Chilli lime pulled pork quinoa bowl

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Whenever I make a batch of pulled pork (and thanks to my slow cooker it happens quite often), I always make sure to portion some out to freeze. It was a tip I picked up from Jamie Oliver, I think, who confirmed that it could be frozen then defrosted down the track to make for a speedy dinner.

And recently, I did just that.

I found a portion of pulled pork in the freezer which I reheated slowly in a frypan, adding a good dash of chilli sauce and a squeeze of fresh lime at the last moment to really make the flavours sing!

Then, what to serve it with?

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On this occasion I went with cooked quinoa, lettuce, cucumber, and a little tomato / onion / coriander salad. Not to mention the rest of a roasted corn and chorizo salad that we had leftover from the night before, along with a dollop of natural yoghurt and harissa hummus.

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At the last minute I came across some tortillas in the freezer too, which came back to life in no time at all with a short burst in the microwave.

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And so this chilli lime pulled pork quinoa bowl came to life. A combination of fresh, frozen and leftover ingredients – packed to the brim with flavour.

Another dinner bowl that I will no doubt attempt to recreate at some point in the future!

Chipotle pulled pork and pineapple tacos

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While I’ve not yet travelled to Mexico (and any long-distance overseas travel is probably not on the cards anytime soon) I really do enjoy Mexican food. Perhaps it is because it is relatively simple to create, with a focus on lots of fresh and interesting flavours? Or perhaps it is the spice-factor, that keeps my palate happy?

And these chipotle pulled pork tacos did not disappoint – in  both flavour and spice factor.

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Created with the help of my trusty slow cooker  and time. Lots of time.

With 8 hours taking a large piece of pork shoulder from this…

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To this!

IMG_5565We loaded up the soft tortillas with the pork (of course) and a variety of other toppings – including red cabbage, a spicy green coriander sauce, lime mayonnaise, and grilled pineapple. IMG_5568 And our craving for Mexican food was thereby sated!
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Chipotle pulled pork and pineapple tacos

  • 5 chipotle chillies in adobo
  • Juice of 1 orange
  • 150g pineapple, chopped
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 2 tsp minced garlic
  • 2 tsp ground cumin + 1 tsp
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbs white vinegar
  • 1.5kg boneless pork shoulder
  • a bunch coriander
  • 1 green chilli
  • 3 spring onions
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • zest and juice of 1 lime
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • To serve: soft corn tortillas, mayonnaise (mixed with a splash of lime juice and sprinkled with lime zest), shredded red cabbage, grilled pineapple slices and lime wedges.
  1. Place pork into the bowl of a slow cooker.
  2. Process the chillies, orange juice, pineapple, tomato, garlic, 2 tsp cumin, oregano, salt and vinegar until combined. Pour over the pork, turning to coat.
  3. Cover and look on low for 8 hours. Remove pork and shred, then return pork to the sauce to keep warm.
  4. Meanwhile, make a spicy green sauce by processing the coriander, chilli, spring onions, ground coriander, juice/zest and oil – until well combined. Season to taste.
  5. Serve the pulled pork in tortillas, and top with cabbage, mayonnaise, spicy green sauce and grilled pineapple – and finish with a squeeze of lime juice.

What about you? Do you have a favourite Mexican dish?

Smoky BBQ pulled pork

IMG_4382 Friends, one thing I’m a little short on at the moment is time. The early mornings are becoming earlier mornings, and even that’s not making my in-tray smaller. If anything its getting bigger! But there was something on our dinner table recently that benefited from time. Lots of time. IMG_4370 9  hours be to be precise. Smoky BBQ pulled pork. IMG_4368 Pork shoulder, honey, BBQ rub, BBQ sauce and bourbon. Into a slow cooker – and cooked for 9 hours. IMG_4372 Yes 9. And, if I ever needed reminding just how wonderful slow cooking can be – I could barely get the pork out of the cooker in order to shred it when those 9 hours were up. It literally felt apart between my tongs. IMG_4377 Yes. It was as good as it looks! IMG_4378 Melt-in-your-mouth pulled pork – with a rich smoky BBQ sauce. Served on some toasted bread rolls – with a good amount of coleslaw and salad on the side. IMG_4381 Yes sometimes it pays to find the time! IMG_4383 I followed this recipe –  You’ve gotta give it a try!

Pulled pork lasagne

Ok. Its official. My tastebuds have moved from salads to slow cooking and I don’t see this changing, at least in any significant way, until Winter passes. Particularly not when dishes like this are on offer… Pulled pork lasagne. I’m pretty sure I found the recipe in the latest Donna Hay magazine… IMG_3837 One chilly afternoon, I got to work putting the dish together – starting with the sauce. And while it was far from a speedy dish (it probably took close to 4 hours all together), there was very little ‘hands on’ required. To make the sauce, the pork was browned then combined with a bunch of other ingredients – onions, garlic, paprika, malt vinegar, thyme, brown sugar, tomatoes and stock. IMG_3838IMG_3839 Into the oven for 3 hours at a slow temperature, turning the pork from this… IMG_3840 Into this! IMG_3843 And I knew this was going to be good when I couldn’t even get the pieces of pork out of the pan without it breaking between my tongs. Yes, it was one tender pot of pork – that shredded with ease. IMG_3845 Back into the pot with the other goodies, and we had ourselves one of the best lasagne sauces I’ve created! IMG_3846 And, while I had initially planned to add some kale or other green, I ended up keeping it simple. Lasagne sheets, meat sauce, grated provolone and mozzarella, topped with a homemade béchamel sauce. IMG_3848IMG_3849IMG_3850IMG_3851 Into the oven for a further 40 minutes, until brown and bubbly on top. IMG_3852 Served simply with a side salad, and well I was sold on this pulled meat lasagne variety. The pork was rich, and the cheeses made for a rather indulgent finished product. IMG_3856 Definitely one to be added to the ‘list’! Next time, I may return to a beef base – but will be trying out the slow cooked / pulled method again for sure. What about you? Are you a fan of lasagne?

One pot meal – Smoky pulled pork

IMG_0327Over the weekend, I sent out a “help me” to my fellow Canberra foodies. For I had pulled pork on the menu – that called for a tin of chipotle chillies, but no idea where to find them. My fellow foodies were ever helpful, and it wasn’t long before I had a tin of these beautiful peppers in my hot little hand. IMG_0309 (FYI – I found them at The Essential Ingredient in Kingston, and am also reliably informed that the Asian Grocer at the Fyshwick Markets stocks them also). My inspiration came in the form of a recent Donna Hay magazine, and with a few adjustments, we soon were on our way to pulled pork heaven. IMG_0310 What I loved about this dish, was that it was really a ‘one pot’ meal. No browning of the meat, no separate cooking of the ingredients required.  Literally it was one of those “throw it all in and walk away” meals – that still impresses on flavour. IMG_0311IMG_0312 Covered, cooked on low, and we were greeted by beautifully tender pork a couple hours later…. IMG_0314IMG_0320IMG_0322 A word of warning – this dish yielded a lot of pulled pork. So much so – that it would easily feed 10 or so if you were to serve it with some side dishes. IMG_0324 As for us – well we put it to a couple uses. First – and perhaps most delicious in its simplicity – the pork was served in toasted Turkish rolls with coleslaw. IMG_0326 The second night – when the heat had intensified even more (yes those chipotle chillies sure do pack a spicy smoky punch), I made some cheese and pickle scones – and also served the pork with a side salad. IMG_0331 The third night…..well you get the picture! Let’s just say this is definitely a dish we will make again – but probably when we have occasion to feed many mouths! Smoky pulled pork (serves 8-10) (adapted from Donna Hay)

  • 2kg boneless pork shoulder, skin removed and cut into 8cm pieces
  • 1 orange – rind grated + juiced
  • 2 cups orange juice – extra
  • 1 head of garlic, cloves peeled
  • 1 tbs sweet paprika
  • 200g can of chipotle chillies in adobo sauce
  • 400g can tinned tomatoes
  • 2 extra tomatoes, diced
  1. Place the pork in a large saucepan. Add the remaining ingredients.
  2. Bring to the boil, then cover tightly, and simmer on low for 2 hours.
  3. Remove the lid, and continue cooking for a further 30-45minutes – stirring as required.
  4. Remove the pork pieces, and shred using two forks.
  5. Return the pork to the pan, stir well to combine, and reheat gently.

What about you? Are you a fan of pulled pork?

A BBB Mexican Fiesta

IMG_1329 With fond memories of the wonderful Mexican food we indulged in while travelling through the USA last month…. IMG_1336 I wasted no time on our return to Australia in attempting to recreate the wonderfulness at home. Corn tortillas, marinated meat, fresh ingredients…. IMG_2266 A little Mexican fiesta if you please…. BBB style. I figured that our regular Sunday night family dinner would be the perfect opportunity to spread my love of tacos and guacamole. But, rather than rely on the boxed old ‘el paso concoctions, I wanted to go gourmet. Just a little gourmet. So in place of the regular minced beef / seasoning taco filling, I had a lamb shoulder simmering in tomato, spices and citrus all afternoon, until the meat literally fell off the bone, and was able to be shredded with ease. IMG_2246 Back into the sauce (that I had reduced until it was more of a syrup than sauce), and we had ourselves the first taco filling… IMG_2252 Pulled pork…BBB style! And in case pork wasn’t your thing, chicken thighs poached with onion, then shredded and stirred through a coriander onion pesto, resulted in our second taco filling…. IMG_2237 Coriander chicken (recipe to follow!) IMG_2241 But no Mexican fiesta would be complete, of course,  without a big range of tasty and fresh fillings. And, when they are all laid out in a ‘build-your-own-taco’ production line, well it is easy to keep all hungry mouths (and all fussy tummies) happy. IMG_2260 The selection? Cinnamon sweet potato puree, guacamole and chopped pineapple…. IMG_2262 Tomato, red onion and lettuce…. IMG_2253 Sour cream and grated cheese…. IMG_2255 With a little coriander and leftover cheddar olive cornbread, to make the meal complete. IMG_2257 But what about the edible bowls and plates? We settled on two choices of tacos – hard corn shells…. IMG_2269 As well as soft corn tortillas. IMG_2271 While the meats for this fiesta may have taken a while to put together, the meal itself could not have been simpler. Just chop and display – and let the family go taco wild! A little dinner fun for all concerned 🙂 IMG_2258 I stuffed two taco shells with the rich pulled pork, together with as many of the fresh fillings I could fit in…. IMG_2264IMG_2265 And a soft corn tortilla, loaded with the coriander pesto chicken and fresh salad. IMG_2263 It was actually hard to pick a favourite between the two taco varieties, but I did really enjoy the pulled pork. Sweet, rich, and delectably tender. Made all the more delicious by my other taco must have ingredients – guacamole, cheese and fresh coriander. IMG_2267 Our little Mexican Fiesta turned out to be a perfect send off for the weekend. And, having a tonne of ingredients leftover has certainly made my lunch choices easy over the next few days! Oh yeah…..and did I mention dessert???? IMG_2199 Stay tuned! What about you? What is your favourite taco ingredient?