Sunday, May 12, 2013

What A Crock! (Of Deliciousness)

We have all heard those old sayings about not judging books by their cover and how beauty is only skin deep.  Well sometimes that happens with the things we eat also.  The bad thing is we eat first with our eyes.  If it is not visually appealing we are imprinted to think it is not going to be good.  It is most likely a survival mechanism. Through the generations of humankind, aversion to ugly food has kept people from eating all sorts of things that could harm or kill them.

Now that we are in a time separated from our hunter/gatherer ancestors we still rely on our sight to keep food safe.  Who among us has not recoiled at the looks of an almost liquid cucumber  or some plastic entombed leftover that has sprouted blue "fur".  No way we are going to eat that!

But what happens when you cook something that is not only perfectly safe to eat and is also delicious. It just doesn't look terribly pretty.  Well. that is exactly what happened to today's post.  My good friend Lynne told me about this method of cooking a pork butt, and I never intended to use this as a recipe here.  But after one quick taste, it was so delicious I knew I had to share it.

Slow Cooker Pork Butt

1 medium pork butt ( I prefer the bone in variety because it keeps the meat moister)
1 jar adobe sauce (if you want to make the sauce from scratch see here
1 can chipotle peppers in adobo, chopped. ( Before you add the entire can taste a tiny bit of the pepper. I used only 2 small peppers and it had enough heat for us)
1 Dr Pepper ( 12 ounces maximum)
1 tablespoon agave
juice of 1 lime
1 sliced onion
1 sliced bell pepper

Spray the crock with a spritz of Pam and put the pork butt in the bottom.   In a medium bowl mix all the other ingredients except the vegetables.  Pour over and around the butt.  Cook on high for 6 hours.  Reset the cooking temperature to low and add the onion and pepper.  Cook another hour or so.  (The best thing about a crock pot is the lack of necessity for specific cook times.  As soon as the veggies are soft it is ready to eat.  You be the judge of the time)  Serve over rice, or noodles, or mashed potatoes, or toast, or anything that suits you and yours.

When I made this I diced the onion and pepper and added it at the beginning of the cooking process. It added a good bit of flavor but it became mush.  Next time I will do as I mentioned earlier.  It would look nicer with the different textures of the pepper and the onion visible.  I will just have rings of onion and long slices of pepper for the visual interest.

Even with the mushy veggies this got thumbs up from everyone and will become something I make regularly.  I had a fairly large pork butt so there were tons of left overs.  I shredded the meat and packed it into 2 bags for the freezer.  This is going to also become a regular taco filling for us.  Next time I will buy the largest pork butt my crock pot will hold and make this again specifically to freeze in packages for tacos. I am also going to cook a couple of whole fryers the same way  and shred it for chicken tacos.

Winner, winner pork butt dinner!

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