Tis the Season for Barbecues and seeing as how we just returned from our first family trip back to Nebraska, we were well prepared for last weekend’s event that my mother-in-law had been planning for several weeks. A few days beforehand, the husband decided to make his famous pulled pork and I, being the generous soul that I am, decided to rid our garden of an abundance of ripe rhubarb and make one of my favorite kinds of pie.
And while they might sound relatively difficult and time consuming, they’re really not; well at least not the pie. The pork takes approximately 18 hours but it’s not what I would call difficult (my favorite part is that we get to spend a Friday night at home relaxing with a bottle of wine). It does make messy dishes though – or maybe that’s just my messy husband. Either way – here’s the Wanco way to a surefire success at your next barbecue.
Dustin’s Pulled Pork
- One giant pork shoulder/butt (anywhere from 8 – 12 lbs)
- Brine in salt water for 1 – 2 hours
- Smother in Blackstrap Molasses and sear on all sides in a very hot pan (about 10 min. total)*
- In the meantime, heat a charcoal BBQ or smoker to ~425 degrees (We have a Big Green Egg, which is worth every penny! A great Father’s Day gift idea… if you’re still looking) and soak cherry wood or hickory chips in water.
- Put the Pork on the BBQ for one hour at 425.
- Add the wood chips on top of the burning charcoal and reduce heat to 200 degrees. Leave pork on overnight. The temperature will maintain itself (again…the miracle of the Big Green Egg). Get up early the next morning to check the temperature and adjust accordingly (if the heat gets too low, simply throw the pork in the oven for an hour or so at about 300, bring the BBQ back to 200 and keep on smokin’. You’ll know when it’s ready to go back on the BBQ when the house starts to smell like bacon).
- Use a meat thermometer to determine when it’s done: 16 – 18 hours.
- Once the pork is off the BBQ, shred using two serving forks, add your favorite sauce (we like Sweet Baby Rays) and you’re all set to serve.
Typically, we make a batch of Asian-style coleslaw while we wait and the serve with pickles and sweet Hawaiian roles resulting in the most delicious pulled pork sliders of all time. You’re welcome.
*This is the part where my husband gets messy…I just follow him around with a washcloth and dish scrubber.
And for dessert….
Betsy’s Garden Fresh Rhubarb Pie
As I mentioned, we have a rhubarb plant in our garden (it’s actually the only thing in our garden at the moment) that was getting ready to go to flower so it was more than ready to be picked and pied.
Picking rhubarb is really easy. Look for the pieces that are about the size of a celery; wedge your index finger down as far toward the root as possible and it will pop right off. If they’re too big, the pieces will be hard and bitter and if they’re too small, well…they’re just not ready yet.
- Gather 4 – 5 cups worth of rhubarb, about 12 – 15 stalks, depending on size. I typically measure by filling the empty pie pan until its slightly overflowing since fruit pies always reduce when cooking – and I like giant pies.
- Cut the leaves off, rinse and chop into small pieces (make sure to throw the leaves in the trash immediately or put in a safe place as they are poisonous to animals. On the bright side though, they can be used as an all-natural pesticide).
- Combine 1 1/3 cups sugar (I used coconut sugar which is a 1:1 sub) and 6 Tablespoons of flour
- Place ¼ of the sugar/flour mixture into the bottom of a pie pan that is covered in pie crust (I’m lazy and use pre-made dough)
- Place the rhubarb into the pie pan, put the rest of the sugar/flour mixture on top and dot with no more than 1 tablespoon of butter.
- Cover with a second pie crust and baste with one beaten egg white
- Bake at 450 degrees for 15 minutes
- Reduce heat to 350 and cook for approximately 40 – 45 minutes.
See, I told you…ridiculously easy! Enjoy!