Milk-Braised Pork with Cheesy Grits

Milk-Braised Pork with Cheesy Grits
a contest winner!

2 pounds boneless pork shoulder roast
3/4 teaspoon onion powder
3/4 teaspoon garlic powder
3/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper, divided
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3/4 cup finely chopped Vidalia or other sweet onions
2 tablespoons minced garlic
2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth, plus additional if needed
1 cup milk
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tablespoon snippped fresh thyme
1/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1 recipe Cheesy Grits
Fresh sage

Trim fat from roast. In a small bowl, combine onion powder, garlic powder, smoked paprika and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Rub mixture over roast. Place roast in a shallow dish. Cover and chill at least 2 hours.
In a 4-quart Dutch oven, brown roast on all sides in hot oil over medium heat.
Remove the roast from the Dutch oven. Add onion and garlic. Cook and stir 30 seconds or until fragrant but not brown.
Add 2 cups chicken broth, 1 cup milk, and the orange juice to the Dutch oven, scraping any browned bits up from the bottom. Add the remaining 1/2 teaspoon black pepper, the thyme and cumin. Bring to boiling. Return pork roast to the Dutch oven.
Carefully cover the pot tightly with foil and a tightly fitting lid. Roast in a 325 degrees oven for 1 3/4 to 2 1/4-hours or until the pork roast is fork tender, adding chicken broth if needed to keep the roast half-submerged. Transfer roast to a shallow dish; keep warm.
Skim fat from cooking juices. Place the Dutch oven onto the stove top. Bring juices to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 15 to 20 minutes or until reduced by nearly half. (Meanwhile, make the Cheesy Grits.)
To serve, shred pork into large pieces with two forks. Moisten the pork with some of the pan sauce. Serve pork over Cheesy Grits, garnished with sage leaves; pass the extra sauce.

Cheesy Grits

2 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon seeded and minced* fresh serrano pepper
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 1/3 cups milk**
2 1/2 teaspoons snipped fresh rosemary
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 1/4 cups quick cooking grits
1 3/4 cups shredded Monterey Jack and cheddar cheese blend
4 teaspoons snipped fresh sage

In a large saucepan melt butter over low heat. Add serrano and garlic and cook 2 to 3 minutes or until tender.
Add chicken broth, milk, rosemary, and pepper. Bring just to a simmer over medium heat.
Add the grits in a steady stream; stirring constantly with a wooden spoon. Cook and stir 6 to 8 minutes or until the mixture thickens. Stir in cheese and snipped sage.