PREP / TOTAL TIME: 5 hours plus overnight chilling SERVINGS: 6
4 pounds boneless pork shoulder, tied
Salt and freshly ground pepper
7 tablespoons vegetable oil
6 celery ribs, coarsely chopped
2 carrots, coarsely chopped
3 large onions, coarsely chopped
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 cup dry red wine
6 cups chicken stock or broth
1 cup dried sour cherries
2 large fennel bulbs, thinly sliced
2 large leeks, white and pale green parts, sliced crosswise 1/2 inch thick
1-1/2 cups heavy cream
1/4 cup grated young pecorino cheese
1/4 cup chives, cut in 1/2-inch lengths
1 . Preheat the oven to 350°. Season the pork with salt and pepper. In a large Dutch oven, brown the pork in 2 tablespoons of the oil. Remove the pork; pour off the fat. Add 2 tablespoons of the oil to the pot. Add the celery, carrots and 2 onions and cook over moderate heat until golden, 15 minutes. Add the tomato paste, wine and stock; bring to a boil. Add the pork and cherries, cover and braise in the oven for 4 hours. Cool. Refrigerate overnight.
2 . Skim the fat from the liquid and remove the pork. Boil the gravy until reduced to 1 1/2 cups, 25 minutes. Strain the gravy into a saucepan and season with salt and pepper. Untie the pork; slice into 6 medallions.
3 . In a skillet, mix 2 tablespoons of the oil with the fennel, leeks and remaining onion. Cover and cook over moderate heat until softened, 7 minutes. Add the cream and simmer until thickened, 10 minutes. Add the cheese and chives, and season with salt and pepper.
4 . In nonstick skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the pork and brown well. Serve with the gravy and vegetables.
Suggested Pairing Tart cherry–scented, medium-bodied Chianti.