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Harley Hog Pulled Pork Sandwiches

July 14th, 2007

If you’re a libertarian who is tired of paying taxes for Congressional pork barrel spending, you can still go whole hog with this hearty recipe without having to worry about breaking the budget. I found this recipe a few months ago in one of those “master cookbook” collections, and it has turned out to be the best formula for pulled pork sandwiches that I have tasted so far.

The only disadvantage to this method is that it takes a significant amount of time to prepare because you need to set up the barbecue and assemble a rather long list of sauce ingredients. However, some of the tasks can be done simultaneously, especially if you have more than one person helping with the cooking. I usually begin putting together the sauce ingredients in a deep skillet while waiting for the pork to finish cooking outside. By the time the pork is done, the flavors in the sauce have had enough time to blend well and mature, significantly enhancing the overall taste.

For a special treat, I like to place the sauce and the pork (after it has already been barbecued and pulled apart into small strips) into a slow cooker and let the meat tenderize for another 4 to 6 hours. This requires some patience after doing all of the prior preparations, but the delicious taste of the final product is well worth it. Because of the time requirements, I have found that it is also a good idea to make a large enough quantity of food to last for two or more days if possible. The final mixture can be preserved in the refrigerator for several days after cooking, and the quantities of ingredients in the recipe can be adjusted proportionally as needed.

Historical Background:

The first Harley Davidson Cafe opened in New York City, located very close to the first Planet Hollywood. The second cafe held its grand opening in Las Vegas back in September 1997, which is where this recipe was originally invented. Both locations became famous for serving “road food” along with collections of the famous motorcycles and other Harley Davidson paraphernalia. We are fortunate to obtain this recipe from its original source; the Pork Producers Council got it from the cafe’s chef and later featured it in a restaurant trade magazine. Now this famous concoction can be shared with you.

Basic Sandwich Ingredients:

5 to 8 pound boneless pork butt (may use pork shoulder or other boneless roast)
12 large rolls (may be Hoagie or Kaiser varieties, or just use regular hamburger buns)

For the rub:

1 cup Kosher salt (regular granulated salt may be substituted)
1 cup ground black pepper
1 cup paprika
2 cups hickory wood chips
1 cup apple wood chips

Hog Sauce:

2 large onions, chopped
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 tablespoon paprika
1 tablespoons chili powder
1 tablespoon red pepper flakes
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
5 1/4 cups (42 ounces) canned tomatoes, with juice
2 cups cider vinegar
2 cups ketchup
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup dark brown sugar, packed
1/4 cup brown mustard
1 tablespoon salt
1 tablespoon coarse black pepper

Directions:

1. Combine all of the rub ingredients. Coat the pork butt evenly with mixture, shaking off any excess.

2. Soak wood chips in water for at least 15 minutes. Place pork butt in a smoker on rack at 220 degrees for 8 hours, with smoke going for 2 hours. Let it cool slightly. Break the meat apart with your hands.

3. In a heavy saucepan, sauté onions in the vegetable oil until translucent. Add the remaining ingredients and cook until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. Puree the sauce in a blender or food processor and let it cool. If desired, you can prepare the sauce in advance and refrigerate it for up to 3 days.

4. Combine the pork and the sauce in a large saucepan or skillet. Cook until it is heated through.

5. To serve, simply spoon the desired amount of pork onto the rolls. Fried potatoes, cole slaw, or baked beans may be served as standard side dishes.

For Charcoal Grilling:

You can also smoke your pork in a charcoal barbecue, which is what I have usually done because we do not yet have a full-blown smoker. Just arrange the charcoal around the edge of the inside of the grill. When the coals are hot, place the soaked wood chips on them, and then place the pork on the center of the rack above the coals. Cover. Cook the meat for 2-4 hours or until the internal temperature reaches 150 to 165 degrees.


One Response to “Harley Hog Pulled Pork Sandwiches”

  1. comment number 1 by: Frequent reader

    Excellent! Must tell people to be sure and adjust the cayenne pepper, black pepper, and red pepper to suit their own tastes.

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