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Preparing Pulled Pork way in Advance

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StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:19 PM

I'd like to cook pulled pork for my camp out on Sunday.

Does anyone know if it's possible to slow cook a pork shoulder (bone in), for 6 hours on Wednesday - freeze it - then slow cook it for another 2 hours at the camp on Sunday? Would this affect how it fell off the bone?

I'd prefer not to slow cook the entire time I am camping, so it would be helpful to do some prep beforehand.

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    Lmrbest RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:29 PM

    You should re-post this in the Home Cooking board. That being said, Why not just cook it entirely and re-heat. It will still be good on Sunday as long as it's stored properly. For what it's worth, I have had pulled pork that was frozen and re-heated and did not like it, the texture was dry and stringy.

    1. hotoynoodle RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:34 PM

      are you suggesting par-cooking? that's generally not safe with meat. cook it all the way and freeze if you want, then reheat gently in flavorful liquid at camp.

      but honestly? you can cook it and not need to freeze if storing it only 4 days.

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        ricepad RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:35 PM

        What Lmrbest said. Cook it, pull it, freeze it. It reheats well.

        1. LindaWhit RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:36 PM

          Why can't you cook it fully on Wednesday, shred it, add some sauce to it to moisten it, and then freeze it until you want to rewarm it with additional sauce on Sunday?

          1. s
            StepInside RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:42 PM

            If I did cook it, shred it, freeze it with some defatted juices, any suggestions on reheating it other than on low heat?

            1 Reply
            1. re: StepInside
              hotoynoodle RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:47 PM

              if you use high heat the meat may toughen up, so low heat is the best way.

            2. Uncle Bob RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:46 PM

              Completely cook. Do not pull. Do not freeze. Wrap and refrigerate.

              15 Replies
              1. re: Uncle Bob
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                StepInside RE: Uncle Bob Jul 16, 2013 12:47 PM

                And then slow cook it on sunday for an hour or two and then pull it?

                1. re: StepInside
                  hotoynoodle RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:49 PM

                  i'd pull it to reheat. you won't need 2 hours.

                  1. re: hotoynoodle
                    C. Hamster RE: hotoynoodle Jul 16, 2013 01:44 PM

                    Pulling cold pork is difficult. Its always best to pull it when it's warm and soft.

                  2. re: StepInside
                    Uncle Bob RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 12:52 PM

                    No need to cook for two hours if it's completely cooked. Pull, warm and eat.

                    1. re: Uncle Bob
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                      StepInside RE: Uncle Bob Jul 16, 2013 12:55 PM

                      from what I understand, a pork shoulder does not pull easily cold.

                      1. re: StepInside
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                        wyogal RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:04 PM

                        If it is cooked completely, falling apart, it might have a bit of solidified fat from cooling in the fridge, but it will pull fine. Yes, cook it completely, wrap in foil or pull right away, your choice, then simply reheat with some moisture at the site. How will you be cooking? Over a fire? Grills? Kitchen?
                        How long will you be there? Are you arriving at the camp on Sunday, or before?

                        1. re: StepInside
                          Uncle Bob RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:08 PM

                          Not as easily as hot off the pit for sure...but still doable. ~~ In my world 'camp out' means out doors. No oven, no electrical appliances. ~~~ The more meat surface (pulled) that is exposed to the air/freezer/refrigerator the more it will dry out. Repeating. IMO Completely cook. Do not pull. Do not freeze. Take it to the 'camp out', pull and reheat by whatever means is available.

                          1. re: StepInside
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                            StepInside RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:14 PM

                            I'll be camping from friday to monday - chose to cook for everyone Sunday night. Doh!

                            1. re: StepInside
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                              wyogal RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:24 PM

                              Will this be sitting in a cooler or a fridge? How will you reheat it?

                            2. re: StepInside
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                              StepInside RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:25 PM

                              Sitting in a cooler. Reheat by fuel powered stove top.

                              1. re: StepInside
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                                wyogal RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:32 PM

                                If I were set on this particular dish, in those circumstances, I would cook it, pull it, freeze it, then by Sunday it will still be cold, then slowly cook it in a heavy pan over the burner. Will it lose some texture? yes.
                                But, that said... not so sure I would do it at all. My heavy bottomed pans don't fit well over the burner, using something thinner and smaller riskes sorching the bottom before it is heated through. Also, I think it would take more fuel than I'd be willing to use just to reheat.
                                No fire at all? No dutch oven in the coals kind of option? Did you mention how many people you are serving?

                            3. re: Uncle Bob
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                              StepInside RE: Uncle Bob Jul 16, 2013 01:36 PM

                              Around 30.

                              1. re: StepInside
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                                wyogal RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:40 PM

                                That's a big pot of pulled pork to reheat. On a stove top. The more one stirs, the mushier it gets, and in my opinion, gets "too" pulled.
                                Is your heart set on this? Is it a specialty of yours? How primitive is the campsite? any electricity? If so, plug in a slow cooker or roaster.

                              2. re: Uncle Bob
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                                StepInside RE: Uncle Bob Jul 16, 2013 01:44 PM

                                We have four burners, so space won't be an issue. Taken all this advice, I definitely think I've got it.

                                1. re: StepInside
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                                  wyogal RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:46 PM

                                  As long as you have a decent reheating strategy, then, yeah, do it! Woodburner sounds like he/she knows what to do.

                          2. woodburner RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:42 PM

                            I do this professionally for a caterer... hundreds of times. Smoke or slow cook it to 200 internal temp. Pull it and sauce it -- I suggest a vinegar based sauce. It will complement the pork, and not be "over sauced." It will also keep it moist for the reheat. Put into one or several containers. You can freeze and defrost/reheat gently with excellent results. Or you can simply refrigerate and reheat as well. If you want, freeze, then put in a cooler, then 4 days later it will simply be fridge cold and ready to reheat. If well chilled, it will easily last 4-5 days just in the fridge. Holler if you want specifics on rub and sauce.

                            8 Replies
                            1. re: woodburner
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                              wyogal RE: woodburner Jul 16, 2013 01:45 PM

                              How do you reheat it? What would you suggest?

                              1. re: StepInside
                                C. Hamster RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 01:54 PM

                                I cook the pork in

                                1 cup white vinegar
                                1 cup apple cider vinegar
                                1 tablespoon dark brown sugar
                                1 tablespoon cracked black pepper
                                1 tablespoon soy sauce

                                When the pork is cooked, I remove it from the dutch oven and defat the remaining liquid. Voila! This is a delicious sauce! Mix it all back into the meat.

                                Sometimes I also add some ketchup at the beginning or some yellow mustard..

                                1. re: woodburner
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                                  StepInside RE: woodburner Jul 16, 2013 03:03 PM

                                  Really interested in this vinegar based sauce recipe - eastern north carolina?

                                  1. re: StepInside
                                    Seeker19104 RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 03:27 PM

                                    +1

                                    1. re: Seeker19104
                                      woodburner RE: Seeker19104 Jul 16, 2013 06:06 PM

                                      And a pic... mine is the tray, my daughter did the close up on her butt!

                                       
                                       
                                    2. re: StepInside
                                      woodburner RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 06:02 PM

                                      Hey. My understanding is that the western N Carolina goes with apple cider vinegar, some crushed red pepper (a lot, actually), and some ketchup to add a little tomato. The eastern NC is more hard core, without the ketchup!>> Very simple. I go with the western (Piedmont) version, but I cut it with some brown sugar and some water as well. So for one big butt, maybe 2C vinegar, 1C water, 1/2C ketchup, 1 or 2T brown sugar, and 1 or 2T CRP.

                                      I prefer to rub the meat, smoke (or roast) low and slow, get some nice bark on there, then pull and add enough sauce to fully moisten, but not let the meat swim in sauce.

                                      1. re: woodburner
                                        C. Hamster RE: woodburner Jul 16, 2013 06:32 PM

                                        The recipe I originally used added crushed red pepper but I make this for someone who thinks he cannot tolerate ANY red pepper so I leave it out.

                                        I think the heat wod be good,
                                        . But I'd likely add my homemade hot sauce

                                      2. re: StepInside
                                        C. Hamster RE: StepInside Jul 16, 2013 06:38 PM

                                        I have no idea . I live in Boston. Not the BBQ Capitol of the world. It's an Emeril recipe, actually.

                                        I do a bit of part time catering for small groups and its a hit.

                                        And my family craves it.

                                        I should also note that I carefully pull the pork to remove gobs of fat and skin and other unappetizing stuff

                                    3. scubadoo97 RE: StepInside Jul 17, 2013 02:00 AM

                                      Cook fully and pull while still warm. If available vacuum seal packages of your pulled pork and either refrigerate or freeze. The bags can be reheated in simmering water stove top at the camp

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