Monday, August 1, 2011

Deli Meat Dilemma

Saturday afternoon I decided to do an impromptu trip to the grocery, called Mr P to see what we wanted to make for lunches and dinners this week.  His go-to solution was to get lunchmeat.  We could have made sandwiches, I could put it on salads, and the best part, no cooking and turning our little apartment into a sauna.  I took my number at the deli counter, and stood in front of the big processed chunks of plastic-wrapped deli meats trying to decide which to buy.  I thought to myself, "if we are going to get deli meat, we better get something that we will actually want to eat."  With that in mind, I picked out 2 kinds, pastrami and peppered turkey... which happened to be the most expensive meats in the entire counter at $10/lb!  For lunch and dinner, we would be lucky to get a full week of meals for $20 in just MEAT!!  Ridiculous, right??

So, I handed my number to someone else, and decided that I was gonna get chicken breast from the meat section, which would at most be $2.99/lb, but Shoprite usually has it for cheaper, sometimes $1.99/lb.  Before reaching the chicken, though, I walked past the beef and thought "hmm...bbq beef?"  But the big chunk of chuck roast was $20 too!  Then, the pork section.  Pulled pork?  I looked at the big chunks of shoulder cuts, and they were only $1.49/lb!!!  Score!  Into the basket it went.  8 pounds of pork for $8 cheaper than the 2 pounds of deli meat I was about to get.  Sure there would be some fat and liquid that would drain off, but still, way cheaper (and healthier without all the additives they put in processed deli meat).

Remember when I said getting a slow-cooker was a good idea?  Here we are using it again!  When we make pulled pork, we never cook it in bbq sauce.  We use a dry rub, then if we want to do other things with the pulled pork (besides slathering it in bbq sauce and putting it on a hamburger bun) we can.

Here is the recipe as per an email from Mr P, my friend wanted the recipe a few weeks back. We also had leftover dry rub, so when we made the pulled pork this time we didn't have to make it again! (followed by the recipes for healthy(er) cole slaw and bbq sauce,  the best way to eat pulled pork!)

Pulled Pork

Pork Cut:
Pork butt with bone in (pork butt is actually the shoulder, I know, weird)


Equal Parts:
Garlic Powder
Onion Powder

Half Parts:
Cayenne Pepper
Chili Powder
Red Chili Flakes (More if you would like more heat)

5 times as much:
Brown Sugar

Other ingredients:
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar per 1 tbsp of ketchup

Mix dry ingredients thoroughly, then rub half the mixture on the pork.  Marinate, overnight if you have the time, in a covered bowl or container.  Place in crockpot on low for 20 hours if possible or until the pork starts to flake apart or the bone looks like it is able to fall off.  If you have a small steam rack that fits in the crock pot that would be good to lay the pork on so then the pork doesn’t sit in the fat (I don’t mind fat).  Pull pork apart with forks and then sprinkle more of the seasoning onto the pork a teaspoon at a time.  Don’t add anymore salt, the pork is supposed to taste like pork and not sausages.  Drizzle apple cider vinegar mixture to the pork then taste to see if the pork has enough bite.  Cover with your favorite BBQ sauce then serve with bread, over rice, in burritos or however you would like.

How it looks after the dry rub, before cooking in the crock pot

Healthy(er) Cole Slaw


1 smaller sized head of green cabbage
3/4 cup plain Greek yogurt (fat free if you want)
1/4 cup light mayo
2 tbsp white vinegar
1 tbsp sugar
salt and pepper to taste

Clean cabbage, discard outer leaves, and chop into pieces as small or as large as you like, place in bowl.  We used the attachment to the food processor that shreds it into itty bitty pieces like diner slaw. Mix the yogurt, mayo, vinegar, and sugar in separate bowl.  Add salt and pepper to taste. Add to cabbage and serve!  If your cabbage is chopped in bigger pieces, let sit in fridge for 1 hour or so.

This week we are eating pulled pork sammiches with this cole slaw and Mr P's Very Vinegary BBQ sauce... yum!  This cole slaw is the best, because you get the creaminess like it has a lot of mayo, but the yogurt makes it much healthier.  Since yogurt doesn't have a strong flavor when it's used in cooking, the mayo takes over, even though there's much less mayo then yogurt (did you even ever think about substituting plain yogurt for some of the mayo?  neither did I!  We do the same with tuna salad and chicken salad).  

Stay tuned for when it's 0 degrees outside and we will make homemade hamburger buns and make pulled pork again!  For now we will have to settle for store-bought....  I suppose I can deal with only homemade bbq sauce :P


p.s. Mucho thanks to Mr P for taking lots of how-to photos!  I'm slacking in that part so far....

1 comment:

Jo Dhesi said...

Sounds and looks great!!!!