Sunday, November 9, 2008

Football Sunday!

So when it's time to have people over for an afternoon of football watching and relaxing, here's how my thought process tends to go:

1) Lots of snacks to whet everyone's appetite before serving food
2) Make something that is forgiving in terms of cooking error and cooking time
3) Make one main dish that I am positive everyone who is coming will like
4) Make something that can be served family-style

So, planning on having 10 people over, here was the menu as I planned it:

Veggies, potato chips and dip
Guacamole and tortilla chips (as I knew my friends would be demanding of the guac)
Hot artichoke dip
Chicken wings (honey BBQ and buffalo)
Pulled pork w/ sandwich slaw

Needless to say, we ended up only having 5 people over, so I ended up not making the hot artichoke dip, nor did I make the chicken wings. However, I presented a delicious spread of yellow & red peppers, carrots, celery and broccoli, with some old-school sour cream-Knorr vegetable soup dip. Also, the guacamole made its appearance and its equally quick disappearance, thanks to my wife and friends that can never get enough of it - they inhaled 6 avocado's worth in about a minute or two. It was then time for the main course - the magical animal!

I am a huge fan of slow-cooked shredded meat, and pulled pork is my absolute favorite. Normally, my recipe involves a dry rub and smoking and a finish in the oven and a long rest. Also inherent in my recipe are two sauces, a seriously spicy no-nonsense vinegar/sugar/ketchup/cayenne that gets mixed through the meat, and a thick and spicy BBQ sauce that goes on the buns. Topped with a sandwich slaw, it's the most delicious stuff in the world.

Looking for a recipe that I could make in the oven, I flipped through my CIA Professional Chef textbook, and I found an extremely simple recipe that looked delicious, and came out even better. It also had recipes for two sauces that were similar to my sauces. I decided to roll the dice and violate Bonnie's Rule of Cooking #1. Everyone were fans!

Recipes after the jump.

Carolina Style Pulled Pork
12 lb of pork shoulder
1 oz of salt (don't be scared if it looks like alot)
1/2 oz of freshly ground pepper (again, don't be scared)

Preheat your oven to 300 degrees. Sprinkle the pork shoulder all over with salt and pepper. Put a wire rack on a rimmed baking sheet, put the pork on it, then put it in the oven. Roast for 5 hours. Take it out, let it cool until you can handle it, then pull it apart with your fingers. EASY.

Just make sure you don't overcook the pork, as it will not pull apart as easy as you'd like it to. When you're done, serve with your sauces (which I'll post tomorrow) on split buns, with sauces and coleslaw. The perfect meal to please a crowd.


Katherine said...

About damn time, Rosey!