Thursday, December 30, 2010

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

You've been anticipating it all day. You hope the time goes quick, because you can't focus on any tasks that require serious thinking, you can't give any other subject your undivided attention because of what's on your counter. The crock pot. You left it hours ago, probably in the early hours of the dark winter morning, not looking at all like a tasty dinner. But you know there's some delicious hiding behind an 8-1o hr cooking time. It greets you at the door, welcoming you home to become immediately immersed in porky delicious aromas. The chances of me speeding home on slow cooker meal night? Very good.

I don't really like to say crock pot, it just doesn't sound like it would taste good. So I shall refer to it as the slow cooker.

Winter time is prime time for the slow cooker. You know it's also great for parties to keep your balls warm. No one likes cold balls.

Most slow cooker recipes will have you put a good sear on your meat first, to develop a bit of flavor and texture. You can skip that step here, there's no need for searing since we're shredding the meat later, making this super easy.

You need an extra hour to stop off and see your parole officer? For recipes that say 8 hours and you need 9, bust out the timer and set it appropriately. You can have meat that was in the fridge sit out in a slow cooker, covered, for about an hour before you want to start cooking it. Anything longer than that you might be looking at a scene from Into the Wild.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork
10-12 servings

1 large onion, chopped
1/2 C ketchup
1/3 C cider vinegar
1/4 brown sugar (packed, of course)
1/4 C tomato paste
2 TB smoked sweet paprika
1 TB smoked hot paprika
2 TB Worcestershire
2 TB dijon or yellow mustard
1.5 ts kosher
1.5 ts black pepper
5 whole cloves garlic, peeled
4 lb boneless pork shoulder roast, aka butt

sandwich buns
prepared BBQ sauce

Get out your big ass slow cooker and set to low (not warm). Add the chopped onion thru the garlic cloves, stir well to combine. Add the pork roast, turn to coat well. Depending on your model, you can expect to have pork ready to shred in 7-9 hrs. Damn easy that is.

When you are ready to shred, transfer the pork to a large bowl. Turn up the cooker to high and cover to bring the sauce to a slight boil. During this time, shred the pork with two forks. Add back to the sauce once it has thickened up a bit and cover. You can always add a squirt or two of your favorite BBQ sauce too, if needed. Once warmed through completely, time to build your slow cooker pulled pork BBQ sammiches.

I have exactly 5 bottles of this brand of BBQ sauce in my fridge right now. I'm a condiment whore. One shelf is just for mustard.

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