Via Carota’s Famous Braciole al Latte (Milk-Braised Pork Chops)
Redolent of fennel, rosemary, and garlic, this special-occasion main draws on an age-old cooking technique that most Americans overlook.
Cooking pork in milk keeps the meat from drying out and accentuates its mild sweetness. When the pan comes out of the oven, the chops are bathed in a highly seasoned, milky sauce. Special dishes often require planning ahead, and like most of our white and lean meat dishes at Via Carota, these pork chops are brined for two days before cooking.
Hearty eaters (and those who love leftovers) should double this recipe.
Featured in “The Magic of the Milk Braise,” by Ella Quittner.
For the brine:
- ½ cup kosher salt
- 3 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. black peppercorns
- 2 garlic heads, sliced in half crosswise
- ⅔ cup coarsely chopped fresh herbs, such as rosemary, thyme, or a combination
- 2 bone-in pork chops, about 2 in. thick
For the strutto:
- 4 oz. pancetta, in thick slices
- 4 oz. pork fat or fresh pork belly, trimmed
- 2 tsp. coarsely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
- ¾ tsp. kosher salt
- ½ tsp. ground lightly toasted fennel seeds
- 2 large garlic cloves
For the braciole:
- 1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 cup strutto (above)
- 4 large garlic cloves, smashed with the side of a knife
- 8 lacinato kale leaves, stems removed
- 1 tsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
- ¾ tsp. ground lightly toasted fennel seeds
- 1½ cups whole milk
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From Via Carota: A Celebration of Seasonal Cooking from the Beloved Greenwich Village Restaurant by Jody Williams and Rita Sodi, with Anna Kovel. Copyright © 2022 by Jody Williams and Rita Sodi. Excerpted by permission of Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Penguin Random House LLC. All rights reserved.