Thursday, August 31, 2006

Pulled pork

Beginning in the 1950s, American pork producers tried to change pork's image of being a fatty meat by instituting breeding programs to reduce fat content. While this has resulted in leaner meat as demanded by the U.S. market, the taste and quality of American-raised pork has dramatically declined as well. This is not the case in Germany, where I spent the last week and where the pork is as tender and flavorful as it was a century ago.

In a tribute to pork (and as requested by my friend Heather), I'll share a recipe for crockpot pulled pork. Yes, I know, real pulled pork comes from smoking a pork shoulder over low heat for many, many hours, but for those of us who don't have a smoker handy, this isn't a bad substitute.

Crockpot Pulled Pork

1 Pork Butt Roast (3-4 lbs)
1/2 onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon dry mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 cups ketchup
1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
liquid smoke, to taste (optional)

Place the pork roast in the crockpot, fat side up. Cut the roast in half to get it to fit, if necessary. Cover with the onions. Mix the rest of the ingredients and put on top of the onions. Cook on low for at least 8 hours (preferably 10 hours), until the roast is fork tender.

Remove roast to cutting board. Pull it apart from the bone with two forks. Meanwhile, pour off the sauce into a container. Skim off the fat that rises to the top. Add the sauce to the pork and serve.