Modified Breakup Pork

Breakup Guy is still in no-girl mode and hes on a roll with the slow cooker, this time a dish very clearly showing his Southern roots, Pulled Pork. In between a new self-awareness which included a monlogue-ish questioning of whether or not a relationship was good for him right now, I got the complicated instructions from him on a walk about downtown: 2 pounds pork tenderloin, one bottle of root beer, one bottle of Liquid Smoke, 1 T salt then into the slow cooker on low for 8 hours.

Breakup Guy is entering into what I often see in the 20’s – identity refinement;  separating out the parental upbringing from what he wants to be, taking the bits he wants, leaving the rest behind. Parents have been married for 30 years, all the brothers are married, he was brought up Southern Baptist in Southern Alabama. There is heavy expectation  to “fall in line”, however its a contradiction for him and hes creating his own path to reconcile the discrepancy.

I did the same, I hope it works as well for him.

I attempted Breakup Pork at home last night, assembling the pot at 11p, expecting my pulled pork to be done at 7a. Apparently, my slow cooker and I are going to have a sitdown about working together as a team. This means the slow cooker cannot go off on its own agenda, which, last night,  included turning itself off waay before the end of the 8 hour cook cycle. Pork poisoning was not on my to-do list this weekend, so that lot was chucked into the bin.

Round 2, with the slow cooker brooding in a time-out, I went with an oven method using a quicker-than-normal marinade.

IMG_1165

One adjustment I made was swapping out the Liquid Smoke, it tastes metalish to me so I use a strong brew of Lapsang Souchong Tea. If you don’t know Lapsang, its just a smoked black tea, a strong one. I brew about 8 tea bags to one cup of hot water – poof, Liquid Smoke.

Put the pork tenderloin in a Ziploc with the root beer, tea and salt. Into fridge for 4 hours, drain, then oven-roast at 400 for one hour, flipping once midway.

My oven is gas and I speculate that it cooks a little higher than normal, so the pork had a really good flavor but it was Death Valley dry. I’ll probably need an actual meat thermometer before the next attempt.IMG_1169

I turned them into pork tacos, in memory of my visit to Carnitas Snack Shack in San Diego. A little homemade BBQ sauce, Fontina cheese, some avocado and some itsy-bitsy Turkish peppers. A pretty good overall taste experience!

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