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Pork Shoulder - With or Without a Bone?

Asked by LeeDWatkinson. Answered on 30th June 2011

Full question

I am making the Slow-Roasted Aromatic Shoulder of Pork from the Nigella Bites book (p211). Should I get the joint with or without the bone in it?

Our answer

The shoulder of pork in the recipe is one with the bone in (it weighs around 9 1/2 kg or 21 pounds). Unfortunately supermarkets are more likely to sell smaller boned and rolled pork shoulders so you may need to order the whole shoulder a few days in advance from your butcher, or from the meat counter at the supermarket.

Roasting pork or any other meat on the bone tends to add extra flavour, hence the old proverb of "the closer to the bone, the sweeter the meat". Also as the pork in this recipe spends most of its time skin-side down in the oven (during the low temperature cooking) the bone adds a slight element of protection to the outside of the meat, helping to keep it moist.

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