Friday, June 1, 2012

Chipotle Pork Roast

I love chipotle peppers! They're smoked jalapenos that are usually canned in a kind of sweet adobo sauce and they're spicy and full of flavor. This recipe is just something I ended up putting together because I wanted chipotle peppers and I found pork roast in the market on sale ($4 for a 2 lb roast). Plus, I wanted a protein to accompany the redneck spaghetti that I was also making.

Ingredients [serves 4 to 6]
2 lb pork roast (I used a pork loin, but pork shoulder a.k.a. pork butt would also be great but those are usually huge, 5 to 7 lbs, so you'll have to adjust the amount of sauce ingredients to accommodate that sucker)
7 oz. can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
1/2 onion
3 or 4 cloves of garlic
2 cups Coca Cola (I used Mexican Coke, which is made using cane sugar, not corn syrup)
2 tablespoons brown sugar
olive oil
salt & pepper
Roughly chop up the onions and crush and peel the garlic. I crush the garlic with my knife and the skin pops off super easily. It's also a good way to get out your frustrations.

Rinse the pork, pat dry with a paper towel, and then season it liberally on all sides with salt and pepper.
In a large pot, one that's big enough to fit the pork roast, heat up some olive oil. Saute the garlic and onions until they start to get a bit of color. Push them off to one side to make room for the pork roast.
Place the roast in the pan and let it brown on all sides. Then add in the chipotle peppers, Coke, and brown sugar. Give the sauce a stir, flip the roast around to get it coated, and then place a lid on the pot. The Coca Cola serves a few purposes - it adds moisture and sweetness and color. If it weirds you out, you could just add water and increase the amount of brown sugar. You could also use any other cinnamon-based dark soft drink. I've seen barbecue sauces made with root beer and Dr. Pepper and Mr. Pibb so if that's what you have in your fridge, go for it.
Let the roast cook for two hours over a medium-low heat until it's tender, turning it every half an hour to make sure that the seasoning penetrates all sides of the meat evenly. When it's done, you should be able to just pull some meat off using a pair of tongs because that's how tender it should be. I suppose that this could also be made in a slow cooker but I feel like the meat could end up tougher and kind of dry if it's left alone in a crockpot all day long.
Remove the roast from the sauce and place on a serving platter.
Slice the meat into 1/2" thick portions. You can go thinner or thicker depending on your preference but I like this size. It's still hearty without being cumbersome.
Meanwhile, turn up the heat under the pot to thicken the sauce. Use a potato masher or fork to break up any huge pepper pieces. Once it's thickened to your liking - I like my sauce to be the consistency of melted ice cream - take it off the heat.
Pour the sauce over the roast. If you have extra, put it in a bowl so sauce lovers can liberally douse their servings on their own.
... and serve. Enjoy the tender, moist pork with its sweet and spicy sauce.

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