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BBQ Honey Pulled Pork

 

Today we thank our Southern American cousins for introducing us to the wonders of pulled pork which is a US barbecue favourite. Traditionally cooked slowly over a wood fire for a delicious smoky taste, our version is roasted in the oven for convenience using smoked paprika and smoked garlic granules to add some of that authentic smoky taste. Of course we also added plenty of honey to add some amazing sweetness too! You can serve this pork however you like, but it's hard to beat just adding it to a bun with some coleslaw and sliced tomatoes.

It's important that the pork is cooked slowly and for a long time, so unfortunately there is no rushing this recipe and it will take around 5 hours in total. However most of that time is just letting the pork roast, so you can get on with other things whilst it’s in the oven.

To make our BBQ honey pulled pork you will need:

  • 5 kg pork shoulder joint
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 small onion quartered
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp smoked garlic granules
  • 1 tsp of onion powder

For the BBQ Sauce

  • 8 tbsp tomato ketchup
  • 1 ½ tbsp Worcester sauce
  • 4 tbsp Original Just Bee honey
  • 2 tbsp mustard
  • 1 ½ tbsp dark soy sauce
  • 1 tsp of smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp of cayenne pepper

  • A large roasting dish
  • baking foil
  • A small saucepan

Step One: Prepare the pork joint.

It's nice to have some fat in the pulled pork but I usually trim off the rind and about half of the layer of fat underneath and I find that's perfect. There's still enough fat left for the pork to stay nice and juicy without it being too fatty.

Next rub the joint with 2 tablespoons of olive oil and shake over a teaspoon of salt, pepper, smoked paprika, smoked garlic granules and onion powder. Give those spices a good rub into the meat.

Step Two: Get ready to roast!

Pop the oven on to Gas Mark 3 or 170c (160c for a fan assisted oven)

Then take the pork joint and put it in a large roasting dish, peel and quarter the onion and place it around the meat. Lastly add a couple of garlic cloves, there's no need to peel these, we'll squish out all the soft roasted garlic later! Cover the whole dish fully with baking foil and pop in the centre of the oven. Set a timer for two hours!

Step Three: Turning and basting.

After the pork has been roasting for two hours carefully take it out of the oven. Lift off the foil and turn the joint over. I find this really helps to get a nice even roast on the meat, you can also baste the joint with any juices in the tin. This also will help it keep nice and moist. Recover and return to the oven. Set a timer for one hour!

Step Four: Final roasting.

After the pork has been roasting for another hour, remove the joint from the oven. Remove the foil covering and lower the oven temperature to Gas Mark 2 or 150c (130c for a fan oven) before returning the uncovered dish to the oven. If the onions and garlic are soft and cooked now then you can remove them from the oven and put aside, otherwise leave them in the dish and return to the oven with the meat.

We need to leave the pork roasting at this low temperature until it pulls apart easily, this usually takes between 30 minutes to an hour, so while we wait, let’s get the sauce made!

Step Five: Making the sauce.

While the meat is finishing roasting, simply add all the sauce ingredients to a saucepan and heat gently over a low heat, stirring until combined. Let it simmer gently for a few minutes or until it starts to thicken slightly. Then turn off the heat and leave aside for now.

Step Six: Pulling the Pork.

After the pork has been in the oven for 30 minutes at the lower temperature, check to see if the pork will pull apart easily using a couple of forks. If not, return to the oven and check every 10 minutes until the pork is tender enough. Then remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly.

Drain off any juices in the bottom of the roasting dish into a jug or mug, don't discard this for now. Then pull the pork apart fully. You can leave some chunky bits if you like too! If the pork seems a little dryer than desired you can drizzle over a tablespoon of the juices from the pan and mix that into the pulled pork. Chop the soft cooked onion and add that along with the mushy roasted garlic and give that all a good mix through.

Next add a tablespoon of the juices to the saucepan and stir in to the sauce, this will give it a fantastic flavour. Heat the sauce again until it's nice and hot then pour the sauce over the pork and mix through until all the pork is covered. You can either serve right away, or cover and return to the oven on a low heat while you prepare the rest of your meal. Just be sure to keep it covered so it doesn't dry out.

 

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