Slow cooker pulled pork BBQ

Y’all will not believe how easy this was! The fact that it cooks in the slow cooker is such a bonus, too, because what’s better than coming home to supper already done?

Slow cooker pulled pork BBQ

Ingredients

  • A pork roast
  • Water
  • Salt, plus onion powder, rib rub, or whatever spices sound good
  • BBQ sauce
  • Buns

Instructions

  1. Put pork roast in a slow cooker and sprinkle on salt and whatever spices your little heart desires; I did onion powder and a rib rub Yankee had in the cabinet. Add enough hot water to fully cover the roast and turn the slow cooker on low; ignore it for the next 8-12 hours or so, depending on size
  2. After it’s cooked through remove meat to a cutting board and chop it up, discarding fat and any bone; pour the water out of the slow cooker (pork broth! Feel free to freeze it for later use)
  3. Serve! Either on a plate or on a bun, topped with your favorite BBQ sauce

Notes

Some folks return the chopped meat to the slow cooker and add in BBQ sauce so they can cook together for a bit; I don’t because I find that cooking the BBQ sauce down makes it too sugary

How easy was that? This is great with green beans!

Bourbon marinated pork roast

Fall is here! After a brutal summer in Nashville I’m welcoming fall comfort food with open arms. First up for us? This fantastic pork roast.

I got the recipe for the marinade from Southern Living; for the actual cooking method I consulted StartCooking.com. This turned out great!

This marinates for at least 12 hours, so it’s great to get going the night before.

Bourbon marinated pork roast

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup bourbon
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup water
  • 1/4 cup canola oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ground black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Pork tenderloin

Instructions

  1. Combine soy sauce through ground ginger in a large zip-top bag or a shallow container; carefully drop in pork and seal or cover and put in the fridge; let it sit at least 12 hours
  2. Preheat oven to 450F; remove pork and discard marinade; sprinkle pork with salt and place in dutch oven or on roasting rack, fat side up
  3. Roast at 450F for ten minutes, then 250F for another 50-80 minutes until a meat thermometer measures 160; let the meat rest for 15 minutes before slicing.

We had this with almost no-knead bread and roasted broccoli. Yum. Happy fall!

Krispy Kreme chocolate cake

Kiddo’s Aunt Burgle came in town for her birthday this year. Party! We always make Krispy Kreme bread pudding when she’s here but I wanted to up the ante a bit with some chocolate and some icing, it being her birthday and all. Want to try it yourself? Break out your fat pants!

Krispy Kreme chocolate cake

Ingredients

  • 18 chocolate glazed Krispy Kreme donuts (a bit stale if you can stand to let them sit around), cut into chunks
  • Six eggs
  • 2 cans condensed milk
  • pinch of salt
  • 7 Tbsp. butter
  • 2 heaping Tbsp. cocoa powder
  • 3 Tbsp. milk
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 1/2 pound powdered sugar
  • a Bundt pan

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F
  2. In a very large bowl thoroughly beat eggs and whisk in salt and condensed milk; stir in donut chunks and let sit for 15 minutes or so, stirring periodically
  3. Grease and flour a Bundt pan (or use an oil-plus-flour spray) and pour donut mixture in; bake for 45 minutes or until set
  4. Toward the end of cooking time make the icing: melt butter in a saucepan and stir in cocoa powder till completely combined; remove from heat and whisk in milk and vanilla, then powdered sugar; keep warm over low heat till needed
  5. Cool cake in pan for ten minutes, then turn onto a plate or rack; immediately pour still-hot icing over top
  6. Reconsider your ban on elastic waist pants

Cheerio Peanut Butter Pumpkins

When General Mills put out the call for bloggers to create some cereal-based treats for Halloween I noticed Cheerios were on the list. CHEERIOS! The foundation of Kiddo’s nutrition. I’m in! These were so much fun to put together, and Kiddo is thrilled with them. The inside is based on an old favorite recipe, and the peanut butter candy coating is from a classic Betty Crocker recipe.

Cheerio Peanut Butter Pumpkins

Ingredients

  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 10 ounces marshmallows
  • 6 cups Cheerios
  • Orange paste food coloring, or red and yellow gel food coloring (not liquid!)
  • 1 bag peanut butter chips
  • 1 can white frosting
  • Green jelly beans

Instructions

  1. In a large microwave-safe bowl melt the butter in the microwave and carefully swirl it around to coat the bottom half or so of the bowl; add the marshmallows and microwave at 50% power till marshmallows are melted; stir in Cheerios
  2. Grease up your hands or some disposable gloves with butter or oil spray and carefully (it’s hot!) shape Cheerio mixture into pumpkins, squeezing them pretty firmly so they don’t fall apart. Let them cool on wax or parchment paper while you mix the peanut butter coating
  3. Put a two-quart saucepan over low heat and melt peanut butter chips, stirring constantly, until just barely melted and thoroughly smooth; remove from heat and stir in frosting and coloring. Have fun with the color! Add a little at a time till it looks just right to you (I put mine in the stand mixer to mix the color in; the mixture is pretty stiff). If the mixture is cool enough to handle after all that mixing, proceed to step 4; if it’s not then set it in the fridge till it’s safe to work with
  4. It’s play time! Take small amounts of the peanut butter mixture and pat it onto the Cheerio pumpkins till the Cheerios are fully coated, then use the edge of a rubber scraper to make lines in each pumpkin. Finally press one green jelly bean in the top of the pumpkin for a stem. All done!
  5. Keep covered in the refrigerator for storage; chill for at least one hour before servin

Happy Halloween!

Fresh limeade

Summer’s not quite over yet (as evidenced by the 90+ degree September we’re currently having in Nashville), so I thought I’d pass this one along while there’s still some heat in the air.

You can make this with lemon, lime, key lime or any combination thereof; today I had a bunch of limes so limeade it is.

Fresh limeade

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 cups water
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups lime juice (or lemon or key lime)
  • Additional 4 cups water

Instructions

  1. Heat the water and sugar together until the sugar is dissolved; you can do this in a saucepan on the stove or in a glass Pyrex in the microwave
  2. Let the sugar mixture cool and stir in juice and additional water
  3. Serve over ice, ideally on a veranda.

This may or may not be great with a splash of vodka. I haven’t heard either way. Ahem.

Brined pork chops with white gravy

When The Yankee and I were first dating he announced one night that he was making me pork chops for supper.

Boy howdy.

I, ah, was not a fan of the chop of pork. The pork chops of my childhood were strikingly reminiscent of the sole of a shoe. An old shoe. In my mother’s defense, the recommendation at the time was to cook pork to something like 4,000 degrees, and it was quite a challenge to make it edible (enter: applesauce).

Now, fortunately, pork is safer. And the pork from our CSA? Also yummalicious. These pork chops in particular? Awesomeness. When you add in a brine? Oh my moly. I am never again making pork chops without brining; it’s that good.

Brined pork chops with white gravy

Ingredients

  • Pork chops (I made two)
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • water and ice
  • 2 Tbsp. AP flour + more for coating pork chops
  • Salt, pepper
  • Oil: olive, vegetable, or bacon grease — whatever floats your boat (and your pork chops)
  • 1 cup milk (I always use whole milk)

Instructions

  1. Whisk together sugar and salt in cold water, and lay pork chops in the water; add more water if needed to cover chops, and add plenty of ice. Let it sit for at least 20 minutes or so; I did 45 minutes
  2. Preheat oven to 350F
  3. Drain pork chops and heat oil in a heavy skillet, ideally cast iron. When the oil is heated dredge pork chops in flour and put immediately into oil to fry until brown on both sides. Check the temperature of the pork; assuming it’s brown on both sides but isn’t quite done in the middle, spoon off 2 Tbsp. of the grease into a second skillet, then put the chops in the 350 oven to finish cooking
  4. In the second skillet whisk in 2 Tbsp. flour to the 2 Tbsp. of pork fat till smooth; whisk in 1 cup milk and heat till bubbling and thickened
  5. Serve chops with gravy

Guacamole

On a trip to Hilton Head Island the Yankee and I discovered this dish: guacamole topped with crab meat. This is a win. I set out to recreate it as soon as we got home, and I’m pretty pleased with the result! This is a huge party hit, too; I highly recommend.

Guacamole

Ingredients

  • Two ripe avocados
  • Two Roma tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, minced
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 cayenne pepper
  • Kosher salt to taste, but about 1/2 tsp.
  • Juice from one lime
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced (or some onion powder if you hate the crunch of raw onion)
  • Eight ounces lump crab meat, drained
  • Chips (obviously)

Instructions

  1. Scoop out the avocado into a bowl and mash with a fork
  2. Stir in tomatoes, pepper, cumin, pepper, salt and lime juice, plus onion if you’re using it
  3. Top with crab meat and serve with chips