Well my computer up and died on me last week and I haven’t been able to do much until today. I am back on my feet now with a new laptop and can get back to working and blogging. We had a very busy day yesterday that included a very extensive meal. It was busy and I was cooking for hours, but it was very enjoyable and the meal turned out quite well. So well in fact, that it gave me recipes to use for the entire week! This is what we have to look forward to as far as posts:
Monday (today): Smoked Barbecued Pulled Pork
Tuesday: Barbecued Baked Beans in the slow cooker
Wednesday: German Potato Salad
Thursday: Homemade Salsa, Guacamole, Nachos and Ranch Dressing,
Friday: Easy Blueberry Pie
I made a lot of things yesterday when we had some guests over and started cooking at 8 AM so I could get everything done in time. The centerpiece of the meal was pulled pork. I have made pulled pork before, but the weather is getting nicer, so I decided I was going to incorporate the grill into this meal and use it for the pork. This is not a difficult recipe, but I did have to make a few adjustments. Since we live in a condo, here in New York you are not allowed to have a gas or charcoal grill near the structure, so we do have a nice sized electric grill that I use. It does affect the cooking, and I would rather use a gas grill, but the law’s the law and I have to go with it so we use the electric. It’s harder to control the heat since you can’t control heat distribution, so if you have gas or charcoal I think this will work better for you, but I was able to make it work with electric. The recipe itself, from America’s Test Kitchen, is written to use on a gas grill.
Barbecued Pulled Pork
1 (6 to 8 pound) Boston Pork Butt
1/2 cup chili powder
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup salt
2 tablespoons black pepper
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
4 cups wood chips, soaked and drained
2 cups barbecue sauce
Mix the chili powder, brown sugar, salt black pepper and cayenne pepper until well combined. Massage the pork all over with the rub and let it stand at room temperature, covered loosely with plastic wrap, for 1 hour.
Place the wood chips in a disposable tray and rest the tray directly on top of the primary burner. Turn all the burners to high, close the lid and heat the grill until very hot and the chips are smoking, about 15 minutes. Clean and oil the grill. Turn the primary burner down to medium and turn off the other burners.
Place the pork in an aluminum roasting pan and position the pan over the cooler part of the grill. Barbecue, covered, for 4 hours, flipping and rotating the meat every hour. (The temperature inside the grill should remain between 275 and 300 degrees,)
Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 300 degrees. Remove the pan of pork from the grill, wrap tightly with heavy-duty foil, and transfer to the oven. Continue to cook in the oven until the meat is for tender, 1 to 2 hours. Remove the roast from the oven and let rest (without removing the foil) for 30 minutes.
Transfer the roast to a carving board and, when cool enough to handle, “pull” the pork by tearing the meat into thin shreds with your fingers (I used two forks to shred it myself), Place the shredded meat in a large bowl. Toss with 1 cup of the barbecue sauce, adding more to taste. Serve, passing the remaining sauce separately.
A couple of notes about the recipe. I was still able to use the wood chips, putting some in a cast iron smoker box I have and laying that under the heating element of the grill. It did create enough smoke to do the job. I also tried to keep the pork in the pan toward the outer edge of the grill surface since the electrical element of the grill is right in the center. I think this helped keep it on the cooler part of the grill. I think you could easily do the whole recipe on the grill, leaving it on the grill for the extra 1 to 2 hours instead of transferring to the oven, if that’s what you wanted to do, and it will turn out fine. The recipe recommends that you serve the pork with plain white bread, but I went with small rolls instead. I’m not a big fan of white bread, but use what you like best. Of course, I did serve it with pickle chips and the pickles do add a nice flavor to the sandwich if that’s the way you want to eat it. I also dressed the pork with a little less barbecue sauce and let people add their own to it if they wanted it. To me, this way if you would rather taste the smoke and the flavor of the rub over the sauce you could.
I wish I had taken pictures of the whole meal, but with my computer not working and all the time in the kitchen, by the time I thought of it, it was too late. Everyone took some leftovers home with them and we have enough left here for another meal for Michelle, Sean and myself. Tomorrow I will provide the recipe for one of the side dishes we had, which was barbecued baked beans done in the slow cooker. Until then, enjoy your day and enjoy your meal!