Pulled Pork with fresh tangy coleslaw
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Now for this hum-dinger of a recipe! Who doesn’t love pulled pork (apart from veggies)?! It’s become a staple of most restaurants in America and the UK, but I often think its not done brilliantly. I find it can be a but mushy, with an obsession for cooking it for as long as possible in order to get the meat super tender. While low and slow cooking is brilliant to help transform cheaper cuts of meat, hearing about a joint thats had 15 hours of cooking often means that there is absolutely no texture left in the meat at all, and it can almost be poured. In order to avoid that, I’ve cooked mine for 6 1/2 hours, which is still plenty of time to allow the fat to render down beautifully and flavour and moisten the meat, without taking away the succulent, meaty texture of pork shoulder.
Flavour-wise, the brine and rub (and the meat juices spooned over at the end) are brilliant in bringing to life a very plain tasting cut of meat. Similarly, the coleslaw is so fresh and vibrant (unlike many you buy in the supermarkets), that it helps to cut through the richness of the meat, and is well balanced with sweet and sharp/spicy flavours. I’d love for you to give this one a try. It’s a great way to try slow and low cooking. If you have any questions about the recipe, then as always, DM me on Instagram and I’ll answer as best I can. Here’s the recipe!
Ingredients (makes 8 burgers/buns):
8 white bread rolls (homemade is best)
2kg pork butt/shoulder, bone in
2 large white onions
For the brine
500ml apple juice
500ml-1 litre water
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp tabasco
2 tbsp brown sugar
For the rub
3 tbsp brown sugar
3 tbsp smoked paprika
3 tbsp cumin
2 tbsp sea salt
1 tbsp oregano
1 tbsp sweet paprika
4 cloves garlic (smoked if possible)
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp chilli flakes (chipotle if possible)
For the coleslaw
1/2 white cabbage
1/2 red cabbage
1 large carrot
1 pink lady apple
1 red chilli
Small bunch coriander
100ml white wine vinegar
50ml apple cider vinegar
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1 lemon
3 tbsp greek yoghurt
2 tbsp mayonnaise
100g caster sugar
Salt and pepper
If your butcher hasn’t already done it, remove the skin from the pork, and any excess fat you see. Once the skin is removed and the fat is trimmed, puncture the meat with a metal skewer or long thin sharp object. Make about 20-30 holes all around the meat.
Mix all the ingredients for the brine together in a bowl large enough to put the pork into, and mix together well. Add the pork into the bowl, making sure it is as submerged as it can be. Cover with cling film, and leave for 1 hour.
Finely mince the garlic cloves. Add a good pinch of salt, and a small drizzle of olive oil onto the board, and begin to smear the garlic with your knife, forming a paste. Once the garlic has become a puree, add it into a bowl, and add in all the other ingredients for the rub.
Preheat your oven to 120C. Top and tail the 2 onions. Cut into thirds, horizontally, forming thick discs. Remove the skin from the outer layer, and place together on the bottom of a large roasting tin.
Once the pork has brined for 1 hour, remove it from the liquid (but do not tip the liquid away), and pat the outside as dry as possible. Apply the rub to the meat liberally, ensuring all parts of the meat are coated evenly. If there is not enough rub for a thick coating, then make some more using the same ratio of ingredients as before, and apply to the pork.
Once the pork is covered in the rub, place the pork on top of the onions, and add in enough liquid to just cover the onions. Wrap the roasting tray in tin foil, and place the tray into the oven for 3 1/2 hours.
To make the coleslaw, mix the vinegars, sugar, yoghurt, mayonnaise, lemon juice and zest together in a large bowl. Remove the core from the cabbages, carrot and apple. Thinly slice eat vegetable into ‘julienne’ (thin strips). Finely dice the whole chilli (including seeds) and finely chop the coriander. Combine all the ingredients in the bowl with the vinegar/sugar mixture, and mix together thoroughly. Season to taste, and mix well. Cover with cling film and store in a fridge until ready to serve.
After 3 hours of cooking, remove the tin foil from the roasting tray, and turn the oven up to 140C. Baste the meat with any liquid still in the pan. Return the tray to the oven, and cook for a further 3 hours. If at any point the liquid is completely evaporated, add in a splash of boiling water.
Once the meat is cooked, remove from the oven, cover with tin foil, and leave to rest for 30 minutes. Place the pan (with the onions and residual juices still in) onto a hob on a high heat, and add 300ml boiling water. Mix together and reduce to a syrupy consistency, and set aside.
Once the meat has rested, pull the meat away from the bone using 2 forks. Dont throw away the fattier parts, simply finely chop them up, and stir through the pork. When the all the meat is off the bone, pile it up, and spoon over the ‘gravy’ liquid in the pan. Mix the meat together, and serve on a warm buttered bread roll with a generous portion of coleslaw on top.
Been wanting to do a recipe for this for such a long time, and I hope this delivers! Would absolutely love it if you gave this a go. It’s a bit of hassle, but for a ‘showstopper’ meal, its so worth it. If you do try this recipe, please let me know at @OTCooks_Eats on Instagram – would love to see where you take this recipe. Also, loads of people adore pulled pork, so if you know of someone who needs a good recipe, then please tell them about this recipe, the blog in general, and get them to follow @OTCooks_Eats for more new recipes and food inspiration. Happy cooking guys!