Miso-Crusted Pork Roast with Apples


Spike Gjerde, the James Beard Award–winning chef at restaurants like A Rake’s Progress in Washington, D.C., and Woodberry Kitchen in Baltimore, approaches local sourcing with religious fervor. He forgoes olive oil and lemons, using locally grown and pressed oils and vinegars in their place. His team dries mint, lavender, peaches, and cherries—and even makes garlic powder. He refuses to buy from distributors, even when they buy from local growers, because he wants every penny to go the farm. “A lot of people say, ‘Wow, this is harder than I thought.’ Then they just call [giant distributor] Sysco. But it’s why we’re doing it,” Gjerde says. “Our job is to get more value back to growers.” White Rose Miso makes a sweet potato miso that Gjerde loves to feature; substitute red miso if you can’t find it. This pork shoulder makes an impressive meal for very little effort. If your shoulder comes pre-tied, untie before rubbing with miso, then re-tie.

Miso Crusted Pork Roast With Apples
Photo: Greg DuPree
Active Time:
25 mins
Total Time:
11 hrs 50 mins


  • 1/2 cup sweet potato miso (such as White Rose Miso) or red miso

  • 3 tablespoons canola oil

  • 2 tablespoons granulated sugar

  • 1 teaspoon fish pepper flakes or crushed red pepper

  • 1 (2-pound) boneless pork shoulder

  • 2 medium yellow onions, cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick slices

  • 4 medium Pink Lady apples, cut into 3/4-inch wedges

  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

  • 1/4 teaspoon medium-grind sea salt

  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Stir together miso, oil, sugar, and fish pepper flakes in a small bowl. Rub mixture all over pork shoulder. Using kitchen twine, tie pork shoulder to shape into a uniform size. Wrap tightly in plastic wrap, and chill 8 hours or overnight.

  2. Preheat oven to 300°F. Arrange onion slices in a single layer in a large cast-iron skillet. Unwrap pork shoulder; place on top of onions. Tent pork with a piece of parchment paper; cover with aluminum foil. Roast 2 hours. Uncover pork, and roast until internal temperature registers 150°F, about 30 minutes.

  3. Toss apples with butter, salt, and black pepper. Scatter apples around pork, and roast until a thermometer inserted in pork registers 180°F and apples are crisp-tender, about 45 minutes, stirring apples halfway through roasting time. (Tent pork with another piece of foil if meat is getting too dark.) Transfer pork to a cutting board, and let rest 10 minutes before slicing. Serve pork with apples and onions.

Suggested Pairing

Savory, substantial Chilean red

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