Crockpot BBQ Pulled Pork

On cold, rainy blah days I usually feel like using the crock pot to cook. I like those days when I’m busy, or just don’t feel like standing in the kitchen in the evening, when I can toss something in the crockpot and just literally forget about it until dinner time. This is one of those meals.

Today I just had a lot to do. Catch up on laundry, do school with the kids, teach my son that you cannot put a little bit of a roll of toilet paper into the toilet and then flush repeatedly to let the ENTIRE roll go down the toilet. I also had to teach him that he still needs naps and that he cannot repeatedly come out of his room during naptime. He also learned that if he holds his food out towards our dog, Duke, and tell him “no”… Duke will not listen. He will eat the food being held out to him. The experiences today were the normal… 3 year old testing mommy on what she’ll say no to today… because yesterday I learned the other stuff she said no to. Exhausting. Tiring. But… rewarding. I wouldn’t change the opportunity to mother these babies for anything. Not a thing. I’m blessed beyond what I ever could have imagined.

Now… to the easy dinner I made. 🙂 I really think it took me MAYBE 10 minutes. Maybe.

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My recipe is adapted from this great blog: http://www.sixsistersstuff.com/2012/03/slow-cooker-smoky-bbq-pulled-pork.html

Ingredients:
2 lb pork shoulder roast (mine did not have the bone in)
1 Tablespoons paprika
2 1/2 tsp himalayan sea salt
2 tsp fresh black pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1 packet instant coffee (7 oz.)
1 tsp unsweetened baking cocoa
2 Tb olive oil
1 (16-20 oz) bottle of your favorite BBQ sauce
Buns or… like me, if you don’t have any or time to make some… use sliced bread!

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Ok, take a minutes to look at the picture above. Seriously. I put that in the crockpot FROZEN with the seasoning rub on it. I then covered the crockpot with tin foil to keep all of the heat in it, and had it on LOW all day. The CRUST on the outside of that pork was AMAZING! It looked and tasted like I had it in a smoker or a grill. I didn’t even sear it!!!! The inside of the pork was juicy and tender and just fell apart!!! This was probably the best shredded pork I have had out of my crock pot to date. Amazing. My husband said “restaurant quality!”. Try it. Seriously.

Directions:
Spray the inside of slow cooker with non-stick cooking spray (or use a slow cooker liner). Combine paprika, salt, pepper, garlic powder, unsweetened cocoa and instant coffee in a small bowl and set aside. Drizzle olive oil over the roast and rub in. (My roast was still frozen. I did NOT thaw or sear it at all, and it still came out AMAZING!) Take the seasoning and rub all over the roast, covering all sides. (Optional: poke your roast with a large fork a couple of times to let the flavors really soak in). Place lid on slow cooker and bake on low for 8-10 hours (or high 5-6 hours). Shred meat when finished and add bottle of BBQ sauce. Serve on buns or sliced bread and enjoy! You can serve this with a cold salad, cole slaw, potato salad.. or just some fruit and veggies! Endless options!

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For the quote of the day: There has been speak a lot in the media and different blogs that I follow that talk about mom shaming, bullying, just overall judging others. We all know it’s wrong too! What is it? Most likely insecurity. We’ve gotta stop it! Let’s look at ourselves in a positive light, and build others up around us. I’ll start! 🙂

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Salted Caramel Popcorn

So, my friend had her annual Oscar party last night and I had no idea what to bring. I was trying to bring something that I already had stuff for at home… and I need to go grocery shopping. PLUS my birthday was on Saturday and I had just spent the whole weekend NOT cooking and laying around! HA! So… what to do?!?!?!

I went thru Pinterest like a mad woman! I was looking for an easy recipe that had just a few ingredients that I already had in my cupboard. I couldn’t do “Oscar” shaped cookies, or fancy cheesecake filled strawberries, or bacon wrapped filet etc… lol. It had to be SIMPLE.

And then…. I saw it. Golden – PERFECT color! – warm and easy with just a few ingredients…. Salted Caramel Popcorn! YES!

So I start making it and I realize I do not have brown sugar. So, I being an emotional woman, break down into tears. Yes, tears. It was a sad sight. My husband looked at me very strangely and did what any good husband would do: He went quick to my mom’s house to get me some brown sugar. 🙂

And here it is!

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I did NOT use my own recipe, I got it off of this great blog that came to me in my time of need! 🙂

http://cookiesandcups.com/salted-caramel-popcorn/

Check it out!

Salted Caramel Popcorn
Makes about 16 cups of caramel corn
 
Ingredients
  • ½ cup unpopped popcorn kernels (about 16 cups popped corn)
  • 1 cup salted butter
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • ⅓ cup light corn syrup
  • 1½ – 2 tsp kosher or sea salt, divided
 
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 300°
  2. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. Set aside.
  3. Pop popcorn kernels using air popper into a large bowl.
  4. In a small saucepan melt butter, brown sugar, corn syrup and 1 tsp salt together over medium heat. Bring to boil. Boil for 4 minutes without stirring.
  5. Pour caramel mixture over popcorn and stir to coat evenly.
  6. Pour popcorn into lined pan, sprinkle remaining salt on top (1/2 tsp – 1 tsp depending on your personal taste preference) and place in oven. Bake for 30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes.
  7. Allow popcorn to cool on a parchment lined counter.
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Notes
You can add in 2 cups of nuts to the un-coated popcorn if desired! Coat with caramel as states!
– I didn’t follow her recipe exactly because I do not have an air popcorn popper, I have the oil popper. I also do not have parchment paper, so I used sprayed tin foil. AND, I did not have a full pound of butter… so I reduced all of the amounts of the ingredients for the caramel. I also added about 1/2 tsp of vanilla to the caramel mixture. Other than that I followed her recipe and it came out perfectly!!!

ENJOY!

And now, for the quote of the day:

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Blueberry Banana White Chocolate Bread

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This bread was AMAZING!!! Besides the fact that it smells like absolute HEAVEN when it’s baking… DELICIOUS… oh man… dessert, breakfast, mid-day snack… whatever. YUM! My family loves it, and I brought it as a snack to my friends… and they enjoyed it too!!! YUMMY!!!

Ingredients:

1/2 cup unsweetened organic applesauce
2 Tb butter at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar (or could use 1/2 cup honey)
2 cups all purpose flour
1/2 tsp sea  salt
3/4 tsp. baking soda
2 ripe bananas mashed
1 tsp. vanilla
2 eggs
1/3 cup organic low-fat PLAIN yogurt

1 cup white chocolate chips
1 cup blueberries (DRY, fresh. Then toss in 1 Tb of flour.) I used frozen, thawed and dried a bit on a paper towel and tossed in 1 Tb of flour.

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1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a 9×5-inch loaf pan with cooking spray.
2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking soda and salt.
3. In a separate large bowl, beat the sugar and butter and applesauce with an electric mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 1 minute). Add the eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition. Add the banana, yogurt, and vanilla; beat until blended. Stir in the flour mixture; just until moist. Don’t over-mix. Stir in the chocolate chunks and then gently stir in the blueberries. If you want, you can sprinkle a few additional chocolate chunks and blueberries on the top to make it look pretty.
4. Spoon the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 15 minutes in the pan on a wire rack. Remove from pan and cool completely on the wire rack.

*This recipe turns out perfect for me, so here are the details: We bake at sea level in a greased glass blue pyrex pan and we bake on the middle rack in a electric oven.
*If you use frozen blueberries, dry off and toss in flour. Do not wash and then toss in, you want to DRY as much as possible so you don’t add too much moisture.
*If you bake in a dark metal pan or if you are baking at a different altitude or using an gas oven, you may possibly get different results.
*Oven temperatures can vary quite a bit, so if you have an oven thermometer that is helpful to see if yours is recording the right temperature.
*If the top is browning too quickly, cover the top with foil in the middle of baking to prevent it from browning further.

Bake, and ENJOY!!!

 

Quote of the Day:

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Easy and Quick Big Group Breakfast!!!

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Scrambled Egg Croissant Sandwiches

Ingredients:

1 dozen eggs
1/2 to 3/4 bag of Jimmy Dean sausage crumbles
6 slices bacon (I used pre-cooked TJ nitrite&nitrate free bacon)
2 TB milk (I used unsweetened organic coconut milk… you could use organic 1/2&1/2)
1/2 bag of shredded cheddar cheese
salt and pepper to taste
20 croissants

 

Scramble eggs w/the milk until 1/2 way cooked. Add sausage and cooked bacon (microwave bacon until crispy) and add salt and pepper as desired. ( I don’t add too much salt because of the cheese, bacon and sausage. Scramble until cooked through. Put into 9×13 pan to serve and top with shredded cheese to desired amount. Then, cut the bakery (or pillsbury) croissants in half and make a breakfast sandwich. Easy, and enough to feed many!!!