Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

Ooooh, baby. Today's recipe is easy.

Speaking of...I've noticed something about myself. Whenever I really like a recipe, my first qualifier is simplicity. After that comes deliciousness. It all speaks to my laziness and love of TV. Less time on dinner = more time with the Real Housewives. I may not be great at math, but that's the kind of equation I can get behind.

Anyway, as I was saying, today's recipe is easy. And delicious. I'm usually dubious about dump-and-stir crockpot recipes, so my first bite of Slow Cooker Pulled Pork was tentative. But my concerns disappeared as easily as this tender, fall-apart pork disappeared into my belly.

Next time you're feeling—how can I put this—less than ambitious, pop some pork into your slow cooker and tell your family you were sweating over the stove all day. They'll believe you. And then they'll offer to clean the dishes as they lick barbecue sauce off their sticky fingers.

Slow Cooker Pulled Pork

18 ounce bottle of your favorite barbecue sauce
2 tablespoons chili powder
3 1/2 pounds pork shoulder roast
1 onion, peeled and quartered
Salt and pepper
Hamburger buns, for serving (optional)
Simple Coleslaw, for serving (optional, recipe below)

In your slow cooker, stir together barbecue sauce and chili powder. Add the pork roast and roll it around so it's coated in sauce. Nestle the onions in with the pork. Cook on low for about 8 hours, or until the pork is tender and literally falls apart when you poke it with a fork. (Mine only took 7 hours, but my slow cooker tends to be on the speedy side.)

Carefully remove the pork from the slow cooker. Use forks to shred it into bite-sized pieces. Use a spoon to skim fat from the remaining sauce in the slow cooker. Stir as much sauce* as you like into the pulled pork and season to taste with salt and pepper. If desired, serve on hamburger buns topped with Simple Coleslaw (recipe below).

*A note about the sauce: If you're planning ahead for leftovers, consider leaving some of the pulled pork plain. I used the leftovers without sauce to make Cuban sandwiches and quesadillas.

Simple Coleslaw

4 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
16 ounce bag coleslaw mix (or feel free to shred your own cabbage)
Salt and pepper

Stir together mayonnaise, yogurt, vinegar, and sugar. Stir in coleslaw mix. Season to taste with salt and pepper. (At this point it will look a little bit dry.) Refrigerate at least one hour or until ready to serve. (As it sits the cabbage releases moisture and the coleslaw gets creamier. I've found that it gets soggy if you add too much mayo at the beginning, and I like my slaw crunchy. Feel free to stir in more mayo or Greek yogurt at this point if it's too dry for your taste.)

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