Pork Pot Roast
Pork, Roast, Swabian

Pork Pot Roast (‘Schweineschmorbraten’)

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Last Updated on 6 months by Tim

There’s no doubt for me that pork makes for the juiciest and most succulent roasts. It’s divine to bite into a tender and perfectly marbled piece of pork covered in a rich gravy that holds all the glorious meat juices.

In today’s post, I’m going to show you how to prepare a Swabia-style pork pot roast. It’s made from the pork neck and super easy to prepare. The meat stays super juicy as it is braised in a closed Dutch oven inside its own gravy.

For me, pork roast is one of the most iconic dishes of German cuisine. This dish is really a must-try for anyone interested in experiencing the core flavors and what German cuisine is all about.

Chose the right cut of pork

It’s necessary that you chose a fatty cut of pork for this roast. The traditional and best cut for this style of pot roast is the pork neck which has a nice marbling and rather short fibers.

The size of the roast is up to your preference. I prepared this pork roast using a smaller piece of pork neck, about 2 pounds. This is enough to feed four people but if you love having leftovers or have a crowd to feed feel free to chose a bigger cut.

Marinated Pork Neck

The pork gets marinated before roasting to give it an additional flavor boost. The spices I use are black pepper, caraway seeds, cloves, and dried marjoram. Make sure to add plenty of salt to your spice mixture and let the marinated pork sit in the fridge for at least 3 hours. That way your piece of pork gets seasoned more thoroughly.

Don’t skip searing your pork roast

The pork roast should always be seared in your hot dutch oven before braising it. This will give it a beautiful dark crust, deepen the flavor, and give you some fond to deglaze later.

Make sure to use plenty of clarified butter for searing so that the pork doesn’t stick to the pan. You can drain any excess fat later. It’s better to use way too much than too little.

And don’t turn up the heat crazy high. Medium to medium-high is enough. You want to avoid burning your spices completely. Of course, it’s unavoidable that they will burn to some extent but if they turn completely black they will introduce an unpleasant bitterness into your sauce.

Searing the pork roast

Once your pork is seared, you can take it out and start sweating your aromatics for a few minutes. The aromatics used in this pork pot roast are nothing out of the ordinary: Onions, garlic, carrots, leek, and celeriac. The traditional soup vegetables which you hopefully always have on hand.

The pot then gets deglazed with white wine and beef broth. Once these are at a simmer you can add your pork back into the Dutch oven along with a bouquet garni.

Cook the pork roast to your preferred level of doneness

Cover with a lid and let the pork slowly braise in the oven until it reaches an internal temperature of 155 °F (68 °C). At this point, the pork is still very juicy and just barely cooked through. That’s optimal for a cut of fatty pork.

Pork roast inside the braising liquid

However, if you like your pork a little more pink or more well-done feel free to pull it out earlier or later. Everyone has his own preferences regarding the doneness of meat. And I won’t judge you on your preferred level of doneness.

The biggest mistake you can make after pulling your pork roast out of the oven is to slice it directly. Yes, it is tempting to just slice into it and eat it piping hot. But you will lose all the juice inside the pork that way. Wrap the roast in aluminum foil and let it rest for at least 10 minutes while you finish the sauce.

How to finish the sauce and serve your pork roast

The sauce needs to be strained through a fine-mesh sieve and thickened using potato starch. Add just a little bit of your potato starch slurry at a time so that you don’t accidentally end up with a rubbery gel. It’s better to make the sauce a little thinner than desired because it will get thicker once it cools down a little. You can also leave the starch out completely and eat the sauce unthickened if you prefer.

Slicing the juicy pork roast

Before serving, cut the pork roast into thick slices. That way your pork stays juicier and won’t cool down as quickly. I recommend serving it with some homemade spätzle or bread dumplings. Be generous with the sauce and offer some more on the table. It’s the best part of the meal. Besides the pork roast itself, of course.

In case you have any leftovers, you can either reheat and store them inside the leftover sauce or you can simply slice them very thinly deli-style and enjoy them with a slice of buttered bread the next day.

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