We’re eating pineapple marinated pulled pork tossed with a pineapple hoisin bbq sauce on fresh ciabatta bread w/ creamy, tangy Asian-style coleslaw.
Having been raised in Virginia, I’ve eaten my share of pulled pork and know and love it intimately. Especially the tangy North Carolina style that uses a vinegar based barbecue sauce. Every time I go to make pulled pork my heartstrings almost always win out and I make some variation of this style. Fortunately for you guys, I persevered this time! Screw you, nostalgic heartstrings. Who needs flavors of home when you can have flavors of Asia all up in your pulled pork sandwich. 😉 Hell, I should have just pickled some vegetables, thrown on some cilantro and called this a ghetto banh mi… but I didn’t. I let some of that damn nostalgia come in and topped my sandwich with some good old coleslaw and hot sauce – just like the sandwiches I at so many of as a child.
In addition to the flavor differences, my preparation methods are very different for this version of pulled pork. First off, instead of marinating the pork in a dry rub, I marinated it in a combo of minced uber-sweet fresh pineapple and loads of garlic for about 24 hours. Secondly – instead of my traditional tried and true methods of low and slow smoking or oven-roasting, I turned to my crockpot. I mean, February is, after all, slow cooker month! Why not celebrate it by letting my pork shoulder turn into dinner while I go out and get drinks, er, do work at an art festival. 😉 I put the marinated shoulder into the slow-cooker with some water and a tub of Knorr Homestyle Chicken Stock, turned that puppy on then walked away. Did you guys get a chance to celebrate the fact that February was slow-cooker month? It’s not to late – in case you forgot it’s a leap year this year! You have a whole day to hop on it! 😉
*I am a professional recipe developer being paid by Knorr as part of the Knorr 4 promotion. While Knorr is footing the bill, all content, recipes and opinions comes directly from my (sometimes offbeat and slightly cheesy) brain. 😉
For the Pork:
3 cups fresh ripe pineapple, minced or food processed
cloves from 1 bulb garlic, peeled & minced
2 tbsp sambal oelek
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper
1 (approximately 5lb) bone-in pork shoulder
1 1/2 cups water
1 tub Knorr Homestyle Chicken Stock
For the BBQ Sauce:
1/2 cup hoisin sauce
1/2 cup rice wine vinegar
1/2 cup fresh ripe pineapple, pureed
1/2 tsp chinese five spice
In a bowl, mix together the first 5 ingredients for the pork to create the marinade. Butterfly the pork shoulder, then stuff with a cup of the marinade. Using butcher's twine, tie the pork shoulder back into one even roast. Place stuffed shoulder into a larger resealable plastic bag. Pour the rest of the marinade over the roast, coating evenly. Seal the plastic bag, removing as much air as possible. Marinate pork for 12 to 24 hours, refrigerated.
Place the pork, marinade, 1 1/2 cups water & Knorr Homestyle Chicken Stock into a slow cooker on the low setting. Slow cook, covered, 8-10 hours or until the pork is falling apart. Remove from slow cooker, cut off butchers twine, then shred the pork, discarding any excess fat or bones.
In a mixing bowl, whisk together all ingredients for the barbecue sauce. Toss the pulled pork with the barbecue sauce until moistened to desired level. Taste and adjust season with more sauce or salt and pepper as desired. Great served on ciabatta rolls with an Asian-style slaw.