Last weekend we had a blast! We did what I like the most in life: staying at home cooking with the family (family = Marilyn, “white husband” and our dogs)! lol
Definitely, I am a homebody-type person way more than Marilyn! I have been like this since I remember. I remember when I was a teenager my mom used to talk to me very worried, asking why I stayed inside the house all the time! I love being at home! I feel safe, I can be with my dogs that I love so much, I can be creative and productive or simply watch my favorite shows. At the same time I am glad Marilyn is not like me. She is the one that finds something for us to do all the time. Always when we go out (because it’s not often) I feel super excited and I dress up like I am going to walk the red carpet, I enjoy it like it’s going to be my last outdoor activity. I am being serious! lol
So, Marilyn has wanted to smoke pork on the grill since summer started, so finally we got all the ingredients together to make it. While she was taking care of the grill I was making a delicious Brazilian dessert (I will post this week), “white husband” was taking care of our yard and the dogs were around the grill looking for food. I know it seems like such a simple thing to say that I a had a blast this weekend… But this kind of day is what makes me happy, very happy! Almost everything we did we made a video using our Instagram that I loooooveeeee! I hope you had an amazing weekend too, spending the day in the way you really enjoy. I hope you have a great week! Now it’s time to bring “Ms. American” chef Chudda…
OK!!!! So now you all know how much I love to grill….it’s all I’ve been doing all summer…this BEAUTIFUL summer we’ve been having here in the Northwest!! But for me, the thing I love the most is smoking meat on the grill!! For me it’s so much fun!! The night before I prep my meat, whatever it is. Then the next day I get up early in the morning, clean the grill, get the coals and the applewood ready and then prepare the meat to put on the grill and smoke it for 6-8 hours.
I spend the whole day outside in the yard, with the dogs, my best friend Mark, Ludmilla, and my music. In between checking the meat I work in the yard, have snacks and drinks and just enjoy the whole day…it’s like a party for me in my own home! I can’t explain the excitement I have when I know I’m going to be on the grill all day!!!
So, one of my favorite things to smoke is pork butt (pork shoulder), for pulled pork sandwiches. Smoking meat is a process that takes time, patience and knowledge of the meat and what you are trying to achieve. When I was in culinary school I never learned anything about smoking meat…it was something I learned from fellow students and mostly from reading and studying about it..I bought every kind of cookbook in the world on every type of food that I could get my hands on!!! So, I learned to smoke and cook meats this way by trial and error, reading everything about grilling and smoking and through friends that share the same love that I have for cooking.
One of the best resources I had and still use to this day are books written by Steven Raichlen …He is a barbecue expert and his books are great guides for information on grilling, barbecuing and smoking so check him out!! Besides having the pork butt to smoke we also had 1/4 of a whole pig that was in our freezer from our Brazilian Christmas Dinner (I bought a whole pig to roast in the oven, Brazilian style).
( I used the indirect method for cooking the pork so I used a smokebox and applewood, but you can smoke on a regular grill as well. ) So, I had a grill FULL of pork that was slow smoking for 8 hours…the smell was amazing, the color and look of the pork was perfect and we had the BEST pulled pork sandwiches!!! So my friends…here it is…let me know if you try it, what you think and how you changed it to make it your own as I did! Have a blast and love your food and everything you put into it!!!!
This recipe is from Steven Raichlen’s Barbecue Bible…it’s a great way to start learning to smoke pork, learn about rubs and different styles of cooking…
For the rub (optional)
- 1 tablespoon mild paprika
- 2 teaspoons light brown sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons hot paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon celery salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
For the barbecue
- 1 Boston butt (bone-in pork shoulder roast; 5 to 6 pounds), covered with a thick (1/2 inch) layer of fat
- Vinegar Sauce
- 10 to 12 hamburger buns
- North Carolina–Style Coleslaw
1. If using the rub, combine the mild paprika, brown sugar, hot paprika, celery salt, garlic salt, dry mustard, pepper, onion powder, and salt in a bowl and toss with your fingers to mix. Wearing rubber or plastic gloves if desired, rub the spice mixture onto the pork shoulder on all sides, then cover it with plastic wrap and refrigerate it for at least 3 hours, preferably 8.
If not using the rub, generously season the pork all over with coarse (kosher or sea) salt and freshly ground black pepper; you can start cooking immediately.
2. Set up the grill for indirect grilling and place a drip pan in the center.
If using a gas grill, place all of the wood chips in the smoker box and preheat the grill to high; when smoke appears, reduce the heat to medium.
If using a charcoal grill, preheat the grill to medium-low and adjust the vents to obtain a temperature of 300°F.
3. When ready to cook, if using charcoal, toss 1 cup of the wood chips on the coals. Place the pork shoulder, fat side up, on the hot grate over the drip pan. Cover the grill and smoke cook the pork shoulder until fall-off-the-bone tender and the internal temperature on an instant-read meat thermometer reaches 195°F, 4 to 6 hours (the cooking time will depend on the size of the pork roast and the heat of the grill). If using charcoal, you’ll need to add 10 to 12 fresh coals to each side every hour and toss more wood chips on the fresh coals; add about 1/2 cup per side every time you replenish the coals. With gas, all you need to do is be sure that you start with a full tank of gas. If the pork begins to brown too much, drape a piece of aluminum foil loosely over it or lower the heat.
4. Transfer the pork roast to a cutting board, loosely tent it with aluminum foil, and let rest for 15 minutes.
5. Wearing heavy-duty rubber gloves if desired, pull off and discard any skin from the meat, then pull the pork into pieces, discarding any bones or fat. Using your fingertips or a fork, pull each piece of pork into shreds 1 to 2 inches long and 1/8 to 1/4 inch wide. This requires time and patience, but a human touch is needed to achieve the perfect texture.
If patience isn’t one of your virtues, you can finely chop the pork with a cleaver (many respected North Carolina barbecue joints serve chopped ‘cue). Transfer the shredded pork to a nonreactive roasting pan. Stir in 1 to 1 1/2 cups of the vinegar sauce, enough to keep the pork moist, then cover the pan with aluminum foil and place it on the grill for up to 30 minutes to keep warm.
6. To serve, mound the pulled pork on the hamburger buns and top with coleslaw. Let each person add more vinegar sauce to taste.
2 cups cider vinegar
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons ketchup
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar, or more to taste
5 teaspoons salt, or more to taste
4 teaspoons hot red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
Combine the vinegar, ketchup, brown sugar, salt, red pepper flakes, black pepper, and white pepper with 1 1/3 cups of water in a nonreactive medium-size bowl and whisk until the sugar and salt dissolve. Taste for seasoning, adding more brown sugar and/or salt as necessary; the sauce should be piquant but not quite sour.
1 small or 1/2 large head green cabbage (about 2 pounds), cored
1 cup Vinegar Sauce or more to taste
Have a great week!
Beijos e Tchau!
Marilyn Chudda and Ludmilla!