It’s been a great summer for barbecues. Plenty of nice weather, lots of opportunity for lounging around in the garden eating sausages and burgers, together with a nice beer or two. Today though, it’s clear that winter is now here. Last night saw the temperatures fall below freezing, and today we had cold, wet sleet. Most folk will have wrapped up their barbecues now and put them to one side for the winter. It’s a shame that these things get neglected over the winter months when they’re capable of producing some great meals. For winter, I’ve pulled our barbecue up to the side of the house, and will be continuing to use it. This weekend, for example, I’ll be cooking a shoulder of mutton on it.
So, for this challenge, I want Anya to dust off her barbecue and cook something a bit more interesting than just sausages and burgers on it. I want her to cook a whole joint of meat – specifically, a shoulder of pork. For this challenge, Anya is going to make pulled pork.
I did a lot of experimenting with my barbecue over the summer, determined to expand my barbecuing repertoire and learn how to cook whole joints of meat. It turns out that it’s surprisingly easy. I made a whole range of things – beef brisket, roast chicken, shoulder of lamb, rib of beef, and all were surprisingly simple and quite delicious. I documented some of these over on my blog. My favourite was probably the pulled pork, which was especially good, and that’s why I’ve selected it for this challenge.
My first attempt at pulled pork was very tasty, but a little more chewy that I would really have liked. The second time I tried, I not only waited for it to get to the required temperature (85˚C), but I then left it cooking slowly for a good hour longer. This version was much better – deliciously tender. I think slow cooking over indirect heat, and giving it plenty of time is the key. You can read more about my pulled pork here, including a recipe for a rather nice Carolina-style BBQ Sauce to go with it.
It’s worth cooking a larger piece of meat, as the shredded pork freezes well, and defrosts quickly to make a delicious pulled pork sandwich.
And remember folks, a barbecue is for life, not just summer.
Using a shoulder of pork and a barbecue, make pulled pork.