Quarantine Cooking: Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Kaiser Rolls

These sandwiches will be worth the wait

Mashed+potatoes+are+not+included%2C+but+they+are+recommended.

ZACH

Mashed potatoes are not included, but they are recommended.

ZACH GOFF, Evergreen columnist

In quarantine, like a lot of other people, I cooked a lot. It helps pass the time and gets your mind off the craziness of the world. This recipe was donated by my good friend Ariel, who has made it so many times they don’t have any measurements written down. That being said, if you want to add some ingredients or leave some out, that is your prerogative. It’s your food, make sure you enjoy it.

It was fun to learn a new recipe and eat some delicious food. It inspired me to try and experiment a little more in the kitchen and I hope it does the same for you.


Ariel’s Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Homemade Kaiser style rolls

Total prep: 40 minutes

Total cook time: 7 hours 40 minutes


Pulled Pork Sandwiches:

Prep: 20 minutes

Bake: 5 hours

Total: 5 hours 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 6 lbs. pork shoulder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons cumin
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 ½ tablespoons chili powder
  • ¾ cup brown sugar
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 ½ cups of your favorite barbecue sauce
  • ¾ cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  1. Start by trimming the excess fat and skin from the pork shoulder. If you don’t want to waste it, you can render this down to lard, which is useful especially in baking, but can also act as a substitute for butter in most cases.
  2. From there make a dry rub using the cumin, paprika, chili powder, brown sugar, salt, and pepper. Also include the garlic powder to taste; I ended up putting almost double the amount listed above. Place the now seasoned pork shoulder in the slow cooker.
  3. To make the broth it cooks in, add the barbecue sauce, apple cider vinegar, chicken broth and a bit of water into a separate bowl, mix until combined and pour over the pork shoulder — it should cover the majority of the meat. Cover and set to medium-high for five hours.
  4. At the halfway mark, flip the pork to help cook through evenly. The internal temperature should reach 145 degrees Fahrenheit before removing and shredding the meat. After shredding the meat using gloves or two forks, place the shredded pork back into the barbecue mixture until ready to serve.

Kaiser style rolls:

Prep: 20 minutes

Bake: 15 to 17 minutes

Total: 2 hours 20 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoons instant yeast or active dry yeast
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¼ teaspoon corn starch
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted softened butter
  • ¾ cup warm water
  1. I suggest starting this process after flipping the pork.
  2. In a glass measuring cup, warm water to 95-100 degrees Fahrenheit, add the yeast and stir. Any warmer and the yeast may die, any cooler and it may not bloom at all. Leave this for about 10 minutes. It should be frothy and bubbly. If not, the yeast hasn’t bloomed, and you should start this process over.
  3. Mix together the flour, two tablespoons butter and the yeast (including the water it was soaking in). It should become more elastic and dough-like. Once it is mixed together with no lumps of flour set in a lightly greased bowl and cover with a damp cloth for about an hour. It should double in size and be slightly springing to the touch. This is the first of two rests.
  4. Knock some of the air out of the dough and reform into a ball. Cut into six even(ish) pieces. *You can roll these into balls and set them on a lightly greased baking sheet, cover again with a damp towel and rest for another hour.
  5. After the second rise, they should have doubled in size again. Melt the last tablespoon of butter and spread over the tops of the rolls. Combine the salt and cornstarch and coat the tops (you don’t have to use all of the mixture). Place in an oven set to 425 degrees Fahrenheit for 15-17 minutes. The tops should be golden brown.
  6. Cut in halves and place the pulled pork on either side, add more barbecue sauce if desired. Enjoy!

*Optional:

Taking one piece at a time, work into a 1 ½ to 2-foot-long log. Go back to your days making play-doh worms and have fun with it. I found working from the middle rolling outward helps keep the log even throughout.

Coil the strand of dough around your hand, leaving a good amount of excess. Use this tail of dough and wrap it through the hole until it forms a knot. Cover with a damp towel and rest for an hour on a greased baking sheet.

Note:

If you don’t have a slow cooker, a pressure cooker works just as well and may even shave some of the cooking time off. If you don’t have either of those, putting it in a deep pan and basting it like you would a turkey is not as effective, but will still turn out delicious.