Thank you to the Ohio Pork Council for sponsoring this post. All opinions are my own.
I had such an amazing dinner last week. I was invited to a delicious feast hosted by the Ohio Pork Council and catered by the spectacular Kristen Bailey, owner of Sweets and Meats in Mt. Washington. I mean. It was ALLLL the pork.
We had pork belly burnt ends, pulled pork, dry-rubbed smoked ribs, perfectly cooked pork loin, smoked pork chops and a ton of made from scratch sides like her Grandma’s sweet potato casserole, the best mac-and-cheese ever, spicy collard greens, corn bread, and banana pudding! WHAT!? I know. It was the best.
And while we ate we chatted with two local Ohio pork farmers about their animals, their farm and cooking the perfect cut of meat.
It was an exceptional night of all things pork.
I learned so much. Talking with the farmers was a highlight of the night….I mean, other than all the mouthwatering food.
- You are buying local if you buy pork at your grocery store. Thanks for supporting Ohio Pork farmers!
- Pigs are now raised indoors and they also have very regulated diets and environments that create consistent and healthy pigs.
- The air is circulated in their barns every 30 seconds, which I found amazing.
- Pigs are fully grown in 6 months at around 270 pounds!
- There is more to a pig than bacon!! The loin is the most affordable cut of pork and the most delicious when cooked properly. Get the most bang for your buck and buy a loin. Need some ideas for pork loin..check out this recipe.
- Speaking of pork loin, it’s just as lean as chicken breast. Now you know.
- Pork loin, chops, and roast can be served at 145 degrees. A blush of pink is perfect!! Don’t be afraid of pink. These are healthy animals.
- Always let your pork rest for 5-10 minutes after you take it off the heat – you can take it off at 140 degrees and it will temp up to that 145.
Slow Cooker Pulled Pork Tacos
Now that you are all hungry for some pork….onto my recipe. This is our favorite way to have tacos. Set it and forget it. Taco night perfection.
What you need:
- 4-pound pork shoulder (also called Boston butt)
- 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar – a little goes a long way. It helps break down the meat.
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 tablespoons paprika (try smoked paprika for more of that smoked flavor)
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon pepper
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon of liquid smoke (optional, but adds a nice smokiness without having to own a smoker.)
- Fixings of your choice for the tacos. (tortillas, cheese, tomatoes, avocado, olives, sour cream)
What you do:
- Combine the seasonings into a rub. Season the pork with your rub on all sides. Really rub it in, that’s why it’s called a rub! 🙂 Alternatively….you could just buy a rub, but I bet you have all these things in the old spice cabinet.
- Pour vinegar and water into the bottom of the slow cooker.
- Place meat in the cooker.
- Cook on low 6-8 hours.
- The meat will be tender and fall apart easily. (If it doesn’t, it’s not done, cook a little longer.)
- Using two forks, shred the pork.
- Remove as much fat from the cooking liquid as you can and place back into it, in the crockpot.
- Let it heat back up and serve.
- Enjoy. Eat again as leftovers tomorrow. Make a sandwich! 🙂
Need some more pork recipes? I know you do. Check out this treasure trove of amazing recipes.
And in the meantime….please get your buns to Sweets and Meats. This family-owned business is located in the heart of Mt. Washington business district. Everything is local and homemade. You can meet the lovely Kristin, who is also the Ohio Small Business Person of the Year. She rocks. Everything we had at dinner is available at their restaurant in Mt. Washington. You won’t be sorry. Eat a pork belly burnt end for me.