Grilled pork roast with mustard and fresh herbs
Marinating boneless pork shoulder with Dijon mustard, garlic and a fresh herb mix adds extra depth to the smoky flavor of this grilled roast.
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Grilled Pork Roast with Mustard and Fresh Herbs
Serves 4 to 6
Terry Boyd is the author of Blue Kitchen, a Chicago-based food blog for home cooks. His simple, eclectic cooking focuses on fresh ingredients, big flavors and a cheerful willingness to borrow ideas and techniques from all over the world. A frequent contributor to the Chicago Sun-Times, his recipes have also appeared on the Bon Appétit and Saveur websites.
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2 tablespoons chopped fresh sage
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon olive oil
3/4 teaspoon salt (I used fine sea salt – see Kitchen Notes)
Freshly ground black pepper
3 to 4-pound boneless pork shoulder
Combine the herbs, garlic, mustard, olive oil, salt and pepper in a small bowl and mix thoroughly. Pat roast dry with paper towels. Score fat and any skin on pork in a crosshatch pattern. Rub the mustard herb mixture all over the roast, taking care to work it into the crosshatched slits. Wrap the roast tightly in plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours and preferably overnight.
About 1/2 hour before you’re ready to grill, remove the roast from the fridge to let it come to room temperature. Prepare your grill for indirect grilling. For a charcoal grill, divide hot coals evenly on two sides of the grill and place an aluminum foil drip pan in the middle. Place the roast fat/skin side up over the drip pan and cover the grill. For a two-burner gas grill, light one side and place the food on the other. On a three- or four-burner grill, light the outside or front and rear burners; cook the food in the center. If your grill doesn’t have a built-in drip pan, place a foil pan under the grate. (I’ve only cooked on charcoal grills, so if you’re using a gas grill, you undoubtedly know more than I do about regulating heat and such.)
Check the roast every 20 minutes or so to see how it’s doing. With a charcoal grill, you may need to add extra coals about 45 minutes to an hour into the cooking. Grill the roast until a quick-read thermometer inserted into the center of the roast registers 150 degrees F., about 1 to 1-1/4 hours (or longer – see Kitchen Notes). You an also roast the pork shoulder in the oven at 350 degrees F. Transfer roast to a platter, tent with foil and let it rest for 10 minutes or so. Slice and serve.
The finer points of salt. For early salting, fine salt will soak into the meat better. I used fine sea salt. Table salt will also work, but avoid coarse kosher salt. (Interestingly, though, for the quick variation I mentioned above for lamb shoulder chops, you do want coarse salt. That’s because you apply a lot, but then rinse it off before cooking; you don’t want too much salt to work its way into the meat.)
Cooking time variations. Normally, with a 3 to 4-pound roast, 1 to 1-1/4 hours should do the trick. But when grilling in cold weather (in the middle of Chicago winter, for instance), the grill can lose a lot of heat, making cooking times longer. Your quick-read thermometer is your friend. Use it.
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