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Spanish Pork & Fennel Stew with Saffron Rice


Fresh fennel adds a distinctive flavor to this savory pork stew. Yellow corn and red peppers are colorful additions. Saffron rice is a special addition.

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Rate this recipe 4.5/5 (11 Votes)


  • STEW:
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 3 pounds boneless blade (shoulder) pork roast, cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground
  • 1 head fennel, cored and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 large red bell pepper, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 cup dry sherry or apple juice
  • 6 cups water
  • 2 cups long-grain white rice
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed saffron threads
  • Fresh cilantro, chopped, for garnish


Servings 8
Preparation time 25mins
Cooking time 190mins
Adapted from


Step 1

Heat 2 tablespoons oil in large Dutch oven over medium-high heat.

Season pork with salt and pepper. In batches, without crowding (and adding more oil as needed) add pork and cook, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides, about 6 minutes per batch. Transfer to plate.

Add remaining oil to Dutch oven and heat. Add fennel, onion, bell pepper and garlic; cover. Cook, stirring occasionally with wooden spoon, until vegetables soften, about 8 minutes.

Add sherry; bring to a boil. Return pork with any juices to Dutch oven. Add enough cold water to just cover pork and vegetables; bring to a boil.

Reduce heat to low and cover. Simmer, stirring occasionally, until pork is very tender, about 1 1/2 hours.

Just before pork is tender, make saffron rice. Bring rice, water, salt and saffron to a boil in medium saucepan over high heat. Reduce heat to very low and cover. Simmer until tender, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand for 5 to 20 minutes, until liquid is absorbed. Fluff rice with fork.

Using a slotted spoon, transfer pork and vegetables to serving bowl and cover with aluminum foil.

Let cooking juices stand for 3 minutes, then skim off fat on surface. Boil over high heat, uncovered, until cooking liquid is reduced by half, about 10 minutes.

Season juices with salt and pepper. Pour over pork and vegetables. Spoon saffron rice into bowls. Top with stew, sprinkle with cilantro and serve.

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