The Pulled Pork that almost caused a trip to A&E

On the 2nd Jan, we invited a houseful of the 'friends we should have done better at catching up with during 2012' around to start 2013 off in a more sociable vein. As you would expect, there was plenty of cake! There were also copious cups of tea, a vat of mulled wine, industrial quantities of coleslaw and pulled pork to go in warm ciabatta rolls. A pretty tasty feast even if I do say so myself!

Pork pre-pulling: part way through cooking and pre-foot-burning (more photogenic for the first photo!)
I've slow cooked a lot of things, but never made pulled pork before - and so I used this recipe for Christmas Pulled Pork from one of my favourite food blogs Hungry and Frozen. The recipes are quirky, the writing always honest, sometimes hilarious, and the photos delicious without being ridiculously over styled. It leaves you feeling that it might just be possible for you to make something delicious without disaster...

Although that might have been a false sense of security I was lulled into, since after 4hrs of roasting said pork, I took the casserole dish out of the oven and sloshed boiling pork fat all over my foot. Cue immediate sock and slipper removal, dashing up stairs to the shower, trying to roll my trouser legs up and realising I was wearing skinny jeans etc etc. Turns out out 'cold' shower water is more lukewarm, so within a couple of minutes Mr E had brought me a bucket of properly cold tap water and a chair. A few minutes later Mini-M made her way up the stairs and was clearly rather confused as to why Mummy was sitting trouserless in the bathroom on a dining room chair with her foot in a bucket!

But she wasn't too phased and soon was sitting with her own sore foot in a bucket watching the TV with me.

Mini-M with her 'sore foot' in a 'bucket of water' Not sure why she's got her other trouser leg rolled up...
Immediately after the burning, I did wonder if it was going to be a hospital job - it was over a moderately large area, the fat had been really hot, and the skin on the top of your foot is sensitive. But since it was Saturday night and I didn't particularly want a 4hr wait in A&E, I decided I'd put my first aider head on and deal with it myself. I kept my whole foot in very cold water for an hour, then took it out, dried it super gently and covered it in clean cling film (I know it sounds a bit like some odd fetish, but believe me, cling film does wonders for burns) and sat with an ice pack on top of it, elevated for the rest of the evening. And it didn't blister! It was sore. There was a series of large red splodges (still are in fact) where the skin was clearly burned, but not a blister in sight - phew!

Anyway back to the pork. The good news is I didn't drop it! So it survived unharmed, and Mr E bunged it in the fridge once it had cooled enough. The next day, I was able to pop it back in the oven with all the juices, then once it was heated through again, shred it.

In terms of the recipe, well I MAINLY followed the one in the Hungry and Frozen post.

The pork rubbed in spices before roasting
I'll just list the substitutions I made instead, with the recipe ingredient followed by my substitution

  • 1 tsp dried mustard - I used 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tbsp Cointreau - nothing I forgot - oops!
  • 2 tbsp tomato based chutney or tomato paste - 1 tbsp tomato puree and 1 very large tbsp fruity chutney

This was really delicious - fed a crowd with leftovers and we've now got several little bags of pulled pork in the freezer that I'm looking forward to cooking with into the New Year.

Very tender, very tasty post-pulling pork!