BBQ Pulled Pork
3-5 lb pork shoulder
3 Tbsp vegetable oil
3 onions, quartered
3 cups chicken stock
1 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 small can pureed or diced tomatoes
Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper
1/2 tsp liquid smoke (optional)
*If you have a smoker, you can impart smoke flavor on your pork before the braising process.
Preheat your oven to 275°F. In a large Dutch oven, heat the oil over high heat. Season the pork shoulder well with salt and place in the hot oil. Brown the pork shoulder on all sides, allowing it time to get a nice golden-brown crust all over. Remove the pork from the pot and set it aside on a sheet tray. Pour off any excess oil from the pot, allowing just enough to coat the bottom. Place the pot back on the heat and add the onions. When they have nice golden-brown color on them add the chicken stock. Use a wooden spoon to scrape the bottom of the pot to remove any brown bits that are still stuck. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well. Place the pork shoulder back in the pot (it should be sticking 1/2-1/3 of the way out of the liquid). Cover and bring to a boil. Transfer the whole pot to the oven for 4-6 hours or until the meat is tender, juicy and falling off the bone.
To finish: *Braised foods are best the next day. When you remove the pot from the refrigerator, the fat will be congealed on the top. Scrape it off with a spoon and place the pot over low heat to warm everything up.
Remove the pork from the liquid and shred it using a fork or your fingers. Make sure not to discard the braised fat on the shoulder, this adds creaminess and good texture to your pulled pork. Strain the liquid through a mesh strainer and place in a sauce pan over medium heat. Reduce the liquid by half and then add the shredded pork back in. Season the mixture with salt and pepper to taste. While heating this mixture back up be mindful not to over-mix it or the meat can become gummy. Serve with slaw on fresh baked rolls.