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Monday, May 5, 2014

How to Make Pulled BBQ Pork

Sweet, tangy barbecue pork roast is a crowd pleaser and cooking for a crowd doesn't have to be a hassle. Cook the roasts the day before the event since they take some time to finish. Reheat in a slow oven with the shredded meat covered with foil. Serve with your favorite barbecue sauce, coleslaw, baked beans and of course soft rolls.
Pick Your Piggy Part
The best pork roasts for barbecue pork are from either end of the pig and the legs. These cuts benefit from long, slow, moist cooking. They are also well-marbled with fat which adds flavor and keeps the meat moist. Try pork butt, shoulder or fresh ham. Lean, tender cuts such as pork loin or pork tenderloin are more expensive and don't need, or benefit from, slow cooking. Pork tenderloin is very lean and doesn't work well for a barbecue pork roast.
Smaller is Better
In this case, several smaller roasts are better than one big roast, since the smaller roasts take less time to cook, are easier to maneuver and can be baked in a regular-size pan. Cut the roasts into 3 to 4 pound roasts or ask your butcher to do it for you. When these cuts are on sale, the meat department often cuts it to your request.
Time for a Bath
Give that roast a saltwater bath. Brine the roasts for 24 to 48 hours before cooking. A ratio of 1 part salt to 16 parts water is a good ratio. Add 1 part sugar if you like to impart a slightly sweet taste to the pork. Toss in seasonings such cinnamon, cloves, orange slices, thyme and sage. Keep the roasts in the brine in the refrigerator. If you don't have enough room in the refrigerator for three or four roasts you could use a high-quality cooler. Add a bag or two of ice on the bottom of the cooler. Put the roasts and the brine in a zipper-lock bags. You may have to use the extra-large size bags to hold the roast and the brine. Squeeze out the air in the bag so the roast is completely covered with brine. Lay the roasts on top of the ice. Add enough ice to fill the cooler. The inside of the cooler must be kept below 40 degrees Fahrenheit to keep the pork safely. Bacteria start to multiply above 40 F. Check with a thermometer and add ice or dry ice if necessary.
Slow and Low
Remove the pork roasts from the brine and rinse. Pat on a dry rub of your choice. Using the same seasonings you used for the brine amps up the flavor. Put the roasts in roasting pans in a preheated 300 F oven. The pans should be spaced so that there is plenty of room around each roast for the hot air to circulate. You may have to change the positions of the pans midway through the roasting time. Add a cup of water, juice or wine to the bottom of the pan. Baste the roast with the liquid in the pan every 30 minutes. Bake for 4 to 6 hours until the meat can be easily shredded with a fork. You could also you a slow cooker. You'll need one for each roast. Brown the roast in hot oil. Place in the cooker and add seasonings and liquid. Turn on low and cook for 8 hours.
Dee Power is the author of several business books. While she may be an expert in business her passion is food. Find more cooking tips and tricks at her blog Salmon It's What's for Dinner More food Adventures of Brian and Dee

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