Tag Archives: slow cooker

Slow Cooker Rootbeer Pulled Pork.

For as much as I love my slow cooker, I don’t use it nearly enough.  It’s so easy, but there are so many bad crockpot recipes out there that I hate taking the chance and ending up with a dud.  But I took mine out of hiding the other day to make this super ridiculously easy meal and I’m so glad that I did.  It was so nice to not have to worry about cooking dinner after a busy day.  I just put the ingredients (there’s only two!) into the crock first thing in the morning and had a hot meal waiting for me 10 hours later.  Swoon.

When dinnertime came around, I defrosted some Brioche Burger Buns and added 2 shredded apples and a handful of golden raisins to a store bought cole slaw mix and served the sandwiches with some chips.  Easy peasy.  Dinner on the table in all of 10 minutes worth of effort?  I’ve gotta use this baby more often.

Slow Cooker Rootbeer Pulled Pork - as seen on Dinner with Kirsten

  • 1 2-4 lb. Pork Shoulder, Butt, or Loin
  • 1 16 oz. Bottle Root Beer

Place the pork shoulder in the crock of a slow cooker and cover with the root beer.  Cook on low for 8-10 hours.

Remove pork from the crock and drain the liquid.  Shred the pork with a fork (or your fingers, if cool enough).  Mix in about half a bottle of your favorite barbeque sauce for BBQ pork, or a jar of salsa to use in tacos.

Recipe Swap: Korean Short Rib Tacos with Quick Pickled Radish and Pear.

The theme of this week’s recipe swap was Asian food!  I was really excited as I’ve only attempted to make Asian food at home once or twice.

This meal is made easy because it is prepared in the slow cooker!  The slow cooker allows for the meat to cook in its sauce over a long period of time, resulting in tender, flavorful, fall-off-the-bone meat.  Don’t have a slow cooker?  Fear not, I’ve included instructions for how to cook them in the oven.

I decided to turn my short ribs into tacos since I was only able to procure a little bit over a pound and wanted to stretch the meal out to feed more than myself.  The Korean Short Rib Taco was apparently made popular by the Kogi BBQ Truck in Los Angeles, which has a crazy cult following.  I’ll definitely be hunting it down if I ever find myself in LA.

I really liked the way that the flavor of the meat was offset by the pickled radish and pear.  The radishes stayed crunchy and the sweetness of the pear was a perfect match.  I’ll definitely be making this again.

    Korean Short Rib Tacos with Quick Pickled Radish and Pear – adapted from Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks, as seen on Joelen’s Culinary Adventures.  

  • 4 lbs. Beef Short Ribs
  • 1/2 Cup Low Sodium Soy Sauce
  • 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar, packed
  • 2 Tbsp. Toasted Sesame Oil
  • 2 Tbsp. Rice Vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp. Fresh Ginger, minced
  • 6 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 tsp. Red Pepper Flakes
  • 2 Green Onions, sliced
  • Sesame Seeds, for garnish
  • Lime Wedges, for garnish
  • Tortillas, for serving

Whisk together the soy sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil, vinegar, ginger, garlic, and red pepper until the brown sugar has dissolved.

Place the ribs in the slow cooker and pour the sauce on top.  Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 8 hours.

*If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can marinate the ribs in the sauce for a few hours or overnight and bake on a foil lined baking sheet in a preheated oven at 350 for 1.5 hours.

Shred the short ribs and serve in tortillas.  Top with green onions, pickled radish and pear, sesame seeds and lime.

Radish and Pear Pickles - inspired by Steamy Kitchen

  • 4 Radishes, sliced very thin
  • 1 Asian Pear, sliced very thin
  • 4 Tbsp Rice Vinegar
  • 1 Tbsp. Sugar
  • 1 tsp. Red Pepper Flakes

Mix together all ingredients and cover.  Place in fridge for at least one hour, until ready to use.  One hour is ideal, as the radishes will start to lose their crunch the longer they sit in the liquid.

Jalapeño Bacon Jam.

I love bacon.  And really, who doesn’t?  A friend and I even have a longstanding joke where we exchange bacon related gifts with each other on birthdays and holidays.

Bacon Jam first crossed my radar when Kevin made a dish with it on season 6 of Top Chef.    It just sounded too damn good.  I had found a recipe a while ago and aquired all of the ingredients, but it required 6-8 hours of occasionally stirring on the stove.  And honestly?  I don’t have that kind of time so it kept getting pushed to the back burner.

Flash forward to the extreme look of joy on my face when I opened the December 2010 issue of Everyday Food.  My bacon jam dream was finally going to come true.

I served the bacon jam with some brie and mini toasts for a New Year’s Day Brunch, but it is equally as good slathered on a piece of toast and topped with a fried egg.  I’m excited to try it as a topping on a burger and to stir it into some pasta.  The bacon possibilities are endless.

Jalapeño Bacon Jam – slightly adapted from the December 2010 issue of Everyday Food Magazine

- 1 1/2 Lbs. Bacon, cut into 1 inch pieces

- 2 Medium Onions, diced

- 2 jalapeños, seeded and deveined

- 3 Garlic Cloves, smashed and peeled

- 1/2 Cup Cider Vinegar

- 1/2 Cup Brown Sugar, packed

- 3/4 Cup Pure Maple Syrup

- 3/4 Cup Brewed Coffee

Cook bacon over medium high, stirring occasionally until fat is rendered and bacon is lightly browned, about 30 minutes.  Transfer bacon to paper towels to drain.  Reserve 1 Tbsp. fat in skillet and add onions, jalapeños and garlic.  Cook until onions are soft and translucent, about 6 minutes.

Add vinegar, brown sugar, maple syrup and coffee.  Bring to a boil while stirring with a wooden spoon, careful to scrape up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan, about 2 minutes.  Add bacon and stir to combine.

Transfer mixture to a slow cooker and cook on high, uncovered, about 4 hours until syrupy.

Using a food processor (I used a Magic Bullet), pulse until coarsely chopped.  Let cool.

Refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 4 weeks.

**NOTES**

Make sure the fat is completely rendered before removing bacon from the pan.  I didn’t let it render enough, and it added 2 hours to my cooking time.

I found it strange to keep something uncovered in a slowcooker, but it helps to release the moisture in the food, turning the bacon mixture into a syrupy consistency.

The jalapeños were not very hot, but they added a great smokiness to the jam.  If you prefer your jam with more heat, leave some seeds in.