Never quite follows the recipe. Doesn't really measure. Tastes with her fingers. Somehow, it always works.

Low’n'Slow Pork: 2 days/2 ways

Posted: June 28th, 2009 | Author: johanna | Filed under: Johanna | 27 Comments »

Low & SlowAlong with being a sucker for a sale, I am a sucker for anything I can buy once and serve twice. Bulk cuts of meat are something that I will go for if I have the chance. Especially considering that Jesse happens to love BBQ.
Back in November, I made pork shoulder tacos in my slow-cooker. They were alright, but I always wondered if I could do better. I don’t really like cooking fatty things in a slow-cooker, since the fat stays IN the slow-cooker with your meat.
Then, 2 weeks ago, we went to the Big Apple BBQ Block Party in Madison Square Park, and I tasted my first ever real, true barbecue. I had pulled pork, brisket and smoked sausage with a ridiculously good vinegary sauce, and the first coleslaw I’ve ever actually enjoyed. I was amazed. I had no idea that things could taste like these pitmasters made them taste. Since then, the idea of BBQ has been in my head a little. So when I was looking for things to cook this week, I found pork shoulder on Fresh Direct, and decided to undertake slow-cooked pork two ways, using one base rub, one base cooking.

On Saturday morning, I got up, and concocted a spice rub based on a Tyler Florence recipe. However, I don’t believe in paprika. So instead of the 3 tablespoons of paprika, I used a tablespoon and a half each of cumin and chili powder. I also don’t have dry mustard. I don’t really know what dry mustard tastes like — just that it’s yellow. So, the yellowest spice that I have is tumeric, which I added in the place of dry mustard. Then, I added a few shakes of garam masala, off-recipe, because I like it. I rubbed it all over the 6-pound pork shoulder roast and let it sit in the fridge for 3 hours.

After I let it marinate for a few hours, I put it in the oven at 250-degrees for 6 or 7 hours. In the last hour of cooking, 2 poblano pepeprs and half an onion went into the oven with the pork. After the pork and peppers came out, I heated up a cup of fire roasted crushed tomatoes in a saucepan. I peeled and de-seeded the poblanos, and blended them with the onion in the blender with a little water, until they made a smooth puree. then, I added the tomatoes, a good pinch of salt, pepper, and hot sauce.
I combined the sauce with half of the shredded pork, and put it on tortillas with shredded cabbage and sour cream. It was pretty much….a win. :)
Shredded pork tacos
Then, tonight, I went full-out. Pulled-pork BBQ sandwich, and cabbage slaw.
Full disclosure: I don’t like coleslaw. I’m not a good little Polish girl – cabbage and I are not great friends. However, at the Big Apple BBQ, I tasted claw from the Salt Lick that was reminiscent of kimchi – the vinegary, spicy pickled cabbage of Korean food. So I went to Tyler Florence again to make my sauce, because for some strange reason, I trust the overgrown frat-boy.
BBQ sauce:

1 1/2 cup Cider Vinegar
1 cup Yellow Mustard
1/2 cup Ketchup
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 crushed garlic cloves
1 teaspoon salt
3-5 dashes hot sauce

I simmered all the items together, while the pork reheated. Literally all there is to do is dump and stir. This sauce was a great starting point, athough next time I think I’ll drop the mustard down to 1/2 cup. I’m a fan of a thinner, vinegary sauce, and the mustard was a little too much.

For the kimchi slaw, I did the following:
1 head (or less if you use the same head that you cut some off of for the prior night’s tacos) green cabbage, cut into shreds
1 cup of a combination of cider vinegar, white wine vinegar, and white vinegar. I think a combination of cider and rice wine vinegar would be good.
1-2 teaspoons Sriracha
1 tablespoon sugar
I combined the vinegars, sriracha and sugar, and poured it over the cabbage. Then, right before serving I toasted white sesame seeds in a dry skillet until they got a little bit brown, and tossed them in as well.

Just for the sake of comparison, here I am at the BBQ Block party, eating my pulled pork:
BBQ Block Party And here I am tonight, on my couch, again with my pulled pork:
Bedford Ave BBQSee the face? See the smile? Same face. Same smile.
It. was. gooooood.


27 Comments on “Low’n'Slow Pork: 2 days/2 ways”

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