Merciful God, You are great in compassion and Your tenderness for us is without measure. We ask You to give us today our daily bread, and also provide for the needs of all of Your hungry children around the world. Through Christ Your Son and Our Lord. Amen.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Kalua Pork and Cabbage


Last week we celebrated the feast of St. Damien of Molokai with a Ohioan/Hawaiian luau (Ohio because that's where we are!). We have learned about St. Damien at home and my children find his life to be fascinating (who wouldn't?). We've never enjoyed Hawaiian food, however, and so I wasn't sure what to expect. I asked Esther for a recommendation on typically Hawaiian food and she told me that Kalua Pork and Cabbage is one to try. She gave me a link for a crock-pot method, which is the one I made. But now that I know what I'm looking for in terms of taste, I think I'll try the other method she gave me, which is a little more jazzed up. I must say, however, that almost every recipe I found for Kalua Pork is exactly three ingredients: pork, salt, and liquid smoke. Pretty simple stuff.

I admit I was hesitant about the liquid smoke in this recipe. I don't like a smoky flavored BBQ sauce and I was afraid the smoke flavor would be overwhelming, but because the list of ingredients is so basic, there didn't seem to be any way around it. I used a Mesquite flavored liquid smoke (which is apparently a mild flavor) and it was very natural tasting -- it tasted as though it had been smoked outdoors. My family loved the flavor and the texture of this tasty pork and I think we will enjoy it again -- it's just too bad St. Damien's day only comes once a year.

Kalua Pork
serves 6

about 3 lbs. Pork butt or shoulder
3 T. concentrated liquid smoke (I used the mildest Mesqite flavor)
3 T. Kosher, rock, or Hawaiian salt (I used Kosher, but if you can find Hawaiian that might be a real treat)
Small head of cabbage

Place pork roast in the crockpot. Pour liquid smoke over it and sprinkle with salt. Fill crockpot with water to cover.

Cook on high for 4-6 hours. Roast should pretty well fall apart when stuck with a fork. Remove pork from crockpot and let sit until cool enough to handle.

Cut cabbage into large chunks and place in the broth of the crockpot and let cook on high until cabbage is tender. When pork is cool enough to handle, shred and add back to the crockpot until serving time.

Serve cabbage and pork over hot white rice.



Sara said...

Shouldn't it have Kahlua in it????

scmom (Barbara) said...

Well...I'm kind of glad it didn't. I don't think I want coffee flavored liqueur in my pork! ;-)

Kahlua (with an h) -- brand of coffee flavored liqueur
Kalua (no h) -- roast pig

Esther G. said...

Barbara, glad your family enjoyed this recipe. Sometimes I make it with chicken like I mentioned to you. I leave out the cabbage because my son doesn't like it but will cook some cabbage separately for my husband and me. I also make a KLTs with the leftover for my son...Kalua (Chicken or pork), lettuce and tomato in a roll. He and his friend loved it the first time I made it for them. BTW, mahalo for the mention.

scmom (Barbara) said...

I didn't like the leftover pork, Esther, but it is probably because of the cabbage. Do you heat it for your son or serve it cold?

E.Clare said...

I just wanted to pop in and say hello:) I found your blog last night and today made the fudge cocoa cookies (big hit with the kids - and husband!). I have just started reading some of your previous posts and you can feel the love for your family in every recipe:) I hope my kitchen is a place of nurturing and nourishing for my family too - can't wait to try some more of your recipes.

I am so glad you decided not to close the blog seeing I only found it less than 24 hours ago! I was a reader drawn here by googling caramel puffed corn, which is something we don't have here in Aus (we do have plain puffed corn as a cereal), and I wanted to try making it. I was side tracked by the cookie recipe though so caramel puffed corn will have to wait till another day!


scmom (Barbara) said...

So glad you found me, Ellen, Thank you for taking a minute to leave a kind comment. I'm glad your favorite people liked the cocoa cookies. I hope the caramel puff corn works out for you. I have a recipe here for caramel corn, too, if you can't find puffed corn but have popcorn.

E.Clare said...

Thanks Barbara - and I realise I shouldn't have abbreviated Austrlia to Aus, although you can probably tell from the spelling differences:) We do have plain puffed corn cereal so I will try it with that, people here eat caramel popcorn but I had never heard of caramel puffed corn till recently.

I am reading back through your autumn/fall recipes and really enjoying all of your pumpkin recipes. Pumpkin certainly isn't appreciated enough here in Australia - we don't have canned pumpkin for example - and most people only think of it as a 'savoury' food. I on the other hand adore pumpkin so I can't wait to try out your recipes and try to convert friends and family!

Love your food photography by the way!


Esther G. said...

Barbara, I microwaved the pork (sans cabbage since my son does not like it)

Heidi said...

This sounds really good! I love to use the crockpot on hot days. We live in a bilevel so our main living area is on the second floor which can get hot even with AC.