Are you looking for a delicious and easy-to-make meal that will impress your family and friends?
Look no further than a pork shoulder blade roast! This versatile cut of meat can be cooked in a variety of ways, from slow-roasting to smoking, and is perfect for feeding a crowd.
But with so many different methods out there, it can be hard to know where to start. In this article, we’ll break down the steps for cooking a pork shoulder blade roast, so you can create a mouth-watering meal that will have everyone asking for seconds.
So grab your apron and let’s get cooking!
How Do I Cook A Pork Shoulder Blade Roast?
There are several ways to cook a pork shoulder blade roast, but we’ll focus on three popular methods: slow-roasting, braising, and high-heat roasting.
Choosing The Right Pork Shoulder Blade Roast
When it comes to choosing the right pork shoulder blade roast, there are a few key things to keep in mind. First and foremost, look for meat that has a good amount of marbling and is pinkish-red in color. Avoid meat that is pale in color or has dark spots on the fat.
Next, consider the weight of the roast. A bone-in pork shoulder blade roast will typically weigh between six to nine pounds, while a boneless roast will range from four to six pounds. The size of the roast will depend on your needs, but keep in mind that larger cuts may take longer to cook.
It’s also important to pay attention to the fat content of the roast. Look for a good quantity of fat, which will help make preparing the meat for cooking easier. You can trim off any loose pieces of fat or skin before cooking, but large, thick sections should be trimmed down to about 1/4 to 1/2 inch in thickness.
Finally, consider how you plan to cook the roast. Slow-roasting and braising are great options for achieving tender, moist meat, while high-heat roasting can create a crispy exterior and juicy interior. Choose a method that suits your preferences and cooking style.
By keeping these factors in mind when selecting your pork shoulder blade roast, you’ll be well on your way to creating a delicious and satisfying meal.
Preparing The Pork Shoulder Blade Roast For Cooking
Before you start cooking your pork shoulder blade roast, there are a few things you need to do to prepare it.
First, remove the roast from the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour. This will help ensure that the meat cooks evenly.
Next, trim the thick layer of fat from the outside of the roast, but make sure to leave a thin layer as this will help the pork to baste as it cooks.
Once you’ve trimmed the fat, season the pork with salt, pepper, and any other flavors you like. The seasoning choices will depend on what you want for the end result. For example, if you’re making tacos, sprinkle it with cumin, chili powder, and oregano. If you want to use the pork for several different types of meals, keep it simple with just salt and pepper.
If you have the time, searing the pork heavily on all sides until golden brown will add a lot of flavor. Heat a little oil in a large skillet or your Dutch oven over medium-high heat to sear the pork.
If braising on the stove top, roasting in the oven, or cooking in a slow cooker, place the pork in the pan fat-side up. Add enough liquid to the bottom of the pot to come halfway up the pork. Use chicken or vegetable stock, beer or cider, vinegar, or apple juice for the most flavor.
Once you’ve prepared your pork shoulder blade roast according to your preferred method and seasoning, it’s time to start cooking!
Slow-Roasting A Pork Shoulder Blade Roast
Slow-roasting a pork shoulder blade roast is a great way to achieve tender, juicy meat with a crispy exterior. To begin, preheat your oven to 250°F and line a rimmed baking sheet with heavy duty aluminum foil. Place a wire rack inside the sheet and cover it with a piece of parchment paper.
Next, season your pork shoulder blade roast liberally with salt and pepper on all sides. Place it on the parchment paper and transfer it to the preheated oven. Roast the pork for about 8 hours, or until a knife or fork inserted into the side shows very little resistance when twisted.
Once the pork is fully cooked, remove it from the oven and tent it with foil. Let it rest at room temperature for at least 15 minutes, but up to 2 hours if needed.
While the pork is resting, increase your oven temperature to 500°F and allow it to preheat. Return the pork to the oven and roast it until the skin is blistered and puffed, rotating every 5 minutes for about 20 minutes total.
Remove the pork from the oven, tent it with foil again, and let it rest for an additional 15 minutes. Finally, serve by picking in the kitchen or bringing it to the table and letting guests pick meat and crispy skin themselves, dipping into sauce of their choice on the side.
Slow-roasting a pork shoulder blade roast requires patience, but the result is worth it. The low temperature allows the meat to cook slowly and evenly, resulting in tender meat that falls off the bone. The high-heat finish creates a crispy exterior that adds texture and flavor to each bite.
Smoking A Pork Shoulder Blade Roast
Smoking a pork shoulder blade roast is a delicious and flavorful way to cook this cut of meat. To start, remove the roast from the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature for about 30-45 minutes. Preheat your smoker to 225°F (105°C) and fill a baking dish with water and place it on the grate on one side of the smoker.
Next, prepare a spray bottle with apple juice and apple cider vinegar. Spritz the pork shoulder every hour during the first four hours of smoking, keeping the smoker temperature around 250-275°F (121-135°C). Check the internal temperature of the pork shoulder using a meat thermometer after four hours. It should be at least 145°F (63°C) at this point.
Completely spritz the pork shoulder one more time and carefully wrap it in aluminum foil or peach paper. Place it back into the smoker and lower the temperature to 225°F (105°C). Smoke for another four hours, but do not spritz during this stage of cooking. Check the internal temperature of the pork shoulder using a meat thermometer again, aiming for a range of 195-205°F (90-96°C) for amazing pulled pork.
Remove the pork from the smoker and let it rest for at least 20 minutes, up to two hours. Keep it wrapped up tight and consider adding it to a clean, empty cooler or your turned-off oven to keep it warm.
When smoking a pork shoulder blade roast, it’s important to note that sweet fruit woods like apple and cherry are perfect for pork, while stronger flavored woods like mesquite should be avoided as they can overpower the sweet flavor of the pork. You can also experiment by mixing different types of wood to create your own personal blend.
Remember that every time you lift the lid to take a temperature reading, you add fifteen to thirty minutes to the smoking time. To speed up the cooking process, you can double-wrap the pork shoulder in aluminum foil after four or five hours of smoking, but this will cause the crusty bark to soften from the moisture within the foil.
Serving And Enjoying Your Pork Shoulder Blade Roast
Once your pork shoulder blade roast is cooked to perfection, it’s time to enjoy it! This flavorful and tender meat can be used in a variety of ways, making it a versatile and delicious addition to any meal.
One classic way to serve pork shoulder blade roast is as pulled pork. Simply shred the meat with two forks and mix in your favorite BBQ sauce for a tangy and savory flavor. You can also add it to a sandwich or wrap with some coleslaw for a satisfying and filling meal.
Another option is to use the pork in a ragu or tomato-based sauce. This pairs well with pasta or polenta for a hearty and comforting meal.
For a unique twist, try braising the pork in beer or adding cranberry sauce for a sweet and tart flavor. You can also melt some butter over the top of the meat while it rests for added richness.
No matter how you choose to serve your pork shoulder blade roast, make sure to enjoy it with friends and family. This dish is perfect for casual entertaining or meal prep, as it can be frozen and reheated easily. So go ahead and experiment with different flavors and cooking methods to find your perfect recipe!