In the south it is sacrilege to not smoke barbecue. Well I don’t have a smoker and I do have a slow-cooker. In South Carolina, where I live, and really anywhere in the Carolinas there is a BBQ joint on every other block. That is a great thing. Some restaurants do it better than others, of course, but it is all good.
BBQ sauce is the source of many great debates here in the south. Where I live in Greenville, SC, we are in the middle of several regions with clearly defined sauce preferences. The western parts of the Carolinas generally prefer tomato based sauces. The upstate of SC to the midlands prefer mustard based sauces. The midlands of SC and foothills of NC go for the vinegar based sauces. A small portion of the southern part (in the middle) of SC and into GA prefer (gasp) ketchup based sauces (yuck). I like all of them but my favorite since I was a kid is the mustard based, so that’s what I go with. I found a great recipe here at the Food for my Family site. Before I continue, sauce is a condiment that you add after. You don’t cook BBQ in sauce, you just don’t do it.
I never owned a slow-cooker. My cable TV provider (stick with me) has a rewards program that gives you points each month. Once a month they offer up items you can get using your points. I got a slow-cooker. So now I have this thing and have no clue what to do with it. Well, here is what I did with it first.
- 1 2 to 4 pound boneless pork shoulder (whatever will fit in your slow-cooker)
- 6 potato buns (or your favorite hamburger buns)
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 2 tablespoons brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons hot paprika
- 2 teaspoons mustard powder
- ½ teaspoon ground cumin
- ½ cup apple cider vinegar
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 teaspoon liquid smoke
- 3 tablespoons Dale’s marinade (or soy sauce)
- Salt and pepper
South Carolina Mustard Barbecue Sauce Ingredients
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/3 cup onion, minced
- ½ cup yellow mustard
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
- 1 ½ tablespoons hot sauce (Tabasco or Texas Pete)
- Salt and pepper to taste
Blue Cheese Coleslaw Ingredients
- 1 package shredded cabbage
- 1 package broccoli slaw mix
- 1 cup blue cheese crumbles (less or more if you like)
- 1 cup coleslaw dressing (less or more if you like)
- 2 tablespoons plain Greek yogurt
- Salt and pepper to taste
Baked French Fries Ingredients
- 3-4 baking potatoes cut into fries
- Olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Combine 1 tablespoon of the brown sugar, the paprika, mustard powder, cumin, 2 teaspoons salt and ½ teaspoon pepper in a small bowl and combine. Rub the pork until covered.
- Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add vegetable oil and heat until it shimmers. Sear the pork on all sides until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove the pork and add a ½ cup or so of water. Whisk to remove any bits and drippings from the pan. Add that liquid to your slow-cooker.
- Add the vinegar, tomato paste, remaining brown sugar, liquid smoke and Dale’s marinade plus another cup of water to the slow cooker. Whisk to combine. Add pork and more water if needed. Cover and cook on low for 4 hours. After 4 hours, turn the pork over and cook for another 4 hours.
South Carolina Mustard Barbecue Sauce Directions
- In the meantime, heat a sauce pan over medium heat. Add butter and cook until melted and add the onion and garlic. Once the onion becomes transparent and soft, add the yellow mustard, brown sugar, apple cider vinegar and hot sauce. Whisk to combine and reduce heat, simmer for about 10 minutes. Remove from heat until cooled slightly. Pulse with an immersion blender until smooth, season with salt and pepper to taste. Allow the sauce to cool completely. Place in the refrigerator.
Baked French Fries Directions
- Soak fries in salty water for 10-15 minutes (minimum), drain and dry thoroughly. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Put the fries in a large bowl and toss with oil to cover and season liberally with salt and pepper. Line a large sheet pan with non-stick aluminum foil and add the fries. Bake at 450 degrees for 10 minutes and cut the heat to 400 degrees and cook for another 5-10 minutes. Flip the fries over and continue cooking until you achieve desired doneness.
Blue Cheese Coleslaw Directions
- In a large bowl add the cabbage and broccoli slaw mix, blue cheese, yogurt and less of the dressing then you think you’ll need, toss to combine. Taste and adjust for seasoning. Add more dressing just before serving if need be. Place in the refrigerator.