For you, pork may not be even remotely treacherous. For me, it’s a guilty pleasure. I grew up enjoying Chinese spare ribs in sweet, sticky garlic sauce. Bacon was a treat; black forest ham, as pleasant as Black Forest cake. The Québécois cuisine at Au Petit Poucet was a family favorite. So even though I very rarely eat pork these days, it is fitting that that my son is urging me to prepare Pulled Pork. The meat I used is organic, and pork butt isn’t nearly as lewd as it sounds. It’s actually just a shoulder cut. If you’re not partial to pork, you can always pull a chicken leg instead.
- 1 1/2 t each whole coriander seed, whole cumin seed, black peppercorns, dry mustard powder, chili powder (Or 1 teaspoon of chili flakes, such as like Chile Pasilla Oaxaca)
- 2 t kosher salt
- 3 T coconut sugar (or dark brown sugar)
- 3 lb boneless pork shoulder (aka pork butt)
In a small frypan, over medium-low heat, toast coriander, cumin and peppercorns for 1 to 2 minutes. Grind toasted spices into a fine powder using a processor, a spice grinder or a mortar and pestle. (The Vitamix dry container was very effective.) Transfer to a bowl and mix with salt, mustard powder, chili powder and sugar.
Coat meat with spice rub and let it marinate in the rub for 1-2 hours at room temperature or up to 2 days in the refrigerator.
Place meat in a slow cooker and cook on high for 5-6 hours or in the oven in a baking pan at 250F for 3 to 4 hours or until meat is tender and the meat thermometer indicates 190F. Let meat rest for 20 minutes, then pull the still warm meat into pieces.
- 1 1/2 c ketchup
- 1/4 c each coconut (or dark brown) sugar, cider vinegar
- 2 T each molasses, Worcestershire sauce
- 2 garlic cloves, minced or grated
- 2 t sweet or hot paprika
- 1 t each black pepper, dry mustard powder
- pinch of cayenne
- hot sauce, to taste
Combine ingredients in a medium-sized pot. Simmer over medium-low heat for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Season with hot sauce. Add half of the BBQ sauce to the cooked, pulled meat and toss, adding more sauce as needed. Refrigerate extra sauce.
Simple Spicy Slaw
- 1/2 small head green cabbage, finely shredded
- 1/4 red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/2 jalapeño, seeded, finely chopped
- 3 T cider vinegar
- 2 T olive oil
- 1 t sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
Combine cabbage, onion and jalapeño in a large bowl. Add oil, vinegar, salt and pepper, and toss well. (This slaw is perfect with chicken as well.)
Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps
- Wrap meat and slaw in Boston lettuce leaves. You’ll need lots of napkins, but you’ll be in lite-food heaven.
- Serve Pulled Pork Wraps with sides of roasted potato and sweet corn. The Crazy Chicken Rub spice blend from Sublime Flavors, made my potatoes irresistible. (Ingredients: paprika,onion, savoury, coriander, peppercorn, thyme, orange granules, basil, allspice, lemon juice and salt.)
- Serves 6-8.
- Thanks to my son Andrew for finding the NYT Pulled Pork recipe that inspired this Pulled Pork. He seems to have a thing for Melissa Clark, the NYT queen of food-prep videos.
- If you’ve read this far, and you object to cooking pork, here is Alan Divack’s chicken version of pulled pork.
- OK, Pulled Pork isn’t on the list of top 10 foods that prevent inflammation, but it does taste so good.
- Pork: Good or bad, according to Food Network’s Healthy Eats.
- How much time have you spent lately reading a zillion lists? You’re not alone. Read Charlotte Phillips “Counting my way to a better life.”
- Auntie Ruby’s Char Siew (Asian BBQ Pork) – the Easy Way (foodismylife.wordpress.com)
- Cinco de Mayo Carnitas (rachels-table.com)