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Spoon with pork and polenta bake, white bowl and linen

Spicy braised pork with tomatoes and polenta crust

  • Author: Paula Montenegro
  • Prep Time: 20
  • Cook Time: 180
  • Total Time: 3 hours 20 minutes
  • Yield: 6 servings 1x
  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Braising
  • Cuisine: International


Very flavorful and great to have in the freezer.



For the pork:

  • 2 pounds pork shoulder (whole)
  • Olive oil
  • 1 large onion (I use red)
  • 4 green onions (white and light green parts)
  • 2 garlic cloves (sliced)
  • 1 or 2 chipotle chiles in adobo (adjust to your spicy taste)
  • 1-2 tablespoons tomato extract
  • 1 can tomatoes (chopped)
  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups or more if needed chicken stock
  • 3-4 tablespoons sugar (adjust to your taste)
  • 3-4 tablespoons sour cream (optional)

For the polenta crust:

  • 2 cups 350g instant polenta
  • 2/3 cup 100g all purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 6 eggs
  • 4 tablespoons butter (melted)


For the pork:

  1. Turn the oven at about 200ºF / 90ºC (low).
  2. Put a few tablespoons olive oil in an sturdy pan or skillet apt for the oven (I use enameled or stainless steel), set over high heat and sear the pork on all sides. It will take about five minutes.
  3. Turn the heat down to low, add onions and garlic and brown a bit without burning. Turn the heat off.
  4. Add minced chipotles, tomato extract, seeds, canned tomatoes and broth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Cover with a tight lid or with aluminum foil and cook in the low oven for 2 to 3 hours, depending on the size of the pork.
  6. Check it once or twice, turn it if necessary, and take it out when the meat can be effortlessly cut with a fork and the liquid is almost consumed.
  7. Separate the meat in bites with two forks.
  8. To the sauce add the sour cream (if using).
  9. You can serve it like this with rice or regular polenta, or make the polenta crust.

For the polenta crust:

  1. Turn the oven to 375ºF / 190ºC.
  2. Put the shredded pork meat with the sauce in an oven ceramic or stainless steel dish with high sides, or use individual oven proof bowls.
  3. In a bowl mix eggs, milk and butter.
  4. In another large bowl mix flour and polenta. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  5. Add egg mixture to the flour mixture and mix with a spatula or fork until you have a thick mixture.
  6. Spread by tablespoons over the pork mixture and bake for about 30 minutes, until the top is cracked, puffed and golden.


You can adjust the recipe to your taste regarding spiciness.

The sour cream adds a nice touch, but you can omit it.

Keywords: braised pork with polenta