Thursday, 22 August 2013

On pulling pork

Everywhere I turn these days someone's talking about pulled pork and I have had NO IDEA about what they speak of. 

Pulled pork?? Almost sounds rude, doesn't it? Rude and tasty. Then this week, a friend told me they were having for it dinner. They were cooking it themselves. At home. In a slowcooker. And I thought - I can do that. 

So I did and if I can do it, YOU can too.

You'll need a piece of pork shoulder. I got mine from the supermarket, vacuum sealed and ready to go. You'll also need a slowcooker/crockpot, at least 8 hours to cook it, brown sugar, onion, garlic, paprika, salt, pepper, cinnamon and barbecue sauce.

I turned to Google for tips on cooking the best pulled pork and nearly fainted from the amount of content on offer, so I'm going to save you the fainting and break it down like this - anything goes. There are some that swear you should brown it off in a fry pan first, others that say to use an oven, some say keep the fat off, some practically demand you cut it off, some use stock, some don't use seasoning at all. It's a 'whatever floats your boat' kind of dish.

I opted to dry rub it with a mix of brown sugar, paprika, cumin and salt. When I do it again [which I definitely will] I'll replace the cumin with cinnamon and add black pepper. I lay it on a bed of sliced raw onion and garlic on the bottom of the slowcooker and added maybe half a cup of water. Put the lid on, turned it on low and went back to Facebook did the housework.

About 8 hours later I gingerly took it out of the cooker, which was harder than I thought it would be due to it being so tender. I cut the fat off and discarded it and then, using two forks, pulled the pork apart. 

AHA - pulled pork! 

I drained the juices from the cooker into a bowl and returned the onion and garlic back into the cooker. I followed one of my Google tips and mixed some of the juices with barbecue sauce [I had the basic hotdog Fountain type, but it would be nice with something more fancy] and returned the shredded meat to the cooker with the sauce and mixed it all up with the onions and garlic.

It was amazing. So tender and tasty and SO MUCH OF IT [had some on a sandwich with shredded lettuce and mayo today for lunch] I served it with steamed greens and crusty bread but to be honest I think it needs something salady with it. My friend served it with coleslaw which is probably perfect.

So there you are. That's how you pull pork.

Are you a pork puller? Do you have a better recipe than my hotch potch and, if so, will you share?

1 comment:

  1. We have recently moved to the US and had never heard of it before coming here, but love it. every one here does it in a smoker to get a yummy smokey flavor, which we've learned to do and its worth it!