Friday, December 30, 2011

Pulled Pork and Slaw Sandwiches

Back to a text only blog for a while as I catch up on all of the cooking I have done this year!  What can I say about pulled pork sandwiches that hasn't already been said?  Pulled pork may be the sandwich of the gods and this coming from a girl that has a lukewarm relationship with pork.  My father referred to me as his Jewish princess for years because of my distaste for pork.  The odyssey that is my evolving feelings for pork could fill a blog on its own.
Anyway, for those of you who grew up under a rock or perhaps just further from the Southland than I did, here's what pulled pork is.  It's the result of a slow, low, delicious roasting process.  In this case, I prepared a huge pork shoulder as detailed in building blocks blog for pork.  You can season the pork many ways during this process and just about all of them are good.  The shoulder is fatty, which makes it deliciously juicy.  After hours of slow cooking the pork in the oven, it will become fork tender and then after even more time, it will fall apart.  You always want to make sure you catch it in that sweet spot before it becomes dry.  Dry pork can of course be saved with a luscious barbeque sauce, but let's not rely on the sauce to do all the work.
Now that you have your wonderfully slow roasted pork shredded to perfection, it is time to make some sandwiches!  We never wait til this recipe comes up in the rotation.  We make it the day of or the day after the roast comes out of the oven because it's just that good!  Honestly, in this case, we never refer to the Rachael Ray recipe but just wing it on our own.  The recipe looks excellent though, so feel free to dive in.  And if you're in a pinch for time, or just don't feel like making your own sauce, grab your favorite bottled barbeque and go nuts.  There are some great brands out there!
Oddly enough, I have never been a "slaw" fan either but I have learned to stop worrying and love the slaw. (bonus points if you caught that esoteric reference)  It adds a fun crunch and clean flavor that I enjoy.  I often cheat and make it a no mayo slaw because I much prefer vinegar to mayonnaise.  If you just can't bear to have the slaw on the sandwich, as a certain Bean I know can't, then feel free to slap it along side the sandwich and enjoy!  Or make your own tasty side.  Maybe some mac and cheese or a pasta salad...?  Oh and if you are going to skip that crunchy slaw as a topping I recommend toasting and buttering the bun!  Yum!
I guess I had more to say about the humble and delectable pulled pork sandwich than I thought!  What do you like with your pulled pork?  Are you a slaw on top or slaw on the side or none of the above?

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