I first cooked this at the Aldeburgh Cookery School on their Italian Classics course a few years ago and loved it. I lost the recipe and then came across a similar one in the Rick Stein’s Venice book for a loin joint so I adapted it to use with some pork shoulders steaks I found in the freezer in a lockdown clearout. The sauce is thick and creamy and delicately flavoured with lemon, fennel and sage – served with new potatoes and green vegetables, it’s simple to make and simply delicious.
- 4 pork shoulder steaks at least 2cm thick. They need to be quite thick so they don’t dry out when they cook in the oven.
- 30g butter plus 1 tbsp olive oil
- Zest of a lemon
- Juice of half a lemon
- 6 sage leaves, finely chopped
- 6 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1 dessertspoon of fennel seeds, lightly crushed
- 500ml milk
- Salt and black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 140°C.
- Season the pork with salt and pepper.
- Scald the milk in a separate pan by bringing it to a simmer and then set aside.
- In a large frying pan, melt the oil and butter and then brown the pork steaks on each side. Transfer them to a wide-based cast-iron casserole dish.
- Lightly cook the garlic in the remaining butter with the fennel seeds, sage and lemon zest.
- Pour in the milk and lemon juice, bring it up to the boil and then pour it over the pork.
- Cover with the casserole lid and cook in the oven for an hour. After an hour, the pork should be cooked through and the sauce may be quite runny and slightly curdled.
- Turn off the oven and pour off the liquid back into the frying pan and reduce over a high heat. Cover the pork so that it can rest whilst the sauce reduces. Check the sauce for seasoning and pour it back over the pork steaks.
- Serve with new potatoes and dark green vegetables such as broccoli.
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