Pulled Pork with BBQ sauce & slaw

Photographer: Emma
Serves 10-12

This recipe was a collective labour of love.  Very appropriate given that the people cooking it, that very morning were just newly engaged!  This groom-to-be proposed to his Aussie belle, then leap from bed in search of a good solid shoulder of pork like the good hunter-gatherer that he is.  Next thing we know he’s rapping on our door at 8.30am armed with pork, spices, a BBQ, some wood chips and a very fresh fiancé!  Naturally congratulations ensued and subsequently the BBQ was lit under the shade of the trees in the heat of the morning sun.  Whilst the happy couple busied themselves preparing the feast we sat around and busied ourselves with the task of extracting details of the mornings proceedings.  Was the father of the bride-to-be consulted and if so when?  How long was said proposal in the making?  Why the paper ring – where’s the REAL one?!   Have you thought about where/when the wedding is?  Did you suspect he’d been plotting and scheming?  Were you nervous she might say no?!…..

As the sun slowly traced it’s well worn path across the sky, the pork slowly came into it’s tender, caramelised own.  Buns were bought, guests arrived and champagne poured and at last we all sat down to share the feast and toast the happy couple.

And to quote the groom-to-be himself ‘slam it in a bun, crack a beer and enjoy’!


1.5 kg pork shoulder roast
2 tbsp cumin, ground
1 tbsp coriander, ground
3 tbsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp salt
1 tsp cayenne pepper (more or less depending on how much heat you want)
1 tbsp black pepper, freshly ground
1 tsp mustard powder
2 cloves garlic, crushed/1 tbsp garlic powder

1 litre water
1 tbsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp cumin, ground
1/2 tsp cayenne pepper

BBQ Sauce
Liquid collected from cooking pork
Ice cubes
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp brown sugar
2 tbsp bourbon
2 tbsp apple cider vinegar

1/4 red cabbage, finely shredded
1/2 white cabbage, finely shredded
2 carrots, grated
5 spring onion, finely sliced on the diagonal
300ml plain, unsweetened yoghurt
1 tbsp honey
Salt & pepper
1/4 cup slivered almonds

Bread rolls or baguettes to serve


Pulled Pork
1. In a charcoal BBQ, light coals to create indirect heat. This means that the coals, once hot will be pushed to the sides so that the pork can sit above them in the centre of the grill.
2. Place the spices and garlic into a bowl and mix to combine. Rub this mixture into the pork, being sure to really massage it into the meat, making sure that it is well covered.
3. Fill a small metal baking dish with the water, smoked paprika, cumin and cayenne pepper and place this dish in the centre of the coals so that it sits directly below the pork to catch the juice that will fall from it. Sit the pork above and close the lid on the BBQ. Cook low and slow for 8 hours using smoking chips (soaked in beer or water 30 minutes before adding them to the coals) to give the pork a smoky flavour. You will need to add a few more coals to the BBQ over the course of the day.
4. The pork is cooked once it can be easily pulled in shreds from the meat. At this point, remove it from the heat and wrap in tin foil for 20 minutes.

*Alternatively the pork can be cooked in the cooking liquid at 130°C on bake for 5 hours.

BBQ Sauce
1. Place a few ice cubes into the liquid collected from cooking the pork. This will cause the fat to solidify. Remove the ice and wipe away the fat. Repeat until most of the fat has been removed.
2. Pour the remaining liquid into a saucepan and add the tomato paste, bourbon and vinegar. Season to taste.
3. Bring to the boil and simmer until sauce thickens slightly. Remove from the heat and set aside.

1. Place the red and white cabbage, carrot and spring onions into a bowl and mix well to combine.
2. Combine the yoghurt and honey, mix well and season with salt and pepper. Pour over the vegetables and toss. Lastly garnish with the slivered almonds.

To Serve
1. Shed the pork using two forks and place in a large bowl. Pour over the BBQ sauce and give it a good mix to make sure it is all evenly dispersed.
2. Place a good handful of pork into a bun, stop with the slaw and eat!