10 May 2011

Slow-Cooked Pork in Beer

Apparently writing blog posts in one's mind doesn't automatically mean that you're being an active food blogger.

This recipe was inspired by a recent event in which beer - in glass bottles - was accidentally left in the freezer for about twenty-four hours. Although no disasters occurred, there was quite a lot of fizzing once they'd been safely retrieved, which meant we were left with 1500ml of very flat beer. For a while I lamented our lack of a slow-cooker, and then pulled myself together and did it anyway. The meal was super-easy, super-tasty, and based very (very) loosely on the little I could remember from SmittenKitchen's brisket recipe, after cooking it once, more than a year ago.

I used Hite, a Korean brand of lager; if you try something else, let me know how it turns out for you.

Slow-Cooked Pork in Beer
Serves 4

1 tablespoon oil
3 onions (3rd is optional)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
800g lump of pork
2 tablespoons ketchup
750ml beer (with extra to top up if necessary)
1 teaspoon chilli powder

Slice two of the three onions into thin crescents, and fry gently in the oil, preferably in a deep dish which can be transferred to the oven.

Sprinkle the onions with brown sugar and continue cooking over a low flame for about ten minutes. You could continue to caramelize them, but it only took about ten minutes before I got bored.

Season each side of the pork in preparation for searing. Turn the flame up to medium and put the pork in the dish, searing each side for two to three minutes. Add the ketchup and stir it into the onion mixture, being veeeery careful not to burn yourself.

Pour in 750ml beer - this amount didn't quite cover my pork but I wasn't bothered. Season with chilli, salt and pepper to taste. Stir the mixture and put in the oven at 120 degrees (250 Fahrenheit) for four hours, turning the meat over every hour.

After four hours, shred the meat into roughly bite-sized pieces. If using the third onion, slice that into thin crescents as well and add it to the pan now. Add a little more beer if necessary, and cook for another hour, preparing your side dishes in the meantime.


Action shot!

... with mashed potato and vegetables.