1 boneless beef shoulder, 3 1/2-4 lb. (1.75-2 kg.), trimmed of excess fat
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3 T unsalted butter
1 T olive oil
25 fresh sage leaves, coarsely chopped
1 onion, julienned
4 cups whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
3 bay leaves
1 lemon zest, removed in wide strips with a vegetable peeler
1 t fresh lemon juice
1. Remove the beef shoulder from the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature for 1-1 1/2 hours.
2. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
3. Season the roast generously all over with salt and pepper. In a Dutch oven or other large, ovenproof pot over medium-high heat, melt 1 tablespoon of the butter with the oil. Add the beef, fat side down, and sear for 3-4 minutes. Repeat to brown all sides, about 15 minutes total. Adjust the heat level so that the meat sizzles actively but does not scorch. Transfer the beef to a platter and pour off the fat from the pan.
4. Return the pot to medium heat and melt the remaining 2 tablespoons butter. Add the onions and sauté until translucent, without adding much color. Add the sage leaves. Cook for 1 minute. Stirring constantly, slowly pour in the milk and cream. Return the beef to the pot, fat side up, and add the bay leaves, lemon zest and 1 teaspoon salt. Season generously with fresh cracked pepper. When the liquid begins to steam, partially cover the pot and transfer to the oven.
5. Cook the beef, turning it every 30 minutes, for 2 hours. Uncover and continue to cook until very tender, 30-60 more, again turning after 30 minutes if cooking for longer than 30 minutes more.. Transfer the pork to a platter and let the pan sauce settle. Regardless of time, the true test of doneness is that the beef is “spoon tender”
6. With a slotted spoon, remove the curds from the sauce, leaving behind the fat, and transfer to a fine-mesh sieve set over a small saucepan.
7. Push the curds through the sieve to make a smooth, creamy sauce. Warm the sauce over low heat and stir in the lemon juice. Taste and adjust the seasoning. The sauce should be subtly tart from the lemon and slightly peppery, to cut the beefs richness. Put the roast on the platter and spoon the sauce and the aromatics over it, gently pull it apart and drizzle olive oil and the hazelnut pesto over it. Serves 6-8.
For Toasted Hazelnuts and Aromatics
4 oz crusty/chewy Italian or French bread, sliced 1/2-inch thick (113 grams)
3/4-1 cup mild olive oil
4 oz hazelnuts, toasted with skins removed
1/2 t orange zest, finely grated
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest, finely grated
2 cloves garlic
12 mint leaves, chopped
Kosher salt, to taste
1. Heat the olive oil in a shallow pan over medium-low heat. Test the temperature with the edge of the bread (it should barely sizzle on contact). Place the bread in the pan and reduce heat. Fry the bread slices until it is deep golden in color, about 2 to 3 minutes, or until firm to touch. The bread may require further drying in a medium oven if chewy or doughy in spots.
2. Break the bread into coarse chunks.
3. Place bread chunks nuts and remaining ingredients in food processor, and pulse until all is the consistency of course bread crumbs.
While this recipe is not gluten-free, certain ingredients can be replaced or removed to achieve a gluten-free dish.