During a recent trip to the Seward Co-op, I sent the following text to some pals: “Pulled pork at our place tonight?” Their response: “Yes, please.” I had the pork covered—literally; a Pastures A Plenty pork shoulder roast had been in the slow cooker all day, and would be falling off the bone by 6 p.m. I had all the fixins for red cabbage slaw at home. But I did not have time to get home and make my own BBQ sauce. I made a beeline for the condiments section, hoping to find a barbecue sauce that would work for a saucy, slaw-topped, pulled pork sandwich.
I spotted a new sauce bottle with a catchy name: FanFrikkinTastic Original Style Barbecue. The label told me it was sweet and spicy, all natural, made without preservatives, and gluten and dairy free. It also said it was made in Minneapolis. The sauce looked right in the bottle—not too thick, not too thin, and similar to a Piedmont or North Carolina barbecue sauce in appearance.
At home, I tasted the sauce. It was thin, tangy, slightly sweet, and just a bit spicy—a good match for the rich pulled pork. I pulled the pork and mixed in about 2/3 of the bottle of sauce, and I set aside the other 1/3 for serving with the pork. I served the pulled pork on toasted Minnesota-made Solomon Breads potato rosemary rolls, and topped the sandwiches with some spicy, creamy slaw that I made with red cabbage. The sandwiches were a hit. And the leftovers were even better, since the pulled pork had a chance to marinate in the sauce overnight.
Marie’s Slow Cooker Pulled Pork
1 (~2 lbs.) pork shoulder roast
1 small onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1 bottle of sauce
4 tbsp. of your favorite rub seasoning
Trim the roast. In a hot pan, brown the roast on all sides. Remove the roast from the pan and set aside.
Using good broth (or beer), deglaze the pan. Rub the roast all over with your favorite rub seasoning. Place the onions and garlic in the bottom of your slow cooker. Pour the pan sauce over the onions and garlic. Place the rubbed roast on top of the onions. Cook on high for 5 hours. Turn down to low and cook for another 3 hours.
After letting it cool slightly, pull the bones out of the pork. They should simply slip out. Remove the roast from the slow cooker. In a bowl, pull the tender pork apart, incorporating about 1 cup of sauce and the onions and garlic from the bottom of the slow cooker. Serve on buns with cole slaw. Serve more sauce on the side.