Tuesday, April 21, 2009

When in Doubt

...take your cue from the host and act like a Greyhound:

This is Watson, our guest since last Friday. He's a crazy-smart, crazy Vizsla. He's happy to be at your heel, unflinchingly intent on supervising your daily run and he'll do the job of fetching a ball at top speed until your arm wants to fall out of it's socket, and none of that will make any noticable dent in his energy level. Even so, I think we might be starting to rub off on him here at casa PupCake. He's a fantastic dog who made a mistake and is in need of a bit of a behavioral tune-up and a new home. If you're a high-energy dog person and you're interested in Watson, contact me.

Then: Warning... MAJOR MEAT PORN AHEAD!!!!
(aka, real women bbq pork shoulder)

I've been working the cook ahead and freeze thing fairly regular these days, and the fruits of my latest labor will be around for a while.

This is the cooked result of ~14lbs of pork shoulder I threw on the grill and let hang out there with some woodchips for the better part of a day.
It came out really amazingly delicious with just about zero effort, and talk about freezer stash.
I shredded all that luscious, succulent meat while I fantasized about tacos and bbq sauce and warm toasty buns:

I read in a recipe someplace that with pork shoulder, the yield of cooked meat is about 60% of the uncooked weight. I didn't weight this when it was finished, but I guess by that figure I ended up with ~8 lbs. of tasty goodness for dinner and leftovers plus two party-size tubs for the freezer. Just in case you and 10 of your closest friends were planning on showin up unannounced and hungry, no worries, I'll get you fed.

But really, pulled pork is the perfect leftover meat because it's tasty in about a hundred different ways and it's quick and easy to pull out of the freezer and heat up in the microwave after work on a weeknight. I told Boy I think it's my desert island meat and preparation method.

We went round one with some tacos with fresh pineapple-black bean salsa and sharp cheddar (also fantastic as nachos) and round two on a bun with bbq sauce and a side of creamy cole slaw. Yum.

So this is me encouraging you not to be afraid of the big cuts of meat, because they're inexpensive and often the most tasty. All I did to this was give it a rub with some bbq seasoning and threw it on the grill, low and slow and basically forgot about it, but the oven would work fine, too. Think ~250 degrees for several hours, until the internal temperature is 190 degrees or higher. And don't you dare go cutting off all that fat on the outside before you roast it, because that stuff turns into tasty, crispy fluff and is really a lot of what makes the whole deal what it is.

P.S. if you can suspend your meat-ethics now and then, Costco is a great place for whole pork shoulder. Grocery stores ususally have them cut up into smaller pieces and priced like steak.

Yum! I love pulled pork! My husband is the griller/smoker in this house, and does pork shoulder and butt so well! Some fruitwood chips, and that lovely smoke ring on the meat... Yum!

We've also found that tossing it into a crock pot on low for a while can make the fat break down even more, and saturate the whole she-bang with utter deliciousness...

I love it on good, soft buns- like butter knots or silver dollar buns- with just a dash of BBQ sauce- KC Masterpiece being the sauce of choice around here. Heaven!
Pork is good - but that rug is FABULOUS!
The pork shoulder is making my mouth water!
Handsome pup! I have an energy ball at home as well, in the form of a Dalmatian. Does Watson get along well with other dogs?
yep, Watson gets along great with other dogs and kitties too. he's well mannered and very obedient.
Pork Shoulder is king on the slow cook grill, and you are right that Costco is the place. We do the the mass cooking too- the shoulder and a couple of chickens all day on our bad ass barrel grill and we have weeks of good eating! I toss some of the rub into the pack out of pulled meat for another layer to the flavor. Wow- I can't wait to fire up the barrel!
the transition from dogs to cooked meat was funny for some reason. Love your blog tho :)
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