The AGA makes a great pulled pork. The process is simple: brine, rub, slow cook. The recipe takes some planning due to the long brine and cooking times so plan ahead. It brines for 12-36 hours and slow cooks approximately 1.5 hours per pound – basically all day (or night). The Boston butt (pork shoulder) used in the post is 6 pounds.
First you make the dry rub:
- 1 tbsp each of paprika, cumin, cayenne pepper, chili powder, garlic powder, salt, black pepper
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
Mix the ingredients and set aside. If you have smoked salt or smoked paprika, use it.
Make the brine by adding 1/2 cup of salt to 2 quarts cold water. Stir until dissolved. Mix in 1/2 cup brown sugar and 3 tbsp of the dry rub. Wash and dry the pork and place into 2 gallon zip lock bag. Pour over brine, seal bag and put into refrigerator for 12 to 36 hours.
Rub the Pork:
After the brine, pat the butt dry and and place in the small roasting tin lined with foil. If you are using a larger joint that is too big for the small tin then stick it in the Le Cruset dutch oven you got for Christmas last year.
Rub the butt with all of the dry rub mix. Place in tin with the fat cap side up. This will slowly baste the joint during the long slow cook.
Insert your digital remote meat thermometer into the joint but not close to the bone. Place the prepared butt in the simmer oven, uncovered. Cook until the internal temperature is 200F (93C). Plan on approximately 1.5 to 2 hrs per pound. This 6 pound butt took 6:15 to cook.
After the internal temperature has been reached, pull the tin out of the oven and place on top of simmer plate cover to rest. Cover with foil and let rest until temperature has dropped to 170F (77C). It will take approximately 2 hours to rest. This 6 pound butt took 1 hour to reach 170F, uncovered on top of the simmer plate cover.
Pull the pork:
To pull the pork, remove the crusty fat cap and start pulling apart the meat. Use forks or salad tongs or kitchen tongs.
Enjoy the fruits of your labors:
Mix in your favorite sauce or make your own such as Carolina vinegar based sauce, South Carolina mustard based sauce, or the ketchup based red sauce. Enjoy in a sandwich or as a dinner with a side of cole slaw and mac and cheese.