Five-Spice Pork Shoulder with Green Onion Salsa

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Prep Time: 90 minutes
Cook Time: 90 minutes
Servings: 4 to 6

You’ll find many Chinese recipes for pork shoulder, whose rich meat is nicely offset by the combination of sweet, sour and salty ingredients common to the cuisine in many parts of the country. This richly marbled cut stands up beautifully to the dry-heat method of roasting, but requires a relatively low heat and long roasting time to become fork-tender.


  • 1 bone-in pork shoulder, 5 1/2 to 6 lb. (2.75 to 3 kg)
  • 2 tsp. five-spice powder
  • 3 garlic cloves, very finely minced or pressed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper

For the salsa:

  • 4 green onions, white and light green portions, minced
  • 4 tsp. rice vinegar
  • 4 tsp. medium-dry sherry
  • 4 tsp. Asian fish sauce
  • 2 tsp. minced fresh cilantro
  • 2 tsp. reduced-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tsp. Asian sesame oil
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice


Let the pork stand at room temperature for 1 to 1 1/2 hours.

Preheat an oven to 425°F (220°C).

In a small bowl, stir together the five-spice powder, garlic, 2 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. pepper. In a large shallow dish, rub the spice mixture all over the pork, then arrange the pork on a rack set over a roasting pan.

Transfer to the oven and roast for 45 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 350°F (180°C) and continue to roast until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat away from the bone registers 135°F (57°C) for medium, about 45 minutes longer, or until done to your liking. Let rest for about 30 minutes.

To prepare the salsa, in a medium bowl, stir together the green onions, vinegar, sherry, fish sauce, cilantro, soy sauce, sesame oil and lemon juice.

Cut the pork into thick slices. Arrange on a warmed serving platter, top with the salsa and serve immediately. Serves 4 to 6.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Year-Round Roasting (Weldon Owen, 2014)

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