I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve struggled to recreate or scale one of my own recipes. It’s generally my own fault; I truly suck at recording recipes I make up as I go along.
So it’s with great pleasure that I can tell you I was able to translate my crock-pot pulled pork creation from the somewhat undersized George Foreman appliance into a large oval crock-pot that Joanna once-upon-a-time used for melting butters for her handmade artisan soaps.
Not that I had a choice, of course; my last batch, made with an undersized half picnic, disappeared in a single day and my family was screeching for more like three baby birds yapping for mommy. Plus, I really needed to confirm it would work on a larger scale, using the sort of standard-issue crock pot you can scoop up at Target, Walmart or Home Depot.
So I hit Publix and had the butcher cut the hock off a full picnic (never woulda fit in the pot with that on there), and brought home the eight pound hunk of porcine joy.
I followed the same procedures as before, removing the skin (which my son Desmond inexplicably enjoyed playing with) and applying my dry rub to the entire thing. I browned it in a cast iron pan this time, then into the standard crock-pot it went, with a vinegar-based sauce made with about 2 1/2 cups of apple cider vinegar and (I think) 4 tablespoons of sugar. The rest of the ingredients listed on my vinegar bbq pork recipe were added in amounts that felt right to me.
16 hours on low, then 2 on high, and I was once again ready to pull the pork, as it had reached the eminently pull-able temperature of 195 degrees. The pork, even the sections above the liquid line, was tender and full of flavor, the uber-browned bits carmelized and delicious.
As for the sauce, there was more fat to skim off of it this time, which I expected having just increased pork-chunk weight by 60%. And, before pouring the skimmed sauce back in, I added a bit more vinegar for a little additional bite and ham-fisted a bottle Trappey’s hot sauce all up in that stuff. But in the end, I succeeded in recreating the glorious pulled pork of two days ago; it was very close to my last batch. Just better.
And this time I’ve got some in the fridge to munch on for the next few days. Or hours, whichever.