Monday, October 6, 2014

Saucy Pulled Pork Cornbread Muffins #MuffinMonday

Pulled pork with barbecue sauce is a great savory filling for cornbread muffins, perfect as a take-along for tailgating parties or game day buffets. 

I made slow cooked pork in the crockpot a couple of weeks back. Nothing remarkable about it except that I did use a cloudy apple juice with ginger that I buy in my nearby supermarket. And I hummed in a few ounces of raspberries from a punnet that was getting past its best. As it turns out, apples, ginger and tart raspberries all make delicious slow cooked pork shoulder. We ate the roast the first night sliced, with mashed potatoes and Brussels sprouts. 

Then I shredded the leftovers and added homemade barbecue sauce and we enjoyed barbecue sandwiches on lovely Portuguese rolls, coleslaw on the side, another night. Which left about one cupful of saucy pork as leftover leftovers. I was fully prepared to eat that with a spoon. I warmed it up the next morning and took a bite, but I just couldn’t get over the idea I’d had in the middle of that night before. My husband laughs because there is always a small part of my brain that is planning a meal or working on a recipe, no matter what else the rest of my brain seems to be concentrating on. I put the spoon down and put the bowl back in the refrigerator to chill. 

I had to use that pork to fill some cornbread muffins. 

1 cup or 180g fine yellow cornmeal
1 1/2 or 190g cups flour
4 teaspoons sugar 
4 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cup or 355ml milk
2 eggs
1/3 cup or 80ml canola or other light vegetable oil plus more for the pan

Filling: One cup or 250g pulled pork with barbecue sauce
Optional for garnish: Small pickles or slices of pickle

Preheat oven to 375°F or 190°C. Prepare your 12-cup muffin pan by oiling it liberally with canola or non-stick baking spray. 

In a large bowl, combine cornmeal, flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. 

In another smaller bowl, whisk together your milk, egg and oil. 

Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and beat until fairly smooth, about one minute, making sure to scrape bottom and sides well.  

Divide about two-thirds of the batter among the prepared muffin cups. Add a generous teaspoon of the chilled pulled pork to each. 

Top with the remaining batter.

Add the pickle garnish if using. Mine were the little French cornichons. I drained them on some paper towel, sliced them partially through twice with a sharp knife and fanned them out. A slice of dill pickle would work as well. 

Bake for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned on top and on the sides. 

Remove to a wire rack to cool a little before eating. Do be careful with the first bites because the pork will be quite hot inside. 

Serve with coleslaw on the side to complete the saucy pulled pork muffin experience. 


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