Slow cookers don’t get enough loving in the summer. I think it’s because people tend to associate them with stews, roasts, and other heavy fare. I know I’m guilty of it. However, slow cookers are great when it’s just too frickin’ hot to turn on the oven, light up the stove, or stand around a grill for more than ten seconds. You plug them in before work, pick a setting, and when you get home, your house hasn’t heated up a degree and you have a delicious dinner ready. These pulled pork sandwiches are also very summer appropriate.
This sauce is an amalgamation of traditional and Carolina-style barbecue sauce. I used a bit of the classic ketchup and Worcestershire sauce, but included a healthy amount of apple cider vinegar for its sharp tang. I really enjoyed it – so much that I ate it for dinner and two consecutive lunches without getting tired of it. It makes for excellent leftovers and would definitely feed a crowd. The homemade bread and butter pickles and onions really tied everything together, but I’m sure it would be pretty darn delicious with your store-bought pickles of choice.
Barbecue Pulled Pork Sandwich
1 4 lb. pork butt or shoulder
1/4 cup ketchup
1 chipotle in adobo sauce
3 tbs. brown sugar
1 tbs. molasses
2 tsp. ground yellow mustard
1 tbs. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1 tbs. whole black peppercorns
2-3 cups water
3-4 small redskin potatoes
1 medium onion, quartered
Homemade bread and butter pickles (including the onions)
Mix together all ingredients, excepting pork, through the peppercorns. Be sure to smash the chipotle well with a fork. Add water and stir to combine.
Place potatoes, onions, and pork in a 5 qt. slow cooker and pour sauce over. Let marinate overnight.
Cook, covered, about 10-12 hours on low. Carefully remove the pork from the slow cooker and shred with two forks. Raise heat of slow cooker to high and let simmer about 45 minutes until reduced by about a quarter. Taste sauce for seasonings and adjust as necesary. Return pork to the slow cooker and let heat through, about 15 minutes.
Serve pulled pork with some potatoes and onions that have been cooking with the pork, hamburger buns, and bread and butter pickles.