Friday, March 23, 2012

Pulled Pork, Meal 1

This week I wanted to make something that I could make into several, completely different meals using the same core ingredient. Also this week, I’ve been craving pulled pork. Perhaps because the weather has turned blissfully warm, the flip flops have been broken out, as well as the t-shirts, and the windows are open, has caused my BBQ cravings. While it’s crazy that it’s only March and the temps are this glorious, I’m not going to complain!
Back to the pulled pork. If I made the pork, what meals could I make from it, I wondered? I decided to start with the obvious, sandwiches of course! And they have to be topped with crunchy slaw, piled on soft, chewy rolls, and slathered in sauce.

I will posting the subsequent recipes in the week to come, so stayed tune!

When I was looking for the pulled pork recipe I wanted something that would provide flavor, but not be over powering. In order to make a core ingredient that would span several meals, but not be boring, it needs to be tasty, yet simple. This recipe fit the bill. It won me over with the limited about of ingredients, the spiciness from the chipotles, and that it wasn’t overly anything.  

Pulled Pork:
Serves 6-8

5 lb. Pork shoulder, butt, Boston butt
2 cans Dr. Pepper (I used root beer because that’s what I had)
1 can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 onion, cut into wedges

This can be made in the oven, in a pot that has a lid, on 275F. This can be made in a crock pot on low. Take the pork shoulder/butt and trim away all excess fat. Now, I didn’t feel like doing this at the time of starting and I should have taken the 5 minutes to trim the extra fat off. After the pork had cooked and I was shredding away the extra fat became much more difficult to remove. Trust me, take the 5 minutes and trim the fat people! Anyways, trim the fat and liberally salt and pepper the entire shoulder/butt. Layer the onions on the bottom. Place the shoulder/butt on top of onion layer. Pour the Dr. Pepper or whatever dark soda you choose, the chipotle peppers, and the brown sugar. Put the lid on and sit back. Wait, patiently for 6 hours. If you feel the need check on the pork, prod it with a fork. If the meat doesn’t pull away easily, it isn’t done! Put the lid back on and walk away! Come back later! It will take around 6 hours, more if you have a larger shoulder/butt. Once the pork is done, remove it from the liquid onto a plate or cutting board, and shred it using 2 forks. Devour!

For the slaw recipe, again, I wanted something easy. I went to one of my favorite cooking blogs, smitten kitchen, and browsed her list of recipes looking for the perfect slaw accompaniment. This recipe won out because not only did I have all the ingredients on hand (and how often does that happen!?! NEVER I tell you!) but I had also just that day purchased a large package of green onions that needed to be used. It was fate I tell you!
Green Onion Slaw:
½ cup olive oil
¼ cup red wine vinegar
1cup chopped green onions
2 tbsp mayonnaise
Salt, pepper
1 head purple cabbage, chopped or shredded
1 small onion, thinly sliced
Place first 5 ingredients into a blender and blend until smooth. I took the easy way out and used a bag of store bought pre-shredded cabbage with carrots. I highly recommend this way! Pour the dressing over the cabbage and mix well. Remember, slaw tastes better when it gets to sit for a while, so if you can, make it ahead of time.

Does anyone else use kitchen scissors to "chop" their green onions? Nope, just me? Thought so, well I recommend that the next time you need to chop those pesky little stalks to use scissors! I use scissors
for chives too, it's just so much easier. Please take my word for it and give it a go!  
                 My sandwich, in all its glory! It was oh so good!
Looking forward to my next meal with pulled pork!

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