After taking the summer off from entertaining, I've managed to schedule three events in eight days, one of which involves transporting the food to someplace else for consumption. When it rains, it pours.
Not being a complete moron, I've forgone my usual practice of trying out new recipes on unsuspecting guests. The first two events feature tried-and-true dishes: jambalaya and a chicken-cheddar-rice casserole.
The third event, however, does indeed feature a new to me recipe. Two, actually, if you consider the two different sauces as discrete recipes. The dish? Pulled pork for sandwiches, with both an Eastern North Carolina sauce and a Western South Carolina concoction.
Peapod, bless their little hearts, has had pork shoulder, also known as pork butt, on sale for the past month or so. It falls well within my "huge, but cheap cuts of meat to feed a crowd" entertaining scheme and budget. It also gives me a chance to try my hand at barbecue, southern style.
Most of the recipes I've seen call for rubbing the meat with a variety of things, then letting it dry marinade in the refrigerator for a lengthy time before slow roasting. To sauce or not to sauce, and whether that sauce is tomato, vinegar or maple syrup based depends on region and personal preference.
So I spent a while tonight massaging spices into huge chunks of pig. The things I do for my friends...
The rub mix could have been doubled; it didn't cover every inch of the two roasts. But the pulled pork is all going in sauce, so if the meat isn't quite as flavorful as it would be with more rub, it won't be a disaster.
The pork is actually for two weeks from today; it will be frozen, then thawed and sauced on game day. This particular dish is meant for a Packers-Vikings game lunch. One can only hope the performance of our home team doesn't cause us to lose our appetites.