Monday, October 18, 2010

Cooking with Beer: Slow Cooked Pulled Pork

We were having our End of Summer BBQ at work, even though San Diego didn't really have a summer this year. I needed a dish that would feed a small office (I decided 4.5 lb pork shoulder will work) and wouldn't require too much cooking time at work. This means time for the slow cooker.  I really like using slow cookers for the ease and the ability to make some very tender meat. But what they lack is being able to get a nice flavorful skin on the meat. So with this one I decide to throw the meat on the smoker for a few hours before serving.
Where does the beer come in. The beer is used in the slow cooker. I loosely used the BBQ Sauce recipe from the Homebrew Chef, Sean Paxton. I omitted the espresso for this one since I was using my Belgian Dubbel instead of stout. I also added enough beer to fill most of the slow cooker.
I set it on low for overnight cooking about 10 hours. It was a pretty great smell to wake up to. I got to work early and set up my electric water smoker.
I took the basically done pork shoulder and dried it of with paper towels. I then put a dry rub all over. I used the dry rub recipe from the Smoking Bottle blog (his pork recipe is here).
The pork was on the smoker for about 4 hours and it got just a bit of smoke. I would prefer more but for this case it worked pretty well. So all that is left is to grab 2 forks and start pulling. If cooked well this should take minimal effort. I then like to mix the cooked meat with my favorite BBQ sauce and serve that way. But for this work event I allowed people to put on their own BBQ sauce. I'm still working on making my own BBQ sauce that I like as much as Sweet Baby Ray's.

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