American Inspired: BBQ Pulled Pork

My boyfriend and I have wanted to try out making BBQ pulled pork for a while, so this weekend we finally did. I found a recipe online but adapted it slightly to suit my kitchen and what I had in the cupboards. It really is super simple so don't be put off by the long cooking times.
Excuse the poor quality phone photo - I was far too eager to eat it once it was cooked..
Slow-cooked pork is one of my favourite dishes to cook on a Sunday for a roast dinner. This recipe is very similar; it's cooked for 4-7 hours, really depending on the size of the cut of meat you get. The recipe I found called for shoulder of pork but I always go with loin. Not only does is fall apart and become really tender when slow cooked but there's a nice layer of fat on the top if you like crackling.
This recipe serves 4 - 5 people but if you are big eaters then I would suggest getting a bigger cut of meat because although it may look like enough, it does shrink down in size once cooked.


1kg loin of pork
For the seasoning:
2 tsp smoked paprika
4 tsp salt - I like to use Maldon Sea Salt
4 tsp muscovado sugar

Firstly, preheat your oven to the hottest temperature, this will be around 250C. You really want to blast the meat in a hot oven to get some of the moisture out of it. 
To prepare the meat, you should always pat it dry to allow it to crisp up on the outside when you first put it in the oven. Mix together all the ingredients for the seasoning, you will probably have to get your hands in there if, like mine, your sugar has come together to form one giant sugar lump. Muscovado has a tendency to do this. Next use just half of this and just rub it over all sides of the meat. Transfer the meat to a deep baking tray and cover with foil. Put in the hot oven for 35 minutes or until browned.
You then want to turn the oven down to 125C and cook for 4 hours, the temperature inside the meat should reach about 90C and if you have one, measure this with a meat thermometer. If you are unsure, leave it for an extra 30 minutes - it won't do it any harm. You then want to take it out of the oven and either pour the meat juices that are in the bottom of the baking tray into a bowl and put to one side, or move the meat over to another tray. Turn the temperature of the oven all the way back up to the highest setting and blast it for another 30 minutes.
After this, take the meat out of the oven and cover in foil. You should leave it to rest for at least half an hour. Don't skip this step! The smells coming from the oven may have been teasing you all day but this really does make a huge difference! You then want to shred the meat. I tore it apart by slicing with a chefs knife and then chopped it a bit more - it kind of falls apart as you cut it anyway. Any bigger bits I just pulled apart with my fingers. Put the meat in a serving dish and sprinkle on the remaining of the seasoning that you made earlier and also pour over the juices that you'd previously drained off. Then give it a good mix and put it in the oven again for 15 minutes just to heat back up. I would suggest making a BBQ sauce to have with this but I was too lazy and bought a jar from the supermarket and just heated it slightly and it was still delicious.
You'll then have beautifully tender and BBQ flavoured pork. I served mine with the classic BBQ side, macaroni and cheese, and some veg. Enjoy!


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