I think I may have just found a new way to gain favour and influence over my teenage son. As anyone with an adolescent boy in their house will tell you they seem to be perpetually hungry and always on the prowl for something to eat. Favourite stance? Hands on hips peering into an open fridge. Favourite past time? Demolishing everything in sight.
Last weekend, staring down a packed weekend of sports commitments, I decided to get organised and prepared a huge pot of slow roasted pulled pork shoulder in advance. To be effortlessly converted into the ultimate dude food at the end of a tiring day. Pulled pork sliders. Flavoured with Asian spices, the pulled pork didn’t take much in the way of preparation. Just a long, slow simmer in my trusty blue Le Creuset pot. To make things easier, once I had browned the pork shoulder and prepared the sauce on the stove top, I placed the entire pot into a slow oven and went about my day.
My reward? A meltingly tender, gorgeously flavoured albeit enormous shoulder of pork. Of course I studiously ignored the inevitable jibes of just how many people I was intending to feed, and do believe I well and truly had the last laugh. Six hungry diners feasted on Slow Roasted Pulled Pork Sliders With Asian Slaw on Saturday night, with enough leftovers for toasted sandwiches on Sunday and school lunches on Monday. Rich, juicy and flavoursome a little really does go a long, long way. These are definitely making a regular appearance on my weekend menu as the weather cools. Perfect dude food as we head into the Winter sport season.
Slow Roasted Pulled Pork Sliders With Asian Slaw
For the Pulled Pork
2 kg boneless pork shoulder roast
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 brown onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons finely grated fresh ginger
1 tin (400g) diced or crushed tomatoes
1/ 3 cup hoisin sauce
1/4 cup fish sauce
2 tablespoons hot chill sauce
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 cup water
sea salt freshly ground black pepper
PREHEAT oven to 150C.
HEAT oil in a heavy, oven proof casserole style pot (I used Le Creuset) over a medium flame. Season pork with plenty of sea salt and freshly ground pepper and quickly sear on all sides until well browned, about 3 minutes per side. Remove to a plate and set aside
ADD onion, garlic and ginger to the pot. Cook until soft and fragrant, stirring occasionally.
ADD tomatoes, hoisin sauce, fish sauce, chili sauce, brown sugar and water. Gently stir the sauce and simmer on low heat for about 5 minutes until all the ingredients are well combined.
RETURN the pork shoulder to the pot, ensuring it is well covered by the sauce.
BAKE for 3-4 hours, until it is soft and tender and shreds easily with a fork.
REMOVE the pot from the oven and allow the pork to rest for about 15 minutes before shredding the whole shoulder.
RETURN the shredded pork to the sauce and stir well to combine. The pork will absorb the sauce and become incredibly moist and juicy.
For The Asian Slaw
1/2 Chinese cabbage, finely shredded
1/4 small red cabbage, finely shredded
2 carrots, peeled and shredded
4 radishes, thinly sliced
3 long green spring onions, sliced on the diagonal into long thin strips
100g bean sprouts, trimmed
1 long red chilli, sliced on the diagonal into long thin strips
1 cup coriander leaves
1 cup mint leaves
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
1/2 long red chilli, seeded and finely diced
juice and finely grated zest of 1 lime
1 tablespoon palm sugar, shaved (or substitute brown sugar)
IN a large mixing bowl toss together cabbage, carrot, spring onion, radish, bean sprouts, chilli and herbs.
COMBINE the lime zest and juice, oil, rice wine vinegar, palm sugar, fish sauce, garlic and chilli in a jar. Shake until sugar has dissolved. Taste for a balance of sweet, sour and salty flavours, adjusting as required.
TOSS the dressing through the slaw ingredients.
To Assemble The Sliders
Feeds a hungry crowd.
18-24 small dinner sized soft rolls
1/3 cup mayonnaise
Pulled Pork (recipe above)
Asian Slaw (recipe above)
SLICE open the rolls and spread the bases with a little mayonnaise.
TOP with a heaped tablespoon of Asian slaw followed by a generous amount of pulled pork. Just enough to comfortably fill your roll without spilling over the sides when covered with the tops of the rolls.
TRANSFER to a platter and serve immediately.