Cajun Pork Roast

This recipe originates from Paul Prudhomme, who claims it to be his favorite family dish and loves to eat it with homemade oyster dressing. We think it's absolutely phenomenal, but the recipe below has reduced the three types of pepper (white, black, and cayenne) to correspond to the somewhat less spicy version we served at the Mardi Gras party. Additionally, for the party, we served it in a pork au jus (pan juices), though we usually make the pan juices into a gravy at home to serve on top of homemade mashed potatoes. If serving the roast au jus, you might try eating it with assorted oven-roasted vegetables (potatoes, carrots, turnips, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, or whatever else you like). Feel free to double the black, white, and red peppers to really spice up the taste buds. We sometimes even substitute chopped fresh hot jalapeño chile peppers for the bell pepper when we want to go to chilehead nirvana!

Seasoning mix

1 t black pepper
1½ t salt
½ t ground white pepper
½ t cayenne red pepper
1 t sweet paprika
1 t dried thyme
½ t dry mustard


3 T butter
1 T pork lard or rendered chicken fat (preferred), or substitute vegetable oil
1½ c chopped onions
1 c chopped celery
½ c chopped bell pepper
1 T minced fresh garlic
4 lb boneless pork loin
3 c homemade pork stock (made from roasted neck bones), or substitute good chicken stock (if you absolutely have no stock, use water, but the flavor will not be as intense)
Salt & pepper, to taste


Combine all ingredients for seasoning mix; set aside. In a large sauté pan, heat butter and lard over medium to medium-high heat until melted. Add the vegetables (onions, celery, bell pepper, and garlic). Sauté for about 5-10 minutes until softened. Add reserved seasoning mix and sauté for 30 seconds or so, until fragrant. Set aside and let cool completely.

To prepare roast, first preheat oven to 275 degrees F.

You will be slathering the roast with the reserved, cooled spiced vegetable mixture. If roast is tied together with string, you can optionally clip the strings and separate the halves, spread mixture between the two layers, then re-tie. Slather cooled vegetable mixture all over the pork and place into a roasting pan. Try to pack the vegetable mixture onto and around the meat (including the bottom) without a great amount falling off into the pan. Roast in the oven at 275 degrees F for 2 1/2 hours. Then increase the oven temperature to 375 to 400 degrees F and let the roast brown a bit (approximately 20 minues). Remove from oven. Place the pork roast on a plate or carving board to sit for 20 minutes before cutting and serving. This will allow the juices to "settle" before cutting. Set the roasting pan aside to reserve the baked on bits for "gravy."

When ready to prepare au jus, place the roasting pan on top of the stove over a burner on medium-high heat. Add the stock and deglaze the pan. When meat juices and caramelized vegetables have been incorporated into the au jus, strain. You may carve the pork roast and serve in the au jus as at the party. Or, use the au jus to make gravy. A simple way is to mix together oil and flour (equal parts) to a paste. Add this mixture gradually, whisking over medium high heat until the desired thickness is reached. You may also make a roux (equal parts of vegetable oil and flour, cooked slowly until the color of milk chocolate) and then whisk this into the au jus in order to thicken to a gravy. Add more stock or water as necessary. Adjust seasonings. You can then slice roast and serve with juice or gravy. This is really good with homemade mashed potatoes!