Monday, January 12, 2015

Blame Helena In the Kitchen: Pork Shoulder Bone In With Sweet Potatoes and Carrots

After 11 hours, it was finally ready. And was good. Really good. Ouch, I just broke my arm.

I must give Aaron McCargo Jr. of the Food Network credit for providing me with the basic guidelines on roasting my pork shoulder to perfection. First, I prepared a rub comprised of garlic, salt, pepper, minced onions and extra virgin olive oil, mixing all together, and then bathing my pork shoulder with it. I let it sit for about 45 minutes. While allowing the meat to enjoy its marinade, I plopped a couple of tablespoons of coconut oil into my cast iron dutch oven and placed it into a 425 degree Fahrenheit oven. I love coconut oil. A gentleman named Bob at Sprouts in Clairemont turned me onto it. Coconut oil seems to have many health and practical benefits, but I haven't tested them so don't take my word as gospel. You can research it benefits on and judge for yourself. However, I can testify coconut oil is a great cooking medium, for it is slow to burn at high temperatures during the cooking process.

It was time. I placed my roast in the hot oil and then put it in the oven, allowing the 'fat cap' (facing up) to get all crispy and good. After about 45 minutes, I reduced the temperature to 285 degree Fahrenheit, allowing the low heat to work it's magic. It was about 11:30am. I took a nap.

Dangit! It was 4:30pm and I'd overslept. I jumped up and went to the kitchen to prep my sweet potatoes, carrots and celery. I added the veggies to my dutch over and covered it. I returned to the living room, lied down and snuggled beneath the covers. At 5:30pm, I checked on my meal. The meat looked good, the veggies were a little tender, but it wasn't cooking as it should. I turned up the heat to 350 degree Fahrenheit and returned to my perch on the sofa to watch the Golden Globe Awards.

Within 15 minutes, my apartment filled with the smell of porky goodness. I resisted the urge to go and check on it. At 7pm, I checked and found pork magic happening before my eyes. The meat was sizzling, the veggies had softened and cooked down. I spooned out some oil (I need a turkey baster).

By 8pm I was going nuts. It smelled so good! I prodded the roast with my spoon. Could it be? It was starting to pull apart. I accepted the fact that I wasn't going to eat at a decent hour. I decided I would take it out at 10pm.

At 1030pm, I took the roast out of the oven.


The meat was falling off the bone. Although I don't normally eat so late, I couldn't resist. I tried to slice it, but the meat fell apart. I gave up and spooned some out, along with sweet potatoes, carrots, and a bit of celery. I didn't need my teeth, but went through the motions of chewing anyway, allowing the savory meat to fill and comfort me, soothing my soul.

I should have made a pot greens to go along with it.

  • Prepare your meat the day before to allow it time to marinate
  • Slow cook it overnight at 200 degrees (you know your oven, use your own discretion. I don't want you burn down your place)
  • In the morning, turn it up to at least 325 degree Fahrenheit to finish cooking
  • Enjoy a nice IPA as you while away the hours awaiting porky perfection. My pick: Iron Fire The Devil Within DIPA, checking in at a sinfully hoppy ALC 9.5.

Keep on ridin' your pork high. Porky dreams!

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