I’m considering giving up sweets.
I know. I know.
Those of you who know me, know me well.
I cannot possibly give up sweets.
I might give up candy though. . . . my Sixth Earthly Love after my husband and children.
But I have no other explanation for this gorgeous muffin top that spills over my jeans every morning. . . except for my lack of exercise and a complete and utter neglect to consume vegetables.
But who’s making sense here?
And which do I hate more? The loss of candy, or the muffin top?
It’s a tough debate.
I’m actually not sure.
No. I’m sure.
I hate the muffin top more.
Sniff, sniff. . . tear. . . .
Naturally, though, if I’m eliminating candy, I will start rummaging for foods that are just sweet enough to assuage my ridiculous cravings.
Adding sweet to supper?
I’ll tell you why not. There is no reason at all why not.
It’s actually an excellent idea.
Especially when you can combine sweet food with lazy food. . . .
Pulled pork from the slow-cooker?
In a sweet and spicy Hoisin sauce?
From the slow-cooker?
Are you getting my point here?
OK, so it’s not only sweet, spicy, and lazy (a.k.a. AWESOME!), but it’s also a little bit tart, and when you combine it with fresh cucumbers and thinly sliced red onions who are dressed up with sprinkles of vinegar and red pepper flakes, well – then you have sweet, spicy, lazy, tart, fresh, and crunchy. . . perhaps bordering on – dare I say it – healthy!
(Do you like my breath coaching? I can be hired. . . . )
On night one, we wrapped it all up in the soft taco shell together – cucumbers and meat, snuggled happily in their cozy flour sleeping bag – drizzled with a rich and spicy-hot hoisin “barbecue” sauce.
It’s a happy marriage.
On day two, (because there will likely be left-overs, (yay!) – It’s a lot of meat), we just broiled the pulled pork with some of the broth to re-heat it and served it as the entree – you can pick your sides. (Admittedly, ours were a little weird given the Asian aspect of the pork – we had mashed potatoes and green salad. . . .)
Hey – maybe now that I’m not eating candy, I’ll eat more veggies.
I’ll stick to the pork.
Asian Pulled Pork Tacos (Slow-Cooker) with Sweet and Spicy “Barbecue” Sauce
- 4 pounds Boston Butt pork roast (mine had a bone, but you could go boneless too), cut into 4 equal pieces
- 1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce
- 1/2 cup hoisin sauce
- 1/4 cup rice vinegar
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup orange juice
- 3 tablespoons ketchup
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 1/2 tablespoons fresh ginger, peeled and grated
- 2 tablespoons sesame oil
- 1 teaspoon Sriracha hot sauce (optional)
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
- Sliced green onions (for garnish)
- Sesame seeds (for garnish)
For the Sweet and Spicy "Barbecue" Sauce: (makes about 3/4 cup)
- 6 tablespoons hoisin sauce
- 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
- 3 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
- 3 teaspoons sriracha
For the Cucumber "Salad":
- 1 cucumber, peeled and thinly sliced
- 1/4 large red onion, thinly sliced
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (or to taste)
- A few shakes of rice vinegar (to taste)
- 10 (or more) Corn or Flour Tortillas (if you'll be serving taco-style)
For the Pork:
Place cut pork in slow cooker.
Mix together all other ingredients (except the green onions and sesame seeds), and pour over pork.
Cover, and cook on low for about 6.5 - 8 hours.
When the pork is finished cooking, remove it from the slow cooker, separate and discard fatty parts and bone.
Shred the pork with two forks.
You can serve it at this point, or you can skim the top of the "broth" in the slow-cooker to remove some of the fat, then place the shredded pork back in the pot with the remaining broth.
If you would like to crisp and caramelize some edges of the meat before serving, place it on a foil-lined cookie sheet, drizzle some broth over the top, and broil it until the edges are deep brown and slightly crisped.
Serve over tortillas with hoisin barbecue sauce, sliced green onions, and sesame seeds. Add Cucumber "Salad" if desired.
For the Hoisin "Barbecue" Sauce:
In a small bowl, whisk together all ingredients. Refrigerate any leftovers.
For the Cucumber "Salad":
Combine cucumbers and onions in a bowl. Sprinkle with red pepper flakes and vinegar and toss.
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