Pork Rillettes


Serves about 5 cups
  • 2 teaspoons allspices berries
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
  • ½ teaspoon  coriander seeds
  • ¼ teaspoon  cinnamon
  • ¼ cup kosher salt
  • 3 pounds trimmed boneless pork butt, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 10 thyme sprigs
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • 1 quart rendered pork fat, melted (available from farmers’ market)
  • Baguette toasts and pickled apricots for serving


In a spice grinder, combine the allspice, peppercorns and coriander and grind to a powder; stir in the cinnamon and ¼ cup of salt. In a larger bowl, toss the pork with the spice blend until coated. Add the thyme and garlic and knead the garlic into the meat. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Bring the pork to room temperature. Add the melted pork fat to a slow cooker with the pork and seasonings. Cover partially and cook over low heat until the meat is very tender, 4 hours or up to 6 hours. Let cool slightly, then, using a slotted spoon, transfer the pork and garlic to a large bowl; discard the thyme. Mash the garlic and shredded pork, discarding any gristle. Stir in 1 cup of the fat and season with salt. Pack the meat into a ceramic bowl or individual crocks. Reheat the fat to barely look warm and ladle a ½ inch-thick layer on top of the pork. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Discard the remaining fat or save it for another use. Serve the rillettes with toasts and the pickled apricots. Note: The rillettes can be refrigerated for up to 1 month. Keep the meat covered with a layer of fat. Rich pork rillettes will pair well with a strong whiskey-based cocktail, like an old-fashioned. The disk would also be a nice match for wines that have good tannins to balance out the fat. Try a Cahors from the Southwest of France.