Cider Braised Pork

Apple Cider Braised Pork

Earlier this month we drove up to Kenosha Pass for a bike ride through the trees. We were not alone-- the lot off of the Colorado Trail was packed even by 9 in the morning, a bustle of people, dogs, and babies getting ready for the trail. 

Apple Cider Braised Pork

Once we started up the trail the crowds thinned; on bikes we were able to get ahead of the walkers and wanders. After an initial thirty minutes of hill climbing, it was more than just the altitude taking our breath away: the vast aspen groves were golden yellow, sometimes red. The valley was washed in buckets of fall light, and the skies were a perfect lapis blue, dotted with fluffy clouds. 

"This is the part where you just want to die and go to heaven," my mom said. (At first I thought she might mean there is another big hill, i.e., You'll want to die trying to bike up this thing! but then I took in everything around me and thought, Yes, I could stay awhile.) 

At home, a slow cooker full of cider braised pork-- homey, slightly sweet, fall-apart tender- awaited our hungry post-ride stomachs. Honestly, at that point we were so hungry anything would've done the job but then and I thought: This is what September feels like.

Apple Cider Braised Pork
Apple Cider Braised Pork

Cider Braised Pork

Paleo, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free    |       |    Print This Recipe

Flavors of fall in a homey, slow cooker dish.

Serves: 4   |    Total Time:



Ingredients:

  • 1 pound pork shoulder, cubed
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 onion
  • 2-3 stalks of celery
  • 2-3 large carrots
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 cup apple cider (hard cider or apple juice)
  • 2 cups bone broth
  • 2 springs each thyme and rosemary
  • Salt & Pepper

Directions:

  1. Heat coconut oil in the bottom of a pan or your Instant Pot. Place pork in pot, and brown on all sides. If you are browning meat in a separate pot, place the pork in your slow cooker/Instant Pot now.
  2. Mince garlic. Chop onion into wedges, slice carrots into rounds, and dice celery. Place all in the slow cook. Pour cider and broth in. Season with salt & pepper, and top with thyme & rosemary springs. Set slow cooker on low setting and cook for 10 hours (set Instant Pot to slow cooker setting).
  3. Optional: after stew is done cooking, spoon it into an oven-safe dish (such as a cast iron pot) and place under broiler for 5-10 minutes, to brown the top of the pork a bit more. Serve hot over sweet potato mash!

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Slow Cooker Korean Pork Cabbage Cups

This is a popular recipe from Foraged Dish and new photos were added! Same recipe :)

Slow Cooker Korean Pork Cabbage Cups

The newest craze in this house is Korean Pork Tacos. It started with a simple slow cooker recipe, and before long, Oliver was saying, "Let's make a double batch and just have a huge taco party!" Meanwhile, I was finding creative ways to add the leftover pork to just about every meal: topped with a fried egg, over salad, even just topped with sesame seeds and hot sauce. Hey! Everyone has their own means of expression, right? 

Slow Cooker Korean Pork Cabbage Cups

I didn't realize it until now, but these cabbage cups (the filling also makes killer tacos with corn tortillas) remind me of San Francisco. There's no rhyme or reason. No specific nostalgic memory in my mind that I can tie back to these tacos, but still, they make me think of San Fran. I think it's the way that East meets West in a single bite -- from the umami pork to the bright, fleshy mango in the salsa. 

That contrast is like the steep hills of San Francisco. The tall, brightly colored apartment buildings. The small, crowded shops of China town. A little slice of culture. In a taco. 

Slow Cooker Korean Pork Cabbage Cups
Slow Cooker Korean Pork Cabbage Cups

Slow Cooker Korean Pork Cabbage Cups

Published March 6, 2016 by
   Print This Recipe

Serves: 6   |    Active Time: 12 hours



Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds pork shoulder or pork stew meat
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup traditionally fermented soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 heaping tablespoon chili paste
  • 3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • Juice of one orange
  • 1 tablespoon ginger, minced
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • To serve (mix and match to your preferences!): cabbage leaves, mango salsa, hot sauce, avocado, kim chi, sesame seeds, etc

  • Directions:

    1. Heat the coconut oil in the bottom of a slow cooker that has a sauté setting or a skillet. Place pork in pot once heated, and brown on each side (about 5 minutes each side). Once brown, either turn off sauté setting or transfer pork to slow cooker. Place onions in slow cooker as well.
    2. In a jar, stir together the remaining ingredients (soy sauce, sesame oil, honey, chili paste, vinegar, orange juice, ginger, garlic, onion powder). Pour mixture over pork and place lid on slow cooker. Cook on low for 8-10 hours. (Note: you can use an Instant Pot (affiliate link!) for this recipe, but set it to the Slow Cooker setting).
    3. After 8-10 hours, open slow cooker and use a slotted spoon to remove pork from cooking liquid, and place on cookie sheet. Shred pork using tongs and a fork and spread into single layer on sheet pan. Turn oven to broil and cook pork for 5-7 minutes, until the top pieces become crispy.
    4. Assemble cabbage cups to taste and serve!
    5. Note: this pork also makes great tacos with corn tortillas.

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