This one’s for anyone who’s gone all day at work, school or sporting events and wants to come home to a delicious meal. It’s also for anyone who just wants a tasty, no-fuss dinner without spending more than 15 minutes prepping it. Are you ready for Slow Cooker Carolina Pulled Pork?
Good, because I’m going to tell you all about it. It involves tender, juicy meat with a nice vinegar kick. It’s got some sweet heat too.
But first, let’s have a little talk about slow cooker meals, or Crock Pot dinners, or whatever you want to call them. I own two slow cookers and am proud of it. They’re a busy cook’s best friend, and every kitchen should have at least a large one.
Second, I’m generally not interested in slow cooker recipes that require only four hours of cooking. (Hello, chicken breasts. I’ll cook you for an hour or less in the oven or on the stove and don’t want to stretch it out needlessly. And what if nobody’s home to take you out of the slow cooker after just a few hours?)
No, I want to use my Crock Pot for food that can stand being cooked for 8-10 hours and then stay on warm for another hour. You see, when I worked full time outside the home, I was gone for 11 hours. I had to rely on large roasts, whole chickens, ribs and the pork shoulder used in this recipe to help me get a falling-off-the-bone meal on the table, instead of a dried-out disaster of a dinner.
And…I didn’t want to bother with anything that had to be seared in a pan on the stove first. I was trying to get ready for work, you know? Can anyone else relate? I thought so.
Back to today’s recipe. I’d never heard of Carolina BBQ until I tried the most delicious pulled pork sandwich a few years ago at Michael Symon’s B Spot. I’m telling you, it’s my favorite thing on the menu there.
My first reaction when I saw the name was, “Che re, Carolina BBQ?” (That’s Neapolitan dialect for “What the heck is Carolina BBQ?”) To be honest, I was worried that it was one of those household terms like “white bread,” known to everyone in America except for children of immigrants. (You may recall that I thought that spongy loaf was “American bread” until I was in my 20s.)
Anyway, I came home and looked it up on the Internet, determined that I had to try to replicate this meal. Instead of a tomato base, Carolina barbeque has a spicy-hot vinegar dressing. In this version, the meat sits in the slow cooker atop quartered onions and gets covered with a brown sugar-and-seasoning rub and Liquid Smoke, followed by part of the dressing (the rest is reserved for after the pork is cooked.) This meal’s really got a lot going on for the taste buds to enjoy.
I usually serve this Slow Cooker Carolina Pulled Pork over brown rice on the first day (it helps to make a big pot of rice on the weekend), and then we eat the leftovers in sandwiches the second day. It’s always a hit around here, and that makes this meal a winner in my book.
Enjoy! And, if you like Cooking with Mamma C, you can subscribe to receive new posts via email.
(Recipe Source: Adapted from The Domestic Front)