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Cranberry-Balsamic Glazed Pork Rack with Fennel, Apples, and Pears

Photo: Tara Donne; Styling: Heather Chadduck Hillegas

Hands-on time 45 mins
Total time 2 hrs, 15 mins
Yield

Makes 8 servings

This deeply flavorful glaze can be made up to 1 day ahead of time.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 8 ounces fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 6 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dried crushed red pepper
  • 12 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 12 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 10 (1-inch) orange zest strips
  • 1 (6-pound) bone-in pork rib roast (Ask your butcher for an 8-bone rack from the shoulder end, Frenched.)
  • 7 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup canola oil, divided
  • 2 small heads radicchio, quartered
  • 1 fennel bulb, cored and quartered
  • 1 Honeycrisp apple, halved vertically
  • 1 Bosc pear, halved vertically
  • Garnish: fresh sage sprigs

How to Make It

  1. Combine first 5 ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook 16 minutes or until mixture thickens slightly. Remove from heat; stir in vanilla and 2 teaspoons black pepper.

  2. Combine olive oil and next 4 ingredients in a bowl. Place pork on a jelly-roll pan; rub with marinade. Refrigerate 6 hours or overnight. Remove pork from refrigerator, and let stand at room temperature 1 hour before cooking. Brush off marinade; sprinkle with 2 tablespoons salt and 1 tablespoon pepper.

  3. Preheat oven to 350°. Heat 6 tablespoons canola oil in a large heavy-bottomed roasting pan over medium heat. Place pork, fat side down, in pan; cook 18 minutes, turning to brown all sides. Transfer pork to a plate, and wrap exposed bones with aluminum foil. Pour off fat from pan.

  4. Add remaining 2 tablespoons canola oil to roasting pan. Add radicchio and fennel, cut sides down, to pan; cook 8 minutes, turning to brown all cut sides. Remove from pan. Return pork to pan, fat side up.

  5. Roast pork 1 hour or until interior registers 115° when tested with a thermometer. Remove pan from oven. Arrange fruit and vegetables around roast; sprinkle vegetables with remaining 1 teaspoon salt. Brush top of roast with half of cranberry mixture, and return pan to oven; roast 20 more minutes or until interior registers 140° when tested with a thermometer. Remove pan from oven.

  6. Transfer roast to a large plate; remove foil from bones. Let rest 10 minutes. Arrange vegetables and fruit on a large platter; place roast on platter. Pour any accumulated juices from plate into remaining cranberry mixture. Brush pork with 1/2 cup cranberry mixture. Serve pork roast, vegetables, and fruit with remaining cranberry mixture. Garnish, if desired.