Okay, you know how my blog description says I share “successes and failures in the kitchen”? Well, this is one of those times when my experiment didn’t turn out so well. I’d like to blame the Crock Pot, or my husband, or maybe even the cats, but I can’t really do that. I can’t even blame the recipe because… well, I didn’t follow one. Could that be the reason my Crock Pot barbecue didn’t turn out as well as I hoped? Indeed.
In the past, I’ve thrown hunks of meat into the Crock Pot with half a bottle of good barbecue sauce, a little water and a couple of fat onion slices, and the results have been good. I just drain off the grease, shred the meat, add some more barbecue sauce and top with some of the onion. This method has been especially useful for tough cuts of venison. It’s nothing like the flavor of barbecue cooked the old-fashioned way, but it’ll do on a busy weekday.
This time, my error was in the cut of meat. I had purchased some boneless pork chops on clearance at the grocery store and wanted to use them right away. It turns out that even on low, the cut was too small for such an application. And I overcooked it (7 hours), which left us with dry, shredded pork.
In this case, my husband can be credited with saving the day. He recalled a method he used to use when he lived out at the lake years ago. He mixed our shredded pork with more barbecue sauce and put it in a tightly crimped tin foil pouch with the onion. Then he tossed that pouch on the grill long enough for it to “Jiffy Pop,” or plump up. Apparently, this steamed the meat enough to moisten it. By the time we ate it, with some frozen, cooked corn and green beans canned by Mom, it was pretty good. Not great, but good.
Here’s what I learned: I will always use much larger cuts of meat when I make Crock Pot barbecue, such as a pork butt or a beef pot roast. I found a recipe that I SHOULD have used, and I’m going to paste it below the jump in case anyone wants to do a better job than me. It shouldn’t be hard!!! D’oh!
Slow Cooker Pork Barbecue
Makes 12-16 servings
4 to 5 pound pork shoulder (butt) roast
2 large onions, sliced
4 to 6 whole cloves
2 cups water
1 bottle (16 oz) barbecue sauce, your choice
1 large onion, chopped, about 1 cup
Large split buns, toasted or warmed
Place half the sliced onion in the bottom of a slow cooker. Add pork roast, cloves, and water. Add the remaining sliced onion. Cover and cook 8 to 12 hours on LOW. Remove bone and fat from meat. Discard onions, cloves and water. Shred the meat and put it back in the pot. Add chopped onion and the barbecue sauce. Cook another 2 1/2 to 4 hours on LOW, stirring frequently to prevent scorching.
Serve on large split buns.