Friday, January 15, 2010

Roast pork butt for pulled pork

Today at work I roasted an 8-pound pork butt for barbecued pulled pork sandwiches tomorrow. Since it's my day off, one of the residents will pull the meat from the refrigerator, add sauce and heat it for lunch.

Pork butt (also known as pork shoulder) is a fantastic cut for the institutional kitchen. It's economical and full of flavor.

I purchased a package of two pork butts at the Smart and Final warehouse grocery store this morning for $1.49 per pound. I placed the second roast in the freezer for a later meal.

The meat for tomorrow's meal cost about $12. That's a $5 savings when compared against ground beef or hamburger patties.

While $5 may not sound like a lot of money, it's significant to me because I'm feeding around 30 residents on about $5 per day. I'll apply the savings toward something special for the residents later in the month.

To roast the pork butts, I placed it in a two-inch hotel pan and three two-inch deep cuts on the top and bottom. I then seasoned the roast with a spicy rub made from chili powder, cumin, paprika, granulated garlic, dried oregano and kosher salt. A little brown sugar would've given the rub a hint of sweetness.

I placed the roast in a 325-degree oven, fat side up. A quart of water helped tenderize the meat and prevented the drippings from burning during the long cooking process. It took close to four hours to cook to the point where the meat pulls apart with little effort.

Unfortunately, I won't be able to taste the end product as I have the weekend off.

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