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Braised Pork Rillettes with Allagash Saison

When we learned we would have an opportunity to visit Chef Pierre Gignac of Ocean at the Cape Arundel Inn and Resort for a personal cooking class, and an opportunity to try a recipe he crafted with our Saison, we jumped at the chance and were inspired to repeat the recipe at home!


3 pounds boneless pork shoulder cut into 1 inch cubes

8 ounces pork fat of 8 slices of bacon cut into 1/2 inch pieces

3 tablespoons kosher salt

1 tablespoon fresh ground black pepper

1 medium size sweet onion, finely chopped

6 garlic cloves, crushed

4 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves removed

4 bay leaves

1 cup dry white wine

1 cup Allagash Saison

1/2 cup brandy or cognac

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F or slow cooker to low temp. Season the meat evenly with salt and pepper and transfer to a heavy pot or the slow cooker.

Add onions, garlic, and spices and stir to blend. Add wine, Allagash Saison, and brandy. Bring to a summer, cover with a lid, and braise in the oven 4 hours. If using a slow cooker, cover with lid and cook on low heat for 8-10 hours.

After cooking, remove from oven or turn off slow cooker. The meat should be very tender. Drain the braised pork mixture in a large sieve over a bowl, careful to remove all herbs and the bay leaves. Reserve the cooking liquid.

Transfer the pork into a bowl. Shred the meat into very small pieces with a fork. Add the braising liquid cup-by-cup and beat with a wooden spoon (or a hand mixer.) Mix until the mixture looks spreadable. Transfer into ramekins and chill for at least 2 hours before serving. Shape into quenelle (oval shape) with two spoons or serve from jar.

Serve with toasted baguette, mustard, and your favorite pickled vegetables. Cheers!

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