Sunday, October 7, 2012

Pulled Pork from my Crock Pot

This should have been last week’s posting, but I think old age is catching up with me because I was just too tired from the “9 to 5-plus” to do any writing… or that could have been the “itis” I experienced after enjoying my meal.

You see that Sunday, I was feeling – make that craving – some sweetly seasoned pork, but I didn’t want to eat it the usual way. You know how we Trinis usually do it… we season it really nicely with some fresh herbs, brown it down in a lovely stew and serve it with some rice or provisions. But nah… instead, I wanted to season it, cook it and eat it with bread.

(Yeah, I’m weird like that sometimes…)

My weapon or choice? My crock pot (also known as a slow cooker).

My choice cut? The pork loin, the most tender cut of the pig. You can bake it, stew it, roast it or (as I was about to do), slow cook it to perfection. Right then and there, however, I thought I would try an experiment and deviate from my usual seasoning methods and go for something like a ginger-barbecue flavour.

Wanna see how it went down? Follow me… 

Gathered up my arsenal of (un)usual suspects. As you can see, they’re not your typical Trini seasonings, other than the thyme, onion, garlic and pimento peppers, right? Also, I had some barbecue sauce on standby… this is a pulled pork filling, not so?

Next, I got the lovely loin out and admired its beauty. *huge grin*

Cut up the loin and began the seasoning process with some salt and lemon juice. 

Next came the allspice and ginger powder, soy sauce, Angostura bitters, a couple dashes of ginger sauce, and a tablespoon of brown sugar. I let it sit for about half an hour.  
I then started building my layers in the crock pot. I sliced the onion into rings and spread them on the bottom and added the halved pimento peppers on top of that. Next came the seasoned pork loin to cover the peppers and onions.

After that, I separated the thyme and placed the sprigs on the meat, along with 3 smashed cloves of garlic. Sprinkled in some red pepper flakes for a little heat. Poured about half the apple juice (drank the rest, ha-ha) and lastly, the marinade liquid.
(It’s a Trini thing; yuh done know!) 

The crock pot was covered. I put the heat on high, and cooked it for 3 to 4 hours or so. When I opened it, I was greeted with the most amazing aroma, and I was able to pull off a piece of meat with my tongs with hardly any effort. So, out it came to be pulled apart with two forks.

All done. But wait, there’s more!

I took a potspoonful of the liquid, plus some of the solids (pimento peppers, garlic, etc) and added them to the pulled pork (along with a cup or so of barbecue sauce) and mixed it together.

Voila! My pulled pork was ready for presentation.

A simple toasted yellow sesame seed bun was all I needed. A couple of good sized forkfuls of meat, some cooked onions and a few dashes of Tabasco sauce.

There you have it; my deliciously perfect pulled pork sandwich. Care for a bite?

Crock pot love was paramount with this dish, I’ll can tell you. It's the best feeling in the world when you don’t have to stand and 'turn a pot' and let something else do the cooking for you. And I must say again, this pulled pork sandwich was truly delicious. Leftovers didn’t stay long in the fridge either, because I ended up using them in a couple of pulled pork omelettes later in the week. Versatile? Oh yeah baby!

So that's it for today's posting. Hope you enjoyed this one, and I hope to meet up with you again for another culinary romp in my little kitchen.
Take care of yourselves, and like I always say, don’t forget to mind the pot!