You hear pulled pork and you instantly think, nice sunny day, bbq burning and perfuming the air with that nice smell of smoke, beers cold on ice and one in your hand. All the things that go with a day off, a summer bbq with friends and family. But wait, what do you do if it’s the middle of winter and you have a craving for this so called bbq. When this happens it seems as if the rest of the food bloggers out there all live in warmer climates and are bbqing as we speak. Impossibla! Pulled pork floods our world wide web and that sucks for anyone who is stuck in a colder location, like Toronto Canada. Is it possible we could get that great bbq feeling indoors, I mean if pulled pork is the key to opening that door then why don’t we give it a try. Oven baked pulled pork! I’ll give it try and see how we do.
Now I’ve done oven baked pulled pork and crock pot pulled pork many times. On this day though, I learned 2 key things when making this dish. Onion and apple jam! Crispy crackling! Never really experienced both before but on this day, yes I did.
As you can see, above and below is my onion and apple jam. Basically onions and apples are placed under my oven baked pulled pork and cooked to a caramelized home made delicacy. Really simple, but the fat that renders off the pork just gathers in the pan and creates magic. Flavour magic.
My second discovery which has existed all this time is, crispy crackling. Crispy pork skin, almost a cousin to the crispy chicken skin but not as popular. Just as good though, if not better. Key points to remember when doing this crackling is to score the skin, salt liberally and to make sure your oven is on the highest heat setting. Make sure your hood fans are on and when the pork goes in you lower the oven to your baking temperature. The high heat will blister the skin, the salt will draw out all moisture and time will create crispy skin.
My pork was a big one, so it took me 8-9 hours of cooking time. The key is to make sure the meats internal temperature reaches 190-195F° or to 90C°. As you can see below to I couldn’t wait for the pictures to be completed before I took a piece off. I think it gives the picture character, my wife begs to differ. Skin was crispy, jam was heavenly and pork was ready for some shredding. I did leave the jam as is, but you could purée or mash it with a fork.
Oven baked pulled pork in the winter is just the recipe you need to give you hope that summer will be here in no time.
Onion and Apple Jam
3 Onions sliced
3 Garlic cloves
2 Apples cored and peeled, sliced
Oven Baked Pulled Pork Rub
2 Tbsp paprika
1 Tbsp smoke salt
2 Tbsp granulated sugar
1 Tbsp ground dry mustard
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 Tbsp chilli powder
1 Tea cayenne pepper
1 Pork butt 4lbs-5lbs with skin on
Turn oven on 500F°/260C° bake.
Mix all ingredients for the rub. Rub all over pork butt.
Score the skin on the pork butt with a sharp knife. Salt the skin liberally and inside the cut grooves.
Place ingredients for the onion and apple jam on the bottom of a stainless steel pan or roasting pan. Place the pork butt on top with the skin side facing up.
Once the oven comes to temp, place pork in oven. Lower temperature to 325F°/162C°. Cook for 9 hours until meat is super tender and internal temp comes to 190-195F°/88C°-91C°.
Once pork is cooked remove from oven, let cool slightly. Remove crackling, and shred meat with 2 forks while removing any excess fat.
Pork is ready to be eaten. Make a sandwich and add the onion and apple jam as a topping. I like family style so I placed everything on a cutting board with some of my favourite condiments. Enjoy!
So I plated my dish family style, on a cutting board, Jamie Oliver would be proud. I made baked beans, had onion and apple jam, crispy crackling, oven baked pulled pork, home made pickled carrots onions and jalapeños, jack’s bbq sauce and some hot pepper mash.Plating can be configured anyway you like or with any ingredients you want. These key players I chose for this dance are all things I love when it comes to bbq and oven baked pulled pork.