Monday Meal: Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork | The Daily Feed

Monday, November 24, 2014

Monday Meal: Slow-Cooker Pulled Pork

Posted By on November 24, 2014, 5:22 AM

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I love pulled pork sandwiches. However, I don't always love cranking up the outdoor smoker and slow-cooking the pork for 12 hours or more. Here is an easy slow-cooker method for making pulled pork that is darned good. You won't get the crunchy "bark" that you would with slow-smoked pork, but this version is really tasty, juicy, and simple. 

One trick to getting a somewhat smoky flavor from slow-cooker pulled pork is to use smoked paprika rather than regular. You can find it in most Spanish markets and gourmet specialty shops. 

Ingredients: 

1 3 to 4 lb. boneless pork shoulder or pork butt, trimmed of excess fat

1/4 cup brown sugar

2 tsp. paprika, preferable smoked paprika

1 tsp. ground cumin

1 tsp. mustard powder

2 tsp. kosher salt

1 tsp. black pepper

1 Tbs. canola or vegetable oil

1/4 cup tomato paste

1/2 cup cider vinegar

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Method: 

In a small bowl, mix together 1 Tbs. of the brown sugar with the paprika, cumin, mustard powder, salt and pepper. 

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Rub the spice mixture onto the pork, making sure to season all sides. 

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In a large skillet, heat the cooking oil over medium-high heat. Add the pork and brown lightly on all sides, about 7-9 minutes total. 

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Remove the pork and place it on a plate. 

Deglaze the skillet with 3/4 cup water (or you could use broth), whisking and scraping up the pan drippings. 

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Transfer the pan liquid to a slow-cooker. 

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Add an additional 1 cup of water or broth to the slow-cooker, along with the remaining 2 Tbs. brown sugar, tomato paste and vinegar. Whisk to combine the ingredients. 

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Place the pork into the slow-cooker, cover and cook on low for 6 to 8 hours, or until the pork begins to fall apart. 

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Remove the pork from the slow-cooker and place on a cutting board. 

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Strain the liquid from the slow-cooker into a saucepan. 

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Bring the liquid to a boil and cook over medium-high heat until reduced by about half. Taste the liquid and season with additional salt, if necessary.

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Roughly chop or pull the pork into pieces and place into a large bowl. Add some of the cooking liquid to the bowl and toss to moisten the pork.

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Serve the pork on buns with additional barbecue sauce or cooking liquid alongside.

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Photos by Ted Scheffler 


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