Saturday, 17 August 2013

Pulled pork with rum BBQ sauce

I've always been a great collector and adaptor of recipes and while we were cruising this was particularly so. Apart from new ingredients to try it was a very social lifestyle with pot luck suppers several times a week, so I needed to extend my repertoire. I found a recipe for pulled pork whilst we were in Grenada and after some adaptations it became a firm favourite with cruisers and so when we came back to the U.K. I continued to cook it at family events, it was my signature dish! Then people asked me for the recipe and I obliged, not wanting to be mean spirited, but now it's out there I can no longer cook it for clan gatherings.

This weekend we had friends for lunch, old neighbours who we hadn't seen for a while, and I thought the pulled pork would be perfect. And guess what? they asked for the recipe. So I've given up, it's no longer my signature dish and so here it is for all to cook and enjoy.

It's a very forgiving recipe, quantities are adaptable as are the options for making the sauce. Originally it was a stove top dish but using a hob on a boat for several hours was not practical and so I turned it into an oven dish, just bung it in and forget it.

For 6 to 8 people use a 1.2 - 1.4 kg pork shoulder joint and season with salt and pepper. Heat a couple of tablespoons of oil in a large pan and cook the meat gently until it is brown all over and then put into a large casserole dish. If your joint has been strung then leave this on whilst browning as it's easier to turn and cut off once it's in the casserole dish.

Ready to brown

For the sauce you will need:

3 medium onions - sliced
5 garlic cloves - minced
Chilli - the original recipe was for 1 tablespoon of chilli powder but I use a fresh chilli (seeds depends on your personal taste). Also in the original was a teaspoon of liquid smoke which is difficult to get hold of in the U.K so I use a dried chipotle chilli to add a hint of smokiness.
1/4 cup soft brown sugar
1 cup (or so) of ketchup/bbq sauce. I tend to use a smoky BBQ sauce not ketchup or do half and half.
1/2 cup dark rum

Fat garlics ready to mince

Chipotle chillies

Some of the ingredients

Making the sauce

Add the onions and garlic to the pan and sauté until golden brown. Then the rest of the ingredients with the rum last. Pour over the pork joint.

Cover the casserole with foil before putting on the lid so as to make a tight seal and put into the oven at a low heat (100/120C) for 6-8 hours. I tend to cook mine overnight as it can sit a while before the final stage.
Ready to shred

Once fully cooked gently shred the meat with two forks, it should fall apart. It may look a bit sloppy at this point but don't worry. Once the pork has been shredded ramp the heat up in the oven - 180C or so - and put the casserole back for 30 minutes (gently stir every now & then) or until beautifully caramelised, all the fat has been rendered down and the liquid has been reduced.

Serve with a green salad, sliced tomatoes, baguette or large rolls. The idea is for guests to make up their own rolls. I've never yet achieved this - they just pile it on their plate! Possibly because they get more meat that way...

I wasn't quick enough with the camera - half has already gone!


  1. I'm having extreme difficulty commenting on your, or any other Blogger blog. I wish they'd get their act together, as I have seen hosts of negative comments about this issue. Pulled pork is just arriving in France. Good thing!

  2. Thank you for persevering Margaret - I'd miss you if you weren't there! I'm sure there is a similar French version - I'll have to have a look at Andrew's Jane Grigson French pork & charcuterie cook book.

  3. This recipe was fool-proof! Everyone loved the flavour - even those who normally live on chicken nuggets and burgers! Next time I'll do the long cook in my slow cooker overnight to save on electricity. Carol x

    1. Glad it was enjoyed Carol - and good tip about the slow cooker. Maybe I'll put one on my Christmas list...

  4. Ok this is one I have to try. Those ingredients are hard to find in France, but smoked paprika abounds and we have some chipotle sauce and jalapeño sauced shipped over from the USA. A project for next weekend methinks :-)

    1. It's a very flexible recipe - I would think the chipotle sauce would work really well. Enjoy!