Friday, August 15, 2008

Pulled Pork Meal - 8/15/08

A lot of what I cook comes from random inspiration. The inspiration behind today was to make a spin on BBQ sauce. My first idea was to make a pineapple BBQ sauce, so after scouring Food Network's website, I found a recipe for a sauce using cola, so I thought that would be a pretty good base for me to replace the cola with pineapple juice. The end result was:

2 cloves garlic, mashed
1/8 tsp salt
1.75 cup pineapple juice
3/4 cup ketchup
1/8 cup cider vinegar
1T Worcestershire sauce
Pepper, to taste

All of this was combined in a saucepan and simmered for 45 minutes to make a ketchup/BBQ sauce consistency. The flavor is a toned down pineapple-tomato with some nice tang to it too.

BBQ Sauces

Ever since I tasted an espresso BBQ sauce, I wanted to make some for myself. I found this recipe for it from Michael Chiarello. You cannot taste the coffee as a flavor, but it deepens and darkens the flavor of the sauce. Instead of the prescribed 10 minutes, I cooked it for 45 minutes to thicken it up.

Pulled Pork Sandwich & Slaws

What better vehicle for BBQ sauce than pulled pork sandwiches? Paula Dean has a good recipe pulled pork sandwiches, though I will admit I used chicken stock instead of the apple juice just because after 3 trips to the grocery store for this meal, I wasn't going back just for some juice. This pork turned out quite delicious by itself and was even better combined with the BBQ sauces. I will admit that I did cheat and buy some Bush's baked beans to serve on the side as well.

NC Pulled Pork

In the above picture, you can see I made some cole slaws. One is more classic - cider vinegar, honey, salt, pepper, a little mayo, and celery seed. The other is more Asian - mirin, sesame seeds, sesame oil, and seasoned rice vinegar. I ate the classic one by itself, but with the Asian one, I wanted to try something new. In North Carolina, it is common to eat a BBQ pork sandwich with cole slaw on it. In keeping with tradition, I put some of the Asian slaw on top of some of the pork that had been mixed with the pineapple BBQ sauce. The combination of these two items was quite good - soft yet crunchy, sweet yet tangy and nutty. It was a veritable East meets North (Carolina).

Mimosa Salad

As another side, I made a salad inspired by one from my trip. It is a base of spinach leaves, heirloom tomatoes, purple bell pepper (yes, purple), and tangelo segments (membranes removed). The mimosa dressing is made with the juice of one tangelo, champagne vinegar and a little lemon-infused olive oil. I wish the tangelos were a little sweeter right now, but the dressing still had enough of the mimosa taste to it to make me happy.

No comments: