The inspiration behind this post is pretty comical. About a week or so back, I was hanging out at home with one of my roommates, John. We were starving, so I offered to make a quick dinner for the both of us. It had been a beautiful day and I was in the mood for summer food – chicken thighs and coleslaw. So, I’m whipping up the slaw, thinking I’m going to make this fancy lime and avocado dressing, maybe throw in some cilantro. In my head, this dressing was going to be amazing, because how can you go wrong with these ingredients? YOU CAN’T.
Oh wait. Yes you can.
First taste out of the blender, I knew I had too much lime. I tried to save it, I really did. I added a bit of this, and a bit of that and thought, ‘hey this might work. Let’s throw it in with the slaw!’ What was I thinking? I warned John as I gave him his plate, telling him something wasn’t quite right with the dressing and he needed to tell me what was wrong. I watched him take a bite, and then a second, and politely say, ‘No Steph, it’s really good. Maybe just a tad bit less lime next time?’ John, you’re such a good sport! It was terrible. I know.
This story really makes me laugh. Sometimes recipes work, and sometimes they fail miserably. And sometimes you put on an old Aaliyah song when no one is home and belt out some feel-better lyrics for inspiration.
‘If at first you don’t succeed (first you don’t succeed),
Dust yourself off, and try again
You can dust it off and try again, try again’
Not that I would know anything about that last part.
For Operation Slaw: Round 2, I decided to take a different approach to the flavors and wound up at the grocery store hunting for ingredients. As I passed the butchers, I spied a sale on pork butt and thought, ‘DUH, pulled pork and coleslaw!’ A match made in heaven. And that’s why John inspired this entire post. Get it?
Simple Crock-Pot Pulled Pork
- 1 yellow onion
- 4 cloves of garlic
- (1) 2 ½-3 pound pork butt (free range if possible)
- 1 tbsp. chili powder
- 1 tbsp. coconut sugar
- 1 tsp. cumin
- 1 tsp. sea salt
- ½ tsp. cinnamon
- 1 cup chicken broth (Make your own if you’re feeling especially cave-like. It’s better for you.)
Dice the onion and garlic and set in the bottom of the crock-pot. Cut the netting off the pork butt and place it on a plate or pan. Some people prefer to trim the fat off the pork at this point, but I like to keep it on for flavor and remove it later.
In a small bowl, combine the chili powder, coconut sugar, cumin, sea salt, and cinnamon. This is your rub – you know what to do with it. Slather that good stuff all over the pork butt – get personal with it! Once the meat has been seasoned, place it over the onions and garlic and slowly add the chicken broth. I have a tiny crock-pot, and it was full to the brim. One day, I will invest in a newer, big girl crock-pot…one day.
This can be cooked on high for 6 hours, or low for 8-10 hours. Once the meat is done, you can remove and shred it using two forks. Add the pulled pork back into the crock-pot and let the meat cook in the juices on low for another hour. It’s really as simple as that!
Are you thinking I forgot an important part of the recipe? Like…the BBQ sauce? I have yet to find a Paleo approved BBQ sauce – one that isn’t loaded with chemicals and sugar. And I believe that a good pulled pork is served with the sauce on the side, so you can choose how much you want! So find your favorite Paleo approved BBQ sauce, or homemade, and add as desired. Although, this stuff is amazing plain. That’s how I roll.
(Makes approximately 10 cups)
- ½ head organic green cabbage
- ½ head organic red cabbage
- 2-3 large carrots
- ¼ cup olive oil
- 1 Roma tomato
- 1 clove garlic
- ¼ tsp. sea salt
- 3-4 clicks of fresh ground black pepper
- juice from ½ lemon
Carefully cut both the cabbages and carrots in very thin strips, using a knife or julienne tool. You will need a large bowl to hold the undressed slaw while you prepare the dressing.
I made the dressing by adding the rest of the ingredients – olive oil, tomato, garlic, sea salt, pepper and lemon juice – to a small blender and blending until smooth. Pour the dressing the slaw and gently toss until the vegetables are completely covered. Serve cold, with a healthy serving of pulled pork!
So…who’s bringing me the iced tea?