Serves 8



1.5 kg Boston butt or pork shoulder roast



2l water

100g kosher salt

3 tbsp pink sea salt

4 tbsp granulated sugar

1 garlic clove, bruised

3 fresh thyme sprigs

3 juniper berries

2 strips of orange zest


spice rub

1½ tbsp fennel seeds

½ tsp black peppercorns

5 cloves

2 tsp cumin seeds

4 tsp English mustard powder

2 tsp ground allspice

1 tsp ground cinnamon

5 tbsp smoked paprika



2 yellow onions, diced

1 medium fennel, diced

2 tbsp large carrots

½ heads of garlic

25g fresh thyme sprigs

500ml chicken stock



Place half the water, the salts, and sugar in a deep saucepan. Bring to a boil to dissolve the salts and sugar. Add the remaining ingredients and water for the brine. Cool to room temperature, then add the pork. Cover and refrigerate for 2–3 days.

For the spice rub, place the fennel seeds, peppercorns, cloves, and cumin seeds in a dry skillet or frying pan over low heat. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes until fragrant. Add the remaining spices and cook, stirring for another 30 seconds. Turn onto a plate to cool, then grind in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle.

Remove the pork from the brine and pat dry. Sprinkle the spice mixture on a large piece of waxed (greaseproof) paper. Place the pork on top of the spices and rub them into the pork. Place the pork on a wire rack over a roasting pan. Cover loosely with foil and refrigerate for 24 hours. 

Soak apple wood chips in water for 15 minutes. Preheat the oven to 250°F/125°C/gas mark 1. Drain the wood chips in a colander. Place one-quarter of the wood chips in a roasting pan in the bottom third of the oven. Place the pork on the rack over the second roasting pan in the middle of the oven. Smoke for 2 hours, adding an additional quarter of the wood chips every half hour.

To braise the pork place all of the ingredients in a Dutch oven (casserole dish) then nestle the pork in the vegetables. Turn the oven temperature up to 325°F/160°C/gas mark 3. Cover and cook for 3 hours, until the pork is tender.

While the pork is still warm pull into shreds. Serve the shredded pork with the barbecue sauce.


Find out more about Thomas Keller on his chef's profile.

Eating With The Chefs by Per-Anders Jörgensen (£39.95), published by Phaidon

Photography: Per-Anders Jörgensen