Hawaiian Pulled Pork
Pulled pork is a traditional Hawaiian staple. I remember the first time I had real pulled pork; the tender pork melted in my mouth, it was addicting! Ever since then, when my mother in law made it, this has been a meal we have at least once a month in our home. The nice part about it is that it is easy! It's a Crock-Pot meal, so its a leave it and forget it keeper. I have made this with as small of a roast as a one pounder, but the more you cook, the more meals you'll get out of it. I usually have leftovers that consist of pulled pork quesadillas, nachos, we've even made pulled pork pizza (yum!), and my favorite was a recent experimentation with pulled pork wing sauce flautas; yes, the recipe will be coming soon!
I do mention in the recipe not to use pork loin. I know pork loin is leaner, but because of the lack of any real fat, which adds so much flavor, the pork loin doesn't get tender enough to truly pull apart, or shred with the right consistency. I have found that the meat is best when purchased at Costco. Not only is the quality great, the price is unbeatable. I usually spend around $30 and get 15 pounds of pork, which gives me anywhere from 4-6 roasts, and with that, around 12 dinners!
The pineapple juice is the best liquid to use in order to give it that sweetness to offset the salty pork. You really don't need a lot of liquid because the roast will release its own liquids as it cooks and tenderizes.
I recommend using Calrose rice; this is the rice that sushi places use. I tend to use a rice cooker, in order to get the real sticky consistency, but a pan on the stovetop will work just fine! Jasmine rice is also a good rice to use. I've tried it with brown rice, which I enjoy the flavors of, but the Hawaiian flavors really work best with the real, all starches included variety of rice.
Enjoy your meals with this recipe, and with every bite I hope you feel like saying, "Aloha!"
Cook Time: 10 hours
- 4 pound pork butt, or pork shoulder roast (don't use pork loin, it will not be tender enough; trust me)
- 1 6 ounce can pineapple juice
- Coarse sea salt (enough to cover top of roast lightly)
- 2 tsp Liquid smoke (I use mesquite variety, but any kind will work)
- Calrose rice to serve on bottom (make the amount you want, and some for leftovers too.
- Teriayki sauce to drizzle on top
- Place roast in 5-6 quart slow cooker, fat side down
- Add pineapple juice
- Pour liquid smoke on top of roast
- Sprinkle salt to lightly cover the top of the roast (with sea salt you really have to try hard to over salt)
- Cook on LOW for 6-10 hours (the longer the better)
- Remove roast from slow cooker (it will most likely come out in pieces; this is a good sign)
- Take tongs and hold roast, using a fork to pull, or shred the pork with the other hand
- Remove all fat remnants and excess juices from slow cooker, accept for about one cup of liquid
- Return pork to slow cooker and keep warm until ready to serve
- Cook rice as desired
- Serve pork over rice, or alongside and drizzle with warm, Teriyaki sauce (if desired)
- A great side dish is macaroni salad!