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Chorizo style pulled pork

By May 28, 2015 , , , , , , , ,

There's pulled pork and there's pulled pork! Every BBQ group that I'm a member of is obsessed with it and there are recipes, techniques and fervent discussions everywhere. I can certainly understand the popularity of it, who doesn't love a nice juicy piece of pork that falls apart after long slow cooking?




The vast majority of the recipes call for a traditional savoury rub followed by slow cooking on the BBQ and then served in a bun with a BBQ style sauce and coleslaw on the side. I've done the old school style myself and very nice it was too, but I decided I wanted to try something different. I love earthy flavours and what better match with pork than smoked paprika, I thought to myself why not try a chorizo style pulled pork?

Traditionally pulled pork is done on the BBQ, but I'm not going to forget that some people may want to do this in their ovens (it might be raining!), so for those of you not using a BBQ read oven every time I mention the BBQ (yes, I'm too lazy to keep writing the word oven).


There's more to the recipe than just smoked paprika. I wanted to infuse the meat as much as possible with those earthy flavours so decided on a wine brine before then using the smoked paprika and also some chipotle in adobo paste as a rub. I was pleased with the end result as it captured the essence of the smoky chorizo flavours and I accompanied it with a red chimichurri sauce whose piquancy and sweetness complimented it well.


Before I launch into the recipe I must give a big thank you to the guys at BBQuality meats http://www.bbquality.nl/ons-verhaal/ who provided the pork that I used in this recipe. I used their organic pork neck rather than the traditional shoulder as it has a bit more fat and therefore more flavour. 

For those of you who want to go traditional these feel free to order pork shoulder or you can use butt/procureur depending on where you're from. The tougher cuts of meat are often better for this as they hold up to long slow cooking.

Chorizo Style Pulled pork

1 kg pork neck (shoulder/butt if you like)


For the brine

500ml red wine
1l water
10g salt
1 whole garlic bulb (cloves removed and crushed to release the oils)
3 bay leaves
5 sprigs thyme
5 sprigs oregano
3 dried chipotle chillies (optional but adds flavour)
5 chillies de arbol (you can substitute any other dried chilli if you like)

For the rub

20g sweet smoked paprika
10g brown sugar
10g chipotles in adobo paste

Lets start with the pork

48 hours before you want to BBQ or slow cook, put all the brine ingredients in a plastic or glass bowl container and stir until the salt has dissolved
Add the pork and ensure that the liquid covers the meat
Cover with a lid or cling film and place in the fridge to marinade for 24 hours
After 24 hours, remove the pork and pat dry with a kitchen towel
Combine all the rub ingredients in a bowl and mix well
Next rub the rub mix all over the pork until it is well coated
I like to vacuum pack the pork once I've done the rub but you can place it in a bowl and cover it with cling film if you like
Place in the fridge for a further 24 hours

To cook

Pulled pork requires commitment on the side of the cook, if you think the marinading takes a while then the cooking is just as long depending on the size of your meat
Set your BBQ to 120 Celsuis, if cooking on the BBQ you will need to cook indirectly, for those of you with ceramic BBQs (such as Big Green Egg or Kamado etc...), you can use your plate setter
Those with Weber or kettle style BBQs should place the meat in the middle with the coals either side

For 1kg of pork I like to cook it for 6 - 8 hours at least or until it reaches an internal temperature of 89 celsuis

Place the pork uncovered on the bbq and cook for 4 hours on indirect heat
After 4 hours, I take the pork off the BBQ, I then place the pork in a roasting tin with some red wine or port (100ml) and cover it with foil and return it to the BBQ for 2 hours
You can also just wrap the pork in foil like a package and add a small bit of wine, rather than using a roasting tin
After 6 hours of cooking check the internal temp and if it has reached 89 celsuis, remove from the BBQ and allow to rest for at least 1 hour before serving

If you are doing a larger piece of meat then I would advise buying a meat thermometer and you will need to cook it for a longer period of time

You will most likely end up cooking the larger piece overnight, so ensure you have plenty of coals on the BBQ that are good quality and will keep the heat for long periods
For larger pieces of meat you need to go on internal temperatures to gauge when it's done, for 2kg you're looking at approx 10 - 14 hours and for up to 4kg 22 - 28 hours cooking time

I like to serve this in tortillas rather than a soft bun with guacamole and and the chimichurri sauce


For the chimichurri sauce

10g fresh thyme
10g oregano
10g chives
10g Parsley
10g red onion
1 clove garlic or 10g wild garlic leaves
2 red peppers slow roasted (for about 45mins and charred (you can do this under the grill, on the bbq or with a chefs blow torch, once charred place it in a plastic ziplock bag to cool, it makes it easier to remove the skin)
30ml red wine vinegar
20ml Olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Finely chop all the garlic, herbs and red pepper

Place in a bowl and add the oil and vinegar and mix well
Season to taste
Cover and put to one side to serve with the pork later

Guacamole 

1 avocado
Few dashes tobasco
Half clove of garlic crushed
Juice half lemon
Salt and pepper to season

Peel and de-seed 1 avocado, remove the flesh and in a bowl mash with a fork

Add the crushed garlic, the juice of half a lemon, a few dashes of tobasco and salt and pepper and mix well

For those of you who want to get the Chipotles in adobo paste and the dried chillies, I buy mine online from the Cool Chile Company in London who have some excellent Mexican food products.


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4 comments

  1. This sounds lovely and really tasty. Thank you for sharing this.

    Simon

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  2. It was awesome! i did have some variation to it: I did the brine by the recepee, but i did not use the extra time for the dry rub. i just rubbed it and left it for an hour than into the oven. And i use a 4.5 kg pork shoulder with skin on. I first cooked it for 1.5 h at 180 and than i turned to 130. I think all in all it was done in 12 hours, but i needed to reheat, so in the end it was for another 2 hours in the oven. I added the chimichurri as well - delish! thanks for the great inspiration and the private tips ;-)

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  3. Brined the shoulder for 24 hrs and then covered in the rub/paste and stuffed into a ziplock bag in the fridge for another 24 hrs then I forgot we had dinner reservations on Easter Sunday so it had an extra 24hrs in the paste.

    4hrs at 125ish then added a slosh of wine and covered in foil. Checked the temp 90 mins later and it was 92 so took it out to rest.

    First half served with mash and 'pan gravy'. 2nd half last night with tortillas and fresh made salsa.

    Super moist so the timing was spot on.

    Only deviations were that we used a dried scorpion chilli in the brine instead of the ones in the recipe and didn't need a whole litre of wine as our cut of shoulder wasn't massive. Will definitely be making it again.

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