– One 4-pound boneless pork shoulder or one 4 1/2-pound bone-in pork shoulder
– Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
– 2 tablespoons canola oil
– 1 large yellow onion, chopped
– 4 cloves garlic, minced
– 1 bunch fresh thyme
– 2 cups low-sodium chicken stock
– 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
– One 3-pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks
– 3 tablespoons finely chopped fresh sage leaves, plus whole sprigs for garnish
– 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
– 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Preheat oven to 250 degrees. Pat pork dry with paper towels and season with 2 1/2 teaspoons salt and 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper. In a large dutch oven, heat canola oil over medium-high heat. Add pork shoulder and brown on all sides, about 8-10 minutes total. Transfer to a large plate.
Reduce heat to medium. Add onion and thyme sprigs to dutch oven and cook until onions are translucent, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook one minute more. Return pork to dutch oven fat side up, pour in chicken stock, and bring to a boil. Cover and place in oven for two hours.
Turn pork over, recover and cook for 2 hours more. Raise heat to 400 degrees. Brush pork with 1/4 cup of the maple syrup and return to oven uncovered for 15 minutes. Remove pork from dutch oven and place on a platter. Brush with remaining syrup and tent with foil to keep warm.
Place butternut squash on a large sheet pan, sprinkle with chopped sage, 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt and 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and toss to coat. Place in 400 degree oven and roast for 30-35 minutes until tender and lightly golden, stirring once or twice during roasting time.
While squash is roasting, place a sieve over a saucepan and pour pan juices through to remove solids. Skim fat from top with a spoon, discarding fat. Bring juices to a boil, then simmer until reduced by half. Stir in lemon juice. Test for seasoning, adding more salt and pepper if needed.
Slice pork and serve with butternut squash and pan juices. Garnish platter with sprigs of sage, if desired.