August 19, 2011

Pulled Pork

What You'll Need

2lb. - Pork Shoulder, only slightly trimmed

Cooking Liquid:
1 can - Beer, any kind will do
2 tbsp. - Ketchup
2 tbsp. - Worcestershire Sauce
2 tbsp. - Coarse Ground Mustard
1/2 cup - Sweet Baby Ray's BBQ Sauce

Dry Rub: (1/4 cup of each)
Ground Mustard
Cumin
Paprika
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder


I'm not sure why I wanted to make pulled pork the other day, but I'm pretty glad I did.  I guess it started with my cousin Sarah's bridal shower a few months ago.  My cousin Leah, who put together the whole shower, made pulled pork, and I'm pretty sure I had three or four helpings, it was so good. Leah is a really great cook, and the two of us can put together a really great party (with the help of my sister, too... she'd be angry if I left her out).  Well, since then, I have wanted to make my own batch of pulled pork-- and I like making things that I've never made before.  Sometimes they don't come out so great, other times, it's a success.  But, I guess you can't have a success without a little mess. (Yeah, I rhymed.)

As soon as you combine your cooking liquid and get your rub all mixed together, the rest of this recipe is a walk in the park.  No, literally, you can go take a walk in the park -- a nice 6-hour walk!

Anyway, the first thing I did was combine all the ingredients for the cooking liquid in my crock pot, and whisked them all together.  Then, I put together my rub.  After both of these things are ready to go, start by rubbing the combined dry ingredients generously and evenly onto your pork shoulder.  After rubbing the pork with the dry ingredients, insert it in the cooking liquid in the crock pot. You might need to cut the pork portion into two large chunks to fit into your crock pot... I did!  After that, turn the crock pot on high, put the lid on, and leave it for six-seven hours.

After six hours passes, use a large two-prong fork (you know, the kind you use for sausage on the grill) and start pulling apart the pork.  After six or seven hours, the meat should generally just fall apart.  What I did, was I took the two large pieces out, pulled it all apart while discarding the large chunks of fat, and then put all the pulled pieces back into the crock pot to marinate for another half hour or so.  I did that so the pork could soak up more of the beer liquid.  

If you don't want to do that, I was thinking about doing it another way, too.  If you don't want the pork to be in such a "liquidy" base, you can take it out of the crock pot with a slotted spoon, as to leave mostly all of the liquid in the pot.  Then, with the most delicious and thick BBQ sauce you can find, toss the pork in the BBQ sauce.  I like Sweet Baby Ray's... and I think a lot of people do!  If you want, you can even make your own BBQ!  

From personal opinion, if you want to serve the pork straight out of the crock pot, sitting in all of the delicious cooking liquid, I suggest serving it alongside some creamy mashed potatoes with some hearty vegetables, like glazed carrots and green beans with almonds.  However, if you served the pork doused in thick and sweet BBQ sauce, I would serve it alongside some crispy Kaiser rolls with sweet Cole slaw and maybe a grilled corn and onion salad.  Hmmm... future recipes to follow? 



Enjoy!! :)

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