I’m a sucker for good pig. Ever since I had some amazing pork a few weeks ago at a Food Blogger event, I have been wanting to make some more for myself. Then I saw some pork shoulder on sale and it was a go. We got two extremely large Pork Butt roasts so I’ve now made pulled pork twice in the last three weeks. Pulled Pork is a great way to make a ton of food for a lot of people for not a lot of money. It takes a fairly cheap cut of meat, slow roasts it and turns it into a juicy, succulent meat perfect for piling up on a bun, topping with coleslaw and enjoying with friends and family.
The first time we made it, we invited two other families over and I knew I wanted some leftovers, so we cooked up an almost 8 pound cut. It made so much meat, we could have fed twice as many people and still had leftovers. I’m not complaining though, this is one leftover I don’t mind having over and over.
The second time I made it for my team at work since it’s my last week at my current job. I followed Emeril’s recipe in the new Sizzling Skillets cookbook and cooked it in the slow cooker instead of the oven. I think I liked it even better this way and it was so much easier. It think it retained more of the juices and it cooked faster as well. It took about 14 hours when I did it in the oven and only 9 hours in the slow cooker on high. I was surprised though that Emeril’s recipe in his cookbook had you make a custom spice blend instead of just using his Essence seasoning. They are pretty similar so if you have his blend just use that instead. Since I can’t share his Sizzling Skillet Recipe with you quite yet, I’ve included the recipe I used the first time below. Try it out in the oven or the slow cooker and I think you’ll like it either way.
I was originally planning on creating a creamy coleslaw but my wife is an adamant creamy hater, so I relented and searched for a vinegar based solution. I’m glad I did too. It was a simple recipe but it was perfect for topping the meat. Throw it together with some sandwich rolls that I made from Artisan Bread in five Minutes a Day and you’ve reached near perfection.
+Spice Rub (or just use Emeril’s Essence like I did for the first time)
- 1 tbsp ground cumin
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- 1 tbsp onion powder
- 1 tbsp chili powder
- 1 tbsp cayenne pepper
- 1 tbsp salt
- 1 tbsp ground pepper
- 1 tbsp paprika
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 cup salt
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 2 qts cold water
- 3 tbsp dry rub mix
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 coca-cola
Combine all the spice rub ingredients in a small bowl.
For the brine, combine the salt and cold water and stir until the salt is dissolved. Add brown sugar, dry rub and bay leaves and stir to combine.
Place the pork shoulder in a large ziplock bag or pot. Pour in brine mixture and ensure that the pork is completely covered. Refrigerate for 3-5 hours.
Remove the pork from he brine solution and place in a large roasting pan with the fat layer facing up. Pat try with paper towels.
Cover the roast with the remaining dry rub, massaging into the meat. Insert a digital thermometer that can be left in the oven during the entire time into the thickest part of the roast but not touching the bone. Pour the coca cola into the bottom of the roasting pan.
Place in the oven, uncovered, at 225 degrees until the internal temperature reaches 200 degrees. It takes about 1.5-2 hours per pound. When the roast reaches 200 degrees, turn off the oven and let it cool to about 170 degrees. Once cooled, remove the bone from the roast and using a fork, shred the meat to desired size. It should pull apart very easily. Place all of the meat into a large pan and pour in any remaining juices from the pan. You can also add additional dry rub at this point if you want additional flavor.
Here’s the Coleslaw recipe that I used. I only used the red and green cabbage and then used Apple Cider vinegar in the vinaigrette.
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I am sure you love food. Otherwise, you won’t be here. As a full-time and a part-time chef at a local restaurant, I know my way around food. Ever since I was a young girl, I enjoyed helping my mom in the kitchen.
We would often experiment with the spices, ingredients, and flavors and create great meals for my brothers and dad. Since cocking was my first passion, I decided to go in that direction. I finished culinary school, got my first job, and started developing my skills.
Later when kids came, I had all the liberty in the kitchen to combine some of the unique flavors. A lot of them were a success, but now and there I would make a couple of mistakes.