I've bought pork shoulder from the same local butchers for a long time, and I buy it there because of the quality, price and convenience as much as - logically - the local aspect. Not all butchers have it in stock but most should source it for you easily.
As I say, the recipe has changed a bit over the years and I've cooked it on the barbecue and in a slow cooker, but this is the oven method, as it will suit more people. As ever, remember I am not a trained cook so use common sense when handling food and follow best practice when cooking anything.
1.5-2kg Pork Shoulder - deboned, and if it's tied up untie it.
1 Apple - Sliced
1 Onion - Sliced
1 Garlic Bulb - Split and cloves slightly crushed
6 sprigs of Rosemary or 2 tsp of dried
I tsp of Caraway Seed
1 tsp of Fennel Seed
1 tsp of Juniper Berries
1 tsp of Yellow Mustard Seed
1 tbsp of Cider Vinegar
1 tbsp of Mustard
1 tbsp of Tomato Sauce
1 tbsp of Barbecue Sauce
1 tbsp Brown Sugar
1 tsp of Smoked Paprika
Anything else you fancy!
- Set the oven to 150°C.
- Make a bed with the apple, onion and garlic in a large, deep roasting tray and place the shoulder, skin side up, on top.
- Put good splash of water in the tray, enough to cover the 'vegetables' half way up then add the cider vinegar, caraway, fennel, juniper, mustard and rosemary into the water.
- Season the pork with salt and pepper, and cover with two layers of tinfoil. Place in the oven and cook for at least 4 and preferably 6 hours.(Check when cooked that the inside temperature is at least 185-190°C.)
- Remove tinfoil and put the shoulder on a rack on a new tray, remove the skin and place on another tray. Place both in the oven at 200°C for 20-30mins until the shoulder starts to brown a little and the separated skin is crisp and blistering.
- While this is happening heat the tray that has the vegetables, spices and liquor on a hob until it starts to boil. Mash the vegetables and add the mustard, tomato sauce, barbecue sauce, smoked paprika and brown sugar, stirring constantly. Add more water, or pork - or chicken - stock if necessary to prevent the tray from burning.
- Sieve contents into a saucepan and boil on the hob, reducing to a thick gravy consistency, skimming off any fat. Adjust flavour to suit your palate by adding more of the core ingredients.
- Remove pork from oven and let sit for 15 to 20 mins, then shred using two forks. (I cheat by cutting the beef into large, thick slices first!) Discard any large pieces of fat.
- Place meat in a large saucepan and add the reduced, hot gravy. Let sit for a few minutes.
- Remove crackling and let it cool, season to taste.
Serve whatever way you like, but I prefer it in a bread roll or or a wrap with mustard coleslaw and bacon jam, with a serving of roast veg, stuffing and the crackling on the side.
It's great the next day in a pie too, just add peas and parboiled potatoes. (Make up a little stock and add it to the mix to keep it moist.)
Kids love it on a sambo for lunch too with tomato sauce and mustard!
It should do you for 4 to 5 meals at the very least, just be sensible about its storage, so it works out great value for money.
Enjoy your cheap meat!