Are you a fan of pulled pork but not sure if you can make it from a cottage roll?
Look no further! In this article, we’ll explore the possibilities of turning this boneless pork shoulder butt into a delicious pulled pork dish.
But first, let’s learn a little more about cottage roll and how to cook it to perfection. With a little bit of patience and some helpful tips, you’ll be able to create a mouth-watering meal that will leave your taste buds begging for more.
So, grab your crockpot and let’s get cooking!
Can You Make Pulled Pork From A Cottage Roll?
The short answer is yes, you can make pulled pork from a cottage roll. However, it’s important to note that cottage roll is not the same as pork roast and requires a different cooking method.
Cottage roll is a boneless pork shoulder butt that has been cured in a sweet brine, giving it a unique flavor. It’s often referred to as cottage ham and can be found packed in netting at your local grocery store.
To make pulled pork from a cottage roll, you’ll need to cook it low and slow in a crockpot for several hours until it’s tender enough to pull apart with a fork. Simmer the cottage roll for 3 to 4 hours on your cooker’s High setting, or twice that time on the Low setting. Turn the pork midway through your cooking time, so each half spends an equal length of time submerged. The roll is cooked when it reaches an internal temperature of 160 F, or it can be cooked further until a fork slides easily into the muscle.
Once the cottage roll is cooked, remove any netting and separate the fat from the meat using two forks. This may take some patience, but trust us, it’s worth it. The broth you can make from the cooking water makes the BEST veggie soup and can be used in other recipes as well.
To make pulled pork, simply shred the meat with two forks and mix in your favorite BBQ sauce. Serve on rolls with coleslaw for a delicious meal that will satisfy any craving for pulled pork.
What Is A Cottage Roll?
A cottage roll, also known as a cottage ham, is a boneless pork shoulder butt that has been cured in a sweet brine. The brine is usually made up of water, salt, sugar, sodium erythorbate, and sodium nitrate, though ingredients may vary by brand. The sugar in the brine gives the meat a sweet taste, and the salt makes it salty. Cottage roll is often compared to ham in terms of flavor, but it has its own unique taste.
Cottage roll is relatively inexpensive and can be found at most grocery stores. It’s typically sold wrapped in netting and sealed in plastic. While some people remove the netting before cooking, it’s not necessary as it won’t affect the taste of the meat.
To cook cottage roll, it’s best to use a slow cooker or crockpot. Simply place the meat in the pot and add enough water to cover it. Cook on low for several hours until the meat is tender and falls apart easily with a fork.
Once cooked, cottage roll can be served on its own or used to make pulled pork. To make pulled pork, simply shred the meat with two forks and mix in your favorite BBQ sauce. Cottage roll broth can also be used to make delicious vegetable soup or other recipes.
Choosing The Right Cut Of Meat
When it comes to making pulled pork, choosing the right cut of meat is crucial. While it is possible to make pulled pork from a cottage roll, it’s important to note that this cut of meat is not typically used for this purpose. Cottage roll is a boneless pork shoulder butt that has been cured in a sweet brine, giving it a unique flavor. It’s often referred to as cottage ham and can be found packed in netting at your local grocery store.
For the best results, experts recommend using a pork shoulder or related cut for making pulled pork. Most agree that the pork butt, also known as the Boston butt, is the best choice due to its tenderness, texture, and flavor. If you can’t find a Boston butt, the picnic shoulder is the next best option. Both cuts are from the shoulder area and are great for making pulled pork.
It’s important to note that not all cuts of meat are created equal when it comes to making pulled pork. Pork shoulders and related cuts are relatively inexpensive and the meat itself can be very forgiving. Undercook it (within the limits of safety) and it might be tough, but it will still taste good. Overcook it and you can still serve it with a smile. Pork allows you to practice your barbecue skills and still be able to eat your mistakes.
When selecting your meat, look for ample marbling and connective tissue. That way, as it slowly cooks, it softens and becomes so tender that it pulls apart easily. Pork shoulder does all that, which is why most recipes that show you how to make pulled pork call for this cut. Your recipe may specify pork shoulder blade roast, pork shoulder roast, or boneless pork shoulder; all of these are from the shoulder and are great for making pulled pork.
Preparing The Cottage Roll For Cooking
Before cooking your cottage roll, it’s important to prepare it properly. Start by removing any plastic packaging, but leave the netting on. The netting is used to hold the roll together while cooking. You can rinse the cottage roll if you prefer, but it’s not necessary. Some people suggest rinsing for about 5 minutes, while others say a quick rinse will suffice to get some of the salt off the surface, and some don’t rinse at all. It’s up to your preference.
Once you’ve prepared the cottage roll, there are several methods you can use to cook it. One popular method is to simmer it in water or a broth. Add the cottage roll to a pot or Dutch oven along with onion, carrots, bay leaves, and peppercorns. Cover with water and bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce the heat and simmer for 1 to 1-1/2 hours, depending on the size of the roll. After simmering, remove the meat from the liquid and place it in a baking pan. Brush with a honey mustard and brown sugar mixture and reserve the liquid to cook cabbage. Place the roll in the oven on “warm” while you cook the cabbage.
Another method is to cook the cottage roll in a crockpot. Place the roll in the crockpot along with water and cook on high for 4-5 hours or on low for 5-7 hours until it’s tender enough to pull apart with a fork.
Regardless of which method you choose, once your cottage roll is cooked, remove any netting and separate the fat from the meat using two forks. This may take some patience, but it’s worth it for a delicious meal.
Slow-Cooking The Cottage Roll
To slow-cook the cottage roll, start by removing the plastic and netting from the meat. Place it in the crockpot along with 3 cups of water and cover it. Turn the crockpot onto high and cook for 4-5 hours, or alternatively, cook on low for 5-7 hours. Check to see if it’s finished cooking by testing if you can separate it with two forks with ease.
When it’s finished cooking, remove the cottage roll from the crockpot and transfer it to a plate to cool for 5 minutes. Get another plate or container to hold the meat and separate the fat from the meat using two forks. One fork should hold the meat in place while the other gently scrapes the fats off. Put all the fats back into the crockpot with the cooking water.
You can enjoy your delicious cottage roll with some mashed potatoes and gravy or any other side of your choice. To make broth from the remaining cooking water, add 15 cups of water to the crockpot and cook on low overnight. If your crockpot isn’t big enough, just add as much water as you can and cook overnight, then add remaining cups of water in the morning.
In the morning, skim off any fat chunks and put them into a container if you are going to utilize them or discard them. Turn off the crockpot and allow the broth to cool. Transfer the broth to a container or pot and put it in the refrigerator to solidify any remaining fats onto the top so you can remove them. Once cold and fats are removed, your broth is ready to use or freeze.
Shredding The Cottage Roll For Pulled Pork
Now that your cottage roll is cooked and ready, it’s time to shred the meat for your pulled pork. Shredding the meat can seem daunting at first, but it’s actually quite simple with the right technique.
First, place the cooked cottage roll on a large cutting board. Use a large knife to cut the meat into large pieces. Then, insert two forks into a piece of meat and pull in opposite directions to get long, thin shreds. Repeat with the remaining meat until it’s all shredded.
It’s important to note that cottage roll has a unique texture and may not shred as easily as other cuts of pork. If you’re having difficulty shredding the meat with forks, try using your hands to pull it apart. The heat from the meat will make it easier to handle, and you can use gloves or a clean towel to protect your hands.
Once the meat is shredded, mix in your favorite BBQ sauce or seasoning blend. You can also add some of the cooking liquid to keep the meat moist and flavorful. Serve on rolls with coleslaw or other toppings for a delicious pulled pork sandwich.
If you’re not planning to use all of the pulled pork at once, divide it into shallow containers and refrigerate for up to 3 days or freeze for up to 3 months. This makes meal prep a breeze and ensures you always have some tasty pulled pork on hand.
Serving Suggestions For Cottage Roll Pulled Pork
Now that you’ve made your delicious cottage roll pulled pork, it’s time to think about how to serve it. Here are a few suggestions:
1. Pulled Pork Sandwich: This is the classic way to enjoy pulled pork. Serve the meat on a soft roll with a generous helping of coleslaw and your favorite BBQ sauce. You can also add some pickles or jalapeños for an extra kick.
2. Pulled Pork Tacos: For a Mexican twist, serve your pulled pork in warm tortillas with some sliced avocado, cilantro, and lime wedges. You can also add some diced onions and tomatoes for extra flavor.
3. Pulled Pork Pizza: Yes, you read that right! Spread some BBQ sauce on a pre-made pizza crust, top with the pulled pork, and sprinkle with some shredded cheese. Bake in the oven until the cheese is melted and bubbly.
4. Pulled Pork Nachos: This is another fun way to enjoy your pulled pork. Layer tortilla chips on a baking sheet, top with shredded cheese and the pulled pork, and bake in the oven until the cheese is melted. Serve with your favorite toppings like sour cream, guacamole, and salsa.
5. Pulled Pork Quesadillas: This is a quick and easy way to use up any leftover pulled pork. Simply place some shredded cheese and the pulled pork between two tortillas and cook in a skillet until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are crispy.
No matter how you choose to serve it, cottage roll pulled pork is sure to be a hit with your family and friends. Enjoy!