BBQ Sauce + Simple = Pulled Pork Sandwiches

BBQ season isn’t over quite yet! It’s easy to buy barbecue sauce, but when you don’t have a bottle on hand,  your pantry staple ingredients can make one in minutes – and it’s inexpensive! Vinegar, ketchup, brown sugar, chili and onion are the basis for sweet-tangy-hot  flavors of barbecue sauce. Get creative if you like by substituting salsa for all or part of the ketchup; vary the chili powder with chipotle, ancho or cayenne (careful with the heat!); add crushed pineapple for a chunky texture and fruit flavor; and many more creations like adding coffee or beer for a signature slather.  This basic Spicy Barbecue Sauce is perfect for a pulled pork sandwich, and it’s also good on chicken and beef.  Slow-cook the pork in the oven or barbecue, or try my speed-prep method for a dinner in less than 30 minutes.

And speaking of staples, how long can you keep pantry ingredients?  The website www.stilltasty.com is a super resource for how long and how best to store thousands of foods.

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PULLED PORK SANDWICHES WITH SPICY BARBECUE SAUCE
Makes 6 servings. (2-1/2 cups bbq sauce)
Prep and cook time: 2.25 hours
Prep and Speed Cook time: 25 minutes

1    cup seasoned rice vinegar (pepper flavor if available)
1    cup ketchup
1/2    cup packed brown sugar
4    teaspoons chili powder
1/2    teaspoon onion powder
3-4    pounds pork shoulder roast
6    sandwich rolls

Preheat oven to 400°F. Combine rice vinegar, ketchup, brown sugar, chili powder and onion powder in a small saucepan; simmer 5 minutes. Trim excess fat from pork; pierce several times with a fork and place in a resealable plastic bag or covered bowl with about 3/4 cup sauce. Reserve remaining sauce. Turn meat to coat evenly. Refrigerate at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours. Remove pork and discard marinade.
Bake (or grill over indirect medium heat) for 1-1/2 to 2 hours or until internal temperature reaches 175°F. Just before serving, bring reserved sauce to a boil; reduce heat and simmer 5 minutes. Carve pork crosswise into 1/4-inch slices, shred by hand or with a fork, as desired. Layer sandwich rolls with pork and drizzle with warm barbecue sauce.
SPEED PREP: Prepare sauce as directed above. Place 3 pounds thick, boneless, center-cut pork chops on pre-heated medium-high heat grill (or under broiler); cook 5 minutes. Turn and cook 5 minutes more or until meat is no longer pink in center, brushing with about 1/2 cup sauce the last 2 minutes of cooking time. Thinly slice; layer on sandwich rolls and drizzle with additional sauce.
Nutrients per serving: 681 calories; 49g protein; 56g carbohydrate; 29g fat; 165mg cholesterol; 1,260mg sodium.

Recipe developed by Rosemary Mark, Photo styling by Victoria Roberts-Russell  


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