more than enough for the pulled-sandwiches I want to try. I am thinking that I may use the rest to make samosas

This is the sauce after being poured into a fresh clean pot and cooled. Even cold it tastes delicious. I was surprised that there isn’t any fat congealed on the surface. While it was still hot, I skimmed off nearly a cup of the stuff but I anticipated that I would have left some behind.

Anyway… I am leaving town in a few days and will be gone almost two weeks except for a day or so in the middle. I won’t be cooking anything in the gravy during that time so I have dragooned my wife into bringing the stuff to a quick boil for a few minutes three or four times whilst I am away. In the meantime, I will be thinking about the next experiment in our project…


15 Comments Post a comment
  1. Wow…I wish I could come have dinner with you guys! That gravy must be spectacular by now! Yum yum!

    October 26, 2012
    • I’m hoping to test it tomorrow. My wife was re-heating it during my travels to keep it fresh.

      October 26, 2012
  2. your poor wife

    October 26, 2012
    • Actually, my wife was away but she would have enjoyed it 🙂

      October 26, 2012
      • no, I meant that she has to take up the ‘bring to a boil’ chores while you are gone

        October 26, 2012
  3. You have no idea how hungry this is making me.

    October 26, 2012
    • Alright! That’s what I aim for… I’ve made a few things with the result (posts to follow). I am right now in the middle of doing something interesting using the gravy… could be a flop but it looks good so far 🙂

      October 26, 2012
  4. Is amazing that that gravy is still alive and kinking, and how it kiks!! I loved this one, especially the last bit with the pulled pork, can’t wait for those somosas 😉
    How long can this gravy last without spoiling?

    October 27, 2012
    • Well… theoretically forever as long as you keep adding to it and reheating periodically. Practically, though? It will be interesting to see 🙂

      October 27, 2012
      • I just re-read my comment andis kind of weird…sorry 😉

        October 27, 2012
      • HA HA no …. I gathered you meant ‘kicking’ … but kinking sounds interesting too 🙂

        October 27, 2012

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Samosas with Pork | Sybaritica
  2. The Pulled-Pork Sandwich | Sybaritica
  3. The Sunday Gravy Experiment Part 6- Spicy Sausages | Sybaritica
  4. Sunday Gravy – The Tomato Sauce Base | Sybaritica

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