Tag Archives: pork

Chipotle Dr. Pepper Pulled Pork

Texas.  Dr. Pepper.  These two go together like beans & rice, Oreos & milk, sour cream & onion…you get the idea.  The dark-hued bubbly soda pop was created in the late 1800’s in a city known as Waco, Texas.  This “Texas Native” is a proud product in these parts…

So after watching my beloved Food Network, it was only natural that I tweaked a recipe to fit my mood that day.  This recipe is now so easy, because it’s a crockpot meal!  Every busy family’s favorite kind!  Did the crockpot inventor ever win a noble peace prize by chance???  He or she can have my vote!!

The Starting Lineup

  • 4-6 lb pork butt/shoulder
  • 2 cans of Dr. Pepper
  • 3.5-7 oz of chipotle in adobo
  • 1 onion, quartered
  • Salt & Pepper
  • Chili powder
  • Non-stick spray

Optional

  • Coleslaw
  • Sandwich buns 

Spray your crockpot with the non-stick spray.  Easy cleanup is our friend!!  Lay your quartered onion into the large ceramic bowl.  Onto the pork…liberally sprinkle all over with your salt & pepper.   To taste, add a bit of chili powder as well.    Place the pork butt on top of the onions.  Next pour your can of chipotles (plus sauce) over the pork.  After that spicy can is empty, simply pour each can of Dr. Pepper over everything.  This is all ridiculously simple.      Place the lid onto the filled crockpot and turn on low.  I leave ours (untouched) for an easy 8-10 hours.  This comes out gloriously tender.  Everytime.    Now, how you decide to serve this is your own call, but I’ll tell you a little bit on how we enjoy ours…

I make a super simple slaw (precut cabbage mix, a bit o mayo, a bit of granulated sugar, a couple dashes of apple cider vinegar and some S&P…not too wet here).

I then slice, in half, some bakery sandwich/hamburger rolls and toast them. Pile on that fall-apart Chipotle Dr. Pepper Pork, an extra drizzle or two of the sweet & spicy sauce and good helping of crunchy slaw.  Never fails.   

Pork Chilé Verde 

Does everyone know that I just adore mexican food by now??  Yes, we eat this Latin culture’s goodies at least thrice weekly.  Salivating now.

What seems like a complicated, difficult and time-consuming dish, actually isn’t.  I prepped this meal in 30 minutes and then was free to walk away for hours.  HOURS my friends…all while my house took on the most heavenly aroma…

The Starting Lineup

  • 3-4 lb pork butt/shoulder
  • 1 1/2 lbs tomatillos 
  • 2 onions, chopped
  • 2 poblano peppers
  • 2 jalapeño peppers
  • 1/2 cup cilantro
  • 8 cloves garlic (divided 5/3)
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 Tbsp mexican oregano
  • 2 Tbsp cumin (divided 1/1)
  • Salt & Pepper
  • EVOO   

Alright, let’s rinse and prep those veggies!  Mince the garlic cloves, chop the onions….rinse and pat dry the hot peppers and husk and rinse the tomatillos (these are actually kind of ‘sticky’, just an fyi ;)) 

 Set your oven to broil and line a baking sheet with foil.  Cut each husked tomatillo in half horizontally.  Lay these cut-side DOWN onto the sheet, along with the poblanos, jalapeños and 5 of the garlic cloves (leave the skin ON the garlic here).  

 

^^^Watch closely while broiling.  Turn the peppers as needed, let ‘blister’ all over (the peppers are often done before the tomatillos).  Also, if needed, turn your sheet pan 180 degrees occasionally during the broiling period.^^^

When peppers are good and done, place in a paper lunch sack and close.  Allows to steam in bag for 10 minutes, while tomatillos finish broiling.

Onto the blender!  Add in the roasted tomatillos (skin and all), cilantro, roasted garlic (squeeze out of the papery skin), the roasted and steamed peppers (waxy skin removed), 1 tsp cumin and 1 tsp salt.  Blend!! 

  

Your verde sauce is now complete!  Easy right??!  We’ll keep this in the blender and set aside.

Ok, pork prepping time.  Chop up the two onions and mince the remaining 3 cloves garlic. 

 

With a sharp knife, carefully cut the pork into rough 1″x1″ cubes.  Season liberally with kosher salt & pepper and a bit of cumin.

Heat a large heavy bottomed pot with 2 Tbsp’s of EVOO to med-high heat.  Once hot, add in the pork (about 1/4 at a time, do not overcrowd).  Sear the pieces on each side for 1 minute and set aside. 

 Once the pork is finished searing, add the onion to that same pot.  As it starts “sweating” and releasing its juices, scrape up to those delicious brown bits from the bottom of your pan. *please use the proper utensils to not scratch your cookware.  Toss the seared pork back into the onion filled pot along with the minced garlic. 

 
Ok, we’re almost ready to walk away for a few hours…just a couple more steps!

Pour in the verde sauce you made just minutes ago…looking and smelling good, isn’t it?? 

 

Next, add in the 2 cups of chicken stock and the mexican oregano.  Stir.  

   Bring to a boil, reduce to a simmer and cover.  Let the Pork Chilé Verde simmer on low for at least 3 hours…the longer the better really!!

I like to serve ours with a dollop of sour cream, garnish of fresh cilantro and warm tortillas..enjoy!! 

 

Hawaiian BBQ Pizza

Leftovers.  Yep, this insanely good pizza idea came from a remaining beer braised pork I made the other night.  My family, of course, loves pizza in any flavor so with what I already had on hand and a quick trip to the market for a fresh pineapple, dinner was good to go!!

Your average commercial ‘Hawaiin Pizza’ consists of ham/pineapple and marinara..but let’s change it up and make it BETTER!  Now I can’t say that in Hawaii they’re huge on southern BBQ but I know they’re big on pork!  This shredded pork is THE way to go.   …However, I’ll give you credit if you use chicken or cut up ham, I mean you just can’t mess this up!

The Starting Lineup

  • 1 recipe or store bought pizza dough (Pizza Dough | Railroad Wife)
  • 1-2 cup braised pork….chicken or ham would work too (Beer Braised Pork | Railroad Wife)
  • 6 strips bacon, cooked & crumbled
  • 1 cup BBQ sauce (I prefer thinner, ‘Texas Style’ Franklin Barbeque), plus more for a drizzle garnish.
  • 2 cups grated cheese (I.e. mozzarella, Jack, or cheddar blend)
  • 1 cup fresh cut pineapple
  • 1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion, soaked in ice water to remove some ‘bite’
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Cilantro, chopped for garnish
  • Jalapeño, thinly sliced for garnish (optional..but you know I did!) 

Whether you bought dough from your local pizzeria, made your own in advance or even bought a Boboli premade crust..this WILL be good!  So now that the dough is in some form ‘ready’, let us prep the rest of our ingredients! 

 *One more assumption of mine, as you read above I am using some of my leftover Beer Braised Pork.  If you did not make that recipe or have any leftovers, here is where you will season and cook or grill your chicken.  Precooked and self-cubed ham would be fine too.

The bacon!!!   In a skillet, cook the always delicious bacon to your desired doneness..whether that be chewy or crispy.  I’m a crispy gal, but to each their own. 

 
As that bacon is frying away, let’s cut the onion.  This gives the pizza a nice bite, BUT since I don’t want the onion too overpowering, we soak!  Yep, after you thinly slice the purplish-red veggie, place the slices into a cool ice bath of water.  This will take the harshness out of the onion..also a great trick for sandwich making.  When ready to assemble, just pat dry with a paper towel.

 

Pineapple time!  Ok, this fruit can be quite intimidating.  I mean it almost hurts to just hold, let alone find the flesh.  ..but seriously, it cuts ridiculously easy and you’re done before you can even use a can opener.  I just cut into bite size pieces.  If you’re truly at a loss, watch a YouTube video…  

  

 

Well, that’s about it!  Your main toppings are done!  Veggies and fruit cut, meat/poultry cooked and bacon is done and crumbled….assembly time!

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees or to your dough’s package instructions.  While preheating, place your pizza stone OR a baking sheet in oven to warm as well.

If needed, roll out your dough..I like a bit of cornmeal under my crust for added texture.  Also, do a Tbsp layer of EVOO over the top of your crust. 

   Next, ladle a nice amount of your preferred bbq sauce and about 3/4th of your cheese. 

I then add the shredded pork, bacon, red onions and pineapple down..followed by the remaining grated cheese. 


Place your dough on a pizza stone (or your dough with parchment paper under it, on an UPSIDE-DOWN, large baking sheet).  Cook in your 400 degree oven for about 20 minutes or according to your premade dough directions.  
Garnish with some freshly chopped cilantro, an extra drizzle of BBQ sauce and perhaps some thinly sliced jalapeños.  Enjoy!! 

 

Bacon Bolognese

This is quite likely the best bolognese this side of… well, somewhere..  It has bacon in it, yes, bacon!  Which is actually quite authentic of bolognese recipes.

It’s not enough of the pork delicacy to think you’re eating breakfast or a strange BLT, but just enough to add some smokiness and an underlying flavor to the dish.

The Starting Lineup

  • 1/2 package (6-8 strips) bacon
  • 8-12oz ground beef
  • 8-12oz ground pork
  • 28oz can of quality whole tomatoes, hand crushed
  • 1 cup chicken broth/stock
  • 1 cup of dry white wine
  • 1/4 cup of Marsala or Sweet Vermouth
  • 1 sweet onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb spaghetti or tagliatelle noodles
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Parmesan, grated
  • Kosher Salt & Pepper

I always like everything in order before I begin cooking…and I mean everything.  So after I get all of my ingredients ready, I’ll then ‘prep’ the veggies, etc.  It makes for a much more efficient and clean kitchen.  I like things CLEAN! ✨

In a large Dutch oven, heat 1-2Tbsp of EVOO over med-high heat.  Once oil is hot, add in your carrots, onion and bacon.  Cook till soft and onions start to look translucent.

This should take about 8-10 minutes.  Now add in your meats (pork & ground beef).   Season liberally with salt & pepper.  Cook with the bacon/veggie mixture for another 8-10 minutes,

Once meat is basically cooked through (this recipe will cook all day, meat will be done by day’s end), drain a bit of the ‘grease’ out.  You still want to maintain some of it though.  There’s a LOT of flavor there friend!  A LOT..

Next, add in your smashed up garlic cloves.  Let simmer about 1 minute and then deglaze your pan with your Marsala or Sweet Vermouth.  Pour in your wine and chicken stock here after you scraped up any brown bits while deglazing.

Next up, those glorious (San Marzano) tomatoes.  You’ll want to take your rings off here and literally hand crush these suckers straight into your meat and veggie mix.  *Take note: wear an apron and/or do your best to point these tomatoes towards the back wall and straight into your pot.  Tomato juice is no joke!

Stir together, bring to a boil and then cover this baby up while reducing heat to a simmer.  She’s going to sit, cook, marinate and smell your casa up good!!  Let cook down for a solid 4-6 hours.  It will thicken up over this time.image

Once you’re ready for dinner, cook noodles to 1-2 minutes UNDER package directions.  Do not drain the noodles, but add straight from boiling water to sauce filled pot.  *reserve some pasta water if your sauce needs thinned.  You can also add a cup of milk.  Sounds weird,  but it works and is wonderful.  Trust me.*. The noodles will continue to cook in your warm, aromatic sauce.

Garnish your Bacon Bolognese with some freshly grated Parmesan cheese and a glass of vino!

Posole Rojo

Now this flavorful, spicy recipe takes some effort and hours of cooking, however, your reward is great!  You can also adjust the spice level by how much of the Chili de Árbol sauce you add to your broth.  Here in my home we like things HOT🔥.  So I add in a full cup and still garnish my serving with a drizzle.  If you want just a hint of heat and flavor, I recommend using 1/2-3/4 of a cup and zero ‘drizzle’.  To each their own, so adjust to your liking.

I imagine this could work great as a crockpot meal as well.  I suggest still searing your pork roast with the sweated onions and garlic on the stovetop first before adding to your crockpot.  Make sure to scrape up any and all brown bits to be put in also.  This method would work for days one has to be at work, the first for a lazy weekend day.

Hope y’all enjoy!  I know we did!

The Starting Lineup 

  • 3lb pork roast
  • 1 onion,  white chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 7 cups of low-sodium chicken broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup Chili de Árbol sauce, *recipe below (use less if you don’t want it too spicy)
  • 1 heaping Tbsp of Mexican chicken bouillon (Knorr Caldo Con Sabor de Pollo)
  • 2 heaping Tbsp Cumin, separated (1/dry rub-1/broth)
  • 1 Bay Leaf
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 Tbsp dried Mexican oregano
  • 2 Tbsp vegetable oil 
  • 1/2 cup milk/Tbsp cornstarch
  • 3 cans white hominy

GARNISH

  • sliced fresh jalapeños & radishes
  • Cilantro
  • Sour cream dollop
  • A drizzle of reserved chili purée 

Before starting this recipe, make sure you have a cup of my *Chili de Árbol | Railroad Wife sauce on hand.  This is a MUST for the robust, spicy flavor!

Set your pork roast out and coat with cumin and 1/2 salt and bring to temperature for even cooking.  Set aside.  *you can even coat roast in the dry rub overnight if you’d like, but still set meat out about 20 minutes before you sear it.

Heat vegetable oil to medium in a heavy dutch oven (I use my Lodge cast iron, but any should work).  Add your chopped onion to the oil and cook till soft (4-6 minutes).  Add in garlic and cook for 1 minute. 

Push mix to side of pot, turn up to med-high and add the spice coated pork roast and sear on each side for a nice ‘crust’ ( 8-10 minutes).  Occasionally stir your onion/garlic mix while your roast is searing so they don’t burn.

 

Next, add 1 cup water, all the chicken broth, chicken bouillon, 1 cup of chili purée (less if you don’t want it too spicy), cumin, Mexican oregano, bay leaf.  

Stir all the spices and the sauce https://railroadwifeintexas.wordpress.com/2015/04/17/chili-de-arbol-sauce/ together.  It will develop a great red hue. 

  

Bring to boil, stir and then turn to a simmer and cover.  Let simmer for 3 hours, stirring about once per hour. 

 

After the 3 hours is up, add the (drained) hominy to your pot.  Stir and let sit 1 more hour. 

After that last painful, stomach growling hour remove the roast from the broth and shred.  

Mix together the milk and cornstarch in bowl till smooth and add to broth.  If needed, repeat.  This helps to slightly thicken the broth.  Add the shredded pork roast back in now as well.  Let sit till the stew slightly thickens.

After all your hard work and (im)patience in waiting, your Posole Rojo is ready!!!  Ladle a large helping into a bowl, garnish and serve with chips or a warm, fresh tortilla on the side! 

  

Beer Braised Pork 

I must of had an idea the other night that I wanted to feel fuller than ever before while enjoying some flavors of the south.  Those ‘fat thoughts’ made me think of a real gooey cheesy mac n cheese.  I then thought if it could possibly get any better than that….and it could!  Why not top the already decadent dish with some braised pork and maybe a tangy & sweet bbq sauce?!!  Genius!

…and yes, I am full.  Had seconds. Thirds.  And I am now onto ‘skinny thoughts’.

The Starting Lineup

  • 1 3-5lb pork shoulder/butt roast (excess fat trimmed)
  • 1 12oz beer.  (Your pork, your choice)
  • Low sodium chicken broth/stock (at least 24oz)
  • 2-4tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1tbsp unsalted butter
  • Onion, quartered
  • Serrano Chili, cut long vertical slit through half (stem to tip) but leave intact
  • BBQ sauce of your liking.

Dry Rub

  • 2tbsp chili powder
  • 2tbsp ground coriander
  • 1tbsp brown sugar
  • 1tbsp paprika
  • 1tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 1tbsp cumin
  • 1tbsp kosher salt
  • 1/2tbsp black pepper

Take out your pork roast and trim off any excess fat if needed.  Set aside.  In a shallow dish combine all of the spices thoroughly together to make the dry rub.  Place pork roast in dish and evenly distribute the spices and gently press into the meat on all sides.  Cover the roast in dish with plastic wrap and let sit in fridge for at least an hour if not overnight.  Take the roast out of the refrigerator about 20 minutes before you’re ready to start cooking.

*Preheat oven to 300degrees* On med-high, heat an oven safe Dutch oven on your stove top (I love my enameled Lodge cast iron for this).  Add in the EVOO & butter.  Once the butter has melted place the roast in the pan and sear on all sides.  Typically takes about 8-10minutes.  Set roast aside on plate and pour in the chicken broth.  With a wooden spoon, scrape up any brown bits from the bottom of pot.  This is the GOOD stuff.  It will greatly enhance the flavor of your meal.  Like one of my favorite chefs, Carla Hall, always says, “there’s flavor in the brown!”.  Add the pork roast back into the broth filled pot along with the onion, Serrano and pour in that can of beer.  I personally like to keep a swig or two for myself ;). The liquids should come up to a little over half of the meat.  You do not want it completely covered.

Cover the pot with its lid and place into the 300degree oven.  After 30 minutes I drop the temp down to 250 and 30minutes later down to 225degrees.  Now you can walk away from the oven for a good 4 hours and let that pork roast get flavorful and ridiculously pull apart tender!

We like to serve ours over my easy, creamy Mac n Cheese with a drizzle of Franklin BBQ sauce!  You can purchase it here in Texas at your local HEB Grocery Store (my fave!!)

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