We all know how Keri likes it when she can mix food AND booze together, so my Southern Sloshed Pulled Pork gets made A LOT around The Casa.
I chuckled a bit reading the recipe as written in that link, because I never just make this stuff one pound at a time these days! I use 4-5 lbs roasts, typically, and double the seasonings (but not the Jim Beam,) in the crock pot.
Why cook so dang much Keri?
LEFT OVERS!! I always have this pulled pork all cooked up and frozen, ready to be used in different ways. Pre-seasoned, pre-cooked BBQ pulled pork is a great place to start for all kinds of yummieness you might never consider “BBQ” pork for.
Like what, you say?
WHAT YOU NEED:
1 small peach (or 1/2 to ¾ can peaches well drained)
1 poblano pepper roasted, skin and seeds removed (see below – it’s easy.)
Optional ground cayenne pepper
4 tortillas (I like the “fajita size” – a nice thick quesadilla is plenty filling with all of this goodness oozing out!)
4 oz shredded BBQ Pork (or other meat – 2oz per quesadilla is a good amount without being so much that everything can’t stick together well)
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon onion powder
¾ teaspoon cumin
¾ teaspoon chili powder
Optional diced jalapeno
1 ½ -2 cups shredded cheese of your choice (I used a combination of “casserole mix” and mozzarella
*this will serve 2 people/ make 2 quesadillas
WHAT YOU DO:
If you are using a fresh poblano, now is the time to get it roasting so you can do the other prep while it steams. If you haven’t done this before it is super easy and makes a chile or pepper taste like heaven. You can do it on your grill, or directly on your gas burner, but here I used a small skillet.
Heat a dry skillet over high heat on the stove, and then place your pepper on the hot surface. Allow each side to blister and then turn to the next, until all sides are done:
Take the skillet off of the heat, cover the pepper, and allow to steam for 10-15 minutes. DON’T take the lid off or you will lose all of that steam!
While you let the pepper do it’s thing, mix up your filling and start your salsa.
In a bowl, combine the pork with the garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, chili powder, and diced jalapeno (if you want – I really like the kick and the crunch they add, you can see I used about 1/4 cup of the pickled variety, and I dice them up so they are spread out in the quesadilla.) Mix well to combine everything with the pork and set aside.
If you are using a fresh peach, remove the skin and the pit. Add your peach to a blender or food processor.
Uncover your pepper – the skin will be loose from the body of the pepper, so giving it a gentle rub under some cool water will remove all of that blistered skin. It is also easy to pull the end with the stem off and remove the seeds from inside the roasted pepper. Add this to the peaches, and blend until any large chunks are gone:
At this point you want to taste the salsa! (Taste when you cook! It is the easiest way to know if you are on the right track, and plus, who doesn’t want to sample the goodness?) If it is a bit bland (not tasting the actual flavor of the ingredients you just blended,) add a pinch of salt and give it another pulse. (Go in small pinches, it is easier to add more than to try to offset oversalting!) If you are looking for a little more heat, add a sprinkle of the ground cayenne (Like I did here.)
When your taste testing results in a salsa that is perfect for you, refrigerate while you assemble your quesadillas.
This isn’t rocket science, and I am not going to pretend it is. I like to cook quesadillas on the George Foreman Grill (or a sandwich press because OH! YOU FANCY LIKE THAT,) but if you prefer to bake, or heat in a skillet, then go for it.
What is important for structural integrity of the final product is cheese distribution, people.
Lay your “bottom” tortilla down, and start with a good layer of cheese. On top of that spread 2 oz (half if you are making two like I did here,) of the meat mixture evenly over that cheese. Let some areas of cheese show through. Then, spread another good layer of cheese over the top of that, and place your “top” tortilla on the whole thing. Now cook.
Cheese on both sides ensures that neither of the tortillas will go sliding around up against the filling when everything gets hot. Allowing some cheesy areas to show through that filling layer means that the two sides will be “glued” together so it doesn’t just split in half on you when you are eating it.
It’s a science AND an art form, folks…. and I have spent years perfecting it. It is my gift to you.
Cook 6-8 minutes until the outside gets crunchy and you can see cheese oozing on the sides. Let it stand a minute before cutting (again, this will aid in a structurally sound quesadilla. Trust Keri.)
Serve with the salsa generously piled in a dish for dipping/slathering. The hot filling and gooey cheese complemented by the cool, fresh, bright flavor of the salsa make for a perfect bite.
Hooray for the leftover pork!