Pop Pulled Pork

Recently at the Diner, we planned for a hunker-down day. It was a little stormy outside and it sounded like a good day for a slow cook…something. A week before HH and I watched the Food Network’s Pioneer Woman with a Pop Pulled Pork. The actual recipe called for Dr. Pepper but you can basically use any flavor or caramel-y/molasses colored pop you want.

Since I do not proclaim to be much good at cooking hunks of meat, I figured the pork shoulder on sale couldn’t be too bad if things went astray. So in the morning after a little breakfast I put the pork shoulder on to cook and let it be. Here’s how it started off, you can see the onion platform and Dr. Pepper in the bottom of the Dutch oven.

After about two hours, a turn was required. Then another two hours and another turn – it started falling apart, a good sign. Then after about six and a half hours this beautifully browned, falling-off-of-the-bone hunk of meat (that apparently I didn’t ruin!) came out of the oven to rest.

I started separating the remaining chunks of fat (just couldn’t handle putting those back in the mix), skimming off the fat from the top of the drippings and pulling all the meat apart. So easy!

HH walked in, we had been smelling the wonderfulness-of-it-all all day, so HH put in his fork, pulled out a sample and “Oh My Gosh! This is so good! So good!!” Success!

With a side of sweet potato (baked) fries and some homemade cole slaw, the meal for a hunker-down day was a raving success! This recipe calls for chipotle peppers in adobo sauce, since that’s not HH’s favorite I left it out, but you be the judge for your Diner crowd.

Spicy Dr. Pepper Shredded Pork
(or Pop Pulled Pork - Holly's Diner style)
By Ree Drummond, www.pioneerwoman.com

1 whole large onion
1 whole pork shoulder – 5 – 7 lbs
Salt & pepper
1 can (11 oz) chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
2 cans Dr. Pepper
2 tbsp brown sugar

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
Peel the onion and cut it into wedges. Lay them in the bottom of a large Dutch oven.
Generously salt and pepper the pork roast, then set it on top of the onions in the pan.
Pour the can of chipotle peppers over the pork (include the sauce.) Pour in both cans of Dr Pepper. Add brown sugar to the juice and stir in.
Place lid tightly on pot, then set pot in the oven. Cook for at least six hours, turning roast two or three times during the cooking process. Check meat after six hours; it should be absolutely falling apart (use two forks to test.) If it’s not falling apart, return to the oven for another hour.
Remove meat from pot and place on a cutting board or other work surface. Use two forks to shred meat, discarding large pieces of fat. Strain as much of the fat off the top of the cooking liquid as you can and discard it. Return the shredded meat to the cooking liquid, and keep warm until ready to serve. (You can also refrigerate the meat and liquid separately, then remove hardened fat once it’s cold. Then heat up the liquid on the stovetop and return the meat to the liquid to warm up.
Serve on warm flour tortillas. Top with shredded lettuce, diced tomatoes, grated cheese, avocado slices, salsa, and whatever else you’d like.

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