I know, I'm committing bar-be-cue heresy, just bear with me. Unlike most of my Texan neighbors I do not own a smoker, (yet). I'm one of the few out here with a propane gas grill. And while I can make a mean rack of ribs on it, pulled pork and brisket are just not feasible. I cannot justify the amount of propane it would take to cook something for at least twelve hours. I also don't enjoy the summer heat and humidity here is Texas, so am glad to make this indoors. So I turn to my crock pot the night before I want to serve this, with very delicious results.
I adapted this recipe for my crock pot from an authentic smoker recipe and started making it when I lived back in California for catering. It is so easy, and makes so much, it's really a no brainer. Many, many people have asked for the recipe, and are shocked to find out it is as easy as it is. They too think they're going to have to be standing guard all night over a smoker, and are delighted to find out they get to sleep through the work.
There are actually four parts to this recipe, but don't let the number of components worry you, each one only takes about five minutes to complete.
~6 lbs. Pork Shoulder (Boston Butt)
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
3 tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
3 tablespoons (packed) dark or light brown sugar
3 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons Kosher salt
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or to taste)
How to Put it All Together:
Mix the rub ingredients together in a small bowl to combine. Then "rub" over the Boston Butt. No I don't know why it's called "butt" if it's from the shoulder. Anyway, place pork in your crock pot, and drizzle vinegar and Worcestershire sauce over the meat. Cover with the lid, set on low, and go to bed. Sleep in, the meat can wait. The great thing about this dish is the meat can be ready for lunch, or just keep it going until dinner. It's very forgiving. When your pork looks like this . . .spoon the extra juices off the meat and any fat. The pork will give off a lot of juice and you don't want your pulled pork swimming in it. I take out as much as I can with a ladle, some extra moisture left behind is fine. Especially if you're going to keep the pork in the crock pot on "warm", or whatever setting your crock pot has, until everything else is ready. Take two forks to the roast and shred the meat.
You now have delicious pulled pork.
1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup ketchup
1 tablespoon (packed) light or dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon Kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
Simply combine all the ingredients until the sugar and salt dissolves. The sauce can be made a couple of days in advance, and it keeps well in the refrigerator.
The coleslaw is also Carolina, so again, we're talking tangy and sharp. Not the sweet stuff you get at your grocery store deli counter. It only has three ingredients, and if you made you're own sauce, you're already 1/3 of the way there.
1 cup mayonnaise
1/2 cup Bar-be-cue Sauce
1 2 1/2-pound green cabbage, quartered, cored, very thinly sliced (Or you can use the preshredded stuff)
Whisk the mayonnaise and bar-be-cue sauce together to combine well. Add the cabbage and toss to coat. You may add salt and pepper to taste. Refrigerate at least two hours and up to ten before serving, tossing occasionally.
The cooking method may not be authentic, but the classic Carolina Pulled Pork is served sandwich style on a soft bun, topped with the coleslaw with just a drizzle of the tangy sauce. Especially good served with a spear of dill pickle and some crunchy chips, (potato or corn, you decide). And there you have it, Carolina Pulled Pork Sandwiches, and you didn't even have to sweat away in the blazing summer heat to enjoy some tasty summer, (or anytime of the year) bar-be-cue.