This recipe for Carne de Porco a Alentejana is for a delicious marinated and then braised pork shoulder stew. It is a recipe that has been passed down through three generations in one Portuguese family and it sounded so good that I had to ask for the recipe. To keep it authentic, I followed the handwritten notes to the letter and I was not disappointed with the results. The combination of fried potatoes, braised pork and steamed clams is delicious. Don’t forget to drizzle some of that delectable sauce from the pork over the dish before serving!
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Delicious, Fall-Winter, Family Reunion, Special Dinner
Degree of Difficulty
1 1/2lbsstewing porkor pork shoulder cut into small cubes
1cupwhite wine or enough to barely cover the pork
2mediumwhite potatoespeeled and cubed, about the same size as the pork
canola oil for deep frying
2lbslittle neck clams
3-4sprigsfresh coriander leavesfor garnish
Gather all the ingredients before starting the recipe.
Add pork to a large mixing bowl and season with kosher salt, paprika and cayenne pepper. Toss to combine.
Add garlic cloves, wine and bay leaves, stir and then cover with cling wrap and refrigerate for at least 24 hours and up to 3 days. Mix the pork two or three times during this period.
Drain marinade from pork, reserving the marinade.
Heat vegetable oil in sauté pan or a deep sided skillet for 1-2 minutes.
Add the marinated pork and sear each piece on all sides.
After searing the pork, add the reserved marinade, including the garlic and the bay leaves, stir scraping up any brown bits from the pan, then reduce heat to medium or medium low. Taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary. Cover and cook for 30-45 minutes or until the pork is tender. Keep warm over low heat until the potatoes and the clams are done.
When the pork is done, peel and dice potatoes, about the same size as the pork.
Pour enough canola oil into a deep thick bottomed pot to come up halfway to the sides of the pan. Heat the oil on medium high heat for 3-4 minutes or until a cube of bread dropped in the oil starts to sizzle right away and turns golden. Remove the cube of bread.
Gently lower the potatoes into the hot oil and fry until the potatoes turn a golden color. Remove to a paper towel and season with kosher salt.
While the potatoes are cooking, rinse the clams in 2 or 3 changes of cold water, or until the water runs clear.
Add about an inch of water to the bottom of a medium sized sauté pan or skillet with deep sides and bring the water to a boil. Add the clams all at once, reduce heat to medium, and cover the pan with a lid. Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until the clams open. Remove from heat and keep covered until ready to add to the finished dish.
Layer fried potatoes in the bottom of a deep sided serving dish. Top the potatoes with the braised pork and the steamed clams and drizzle pan juices from the pork over the top and toss very gently to combine.
This dish is sometimes served with giardiniera, which a mix of pickled vegetables. I served it on the side and let everyone help themselves. It adds a bit of contrast to the dish.