Slow Cooked Pork in Tonkatsu Sauce (Japanese Barbecue Sauce)

pulled pork tonkatsu on pancake (500x342)

I may have mentioned this before, so I’m sorry that I’m saying it again, but pork can be a very very boring meat. Of course, if you like eating the crackling from a joint of roast pork, then I can see that that makes it more interesting, but not being a fan of crackling myself, I’ve never really enjoyed eating pork as a roast dinner.   However, slow cooked with herbs, spices and various condiments, pork suddenly becomes a much more interesting dinner prospect.   My favourite way to eat it is slowcooked in homemade barbecue sauce.   The sauce has to be homemade as I find bought barbecue sauces far too sweet and in fact for years I thought I didn’t like barbecue sauce because of that.

When Janice at Farmersgirl kitchen announced that the theme for this month’s Slow Cooker Challenge would be barbecue I was actually a little disappointed.  I already have a favourite slow cooker barbecue pork recipe (which I also often make with chicken) and I have already shared it here.   I would just have to experiment with something else.   I don’t know much about Japanese food but I did know that they have a type of barbecue sauce.   I read quite a few recipes and got ideas from here and there when coming up with the recipe.   I know that the pomegranate molasses is probably not found in many Japanese tonkatsu sauces, but it does add a sweet-sourness that goes well in this particular sauce.

In Japan, tonkatsu sauce would normally be served as a side dish for dipping breaded pork into rather than for cooking a whole joint of pork like this so this whole meal is definitely not a traditional Japanese dish.   I actually made this around pancake day and so served the pork wrapped in pancakes.   Of course, wrapped in any type of bread would also be lovely or even with rice.  I actually put the leftovers in some quesadillas the next day.

I am also linking to The Spice Trail, which features ginger this month.  It is hosted by Bangers & Mash.

Ingredients – Serves 4-8

4 tbsp ketchup

2 tbsp soy sauce

1 tbsp rice wine

2 tbsp worcestershire sauce

2 tbsp pomegranite molasses

1 tsp mustard

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 small knob of ginger, finely chopped or grated

1 kg piece of pork

2 tsp cornflour

How to Make Slow Cooked Pork in Tonkatsu Sauce

  1. Remove as much of the outside fat as you can from the pork.   There will still be plenty of fat in the pork and it will stay very moist as it cooks.

  2. Mix together all the other ingredients.   Taste the sauce and adjust any of the ingredients to your taste.

  3. Pour the sauce over the pork and put it in the fridge to marinate for a couple of hours or even overnight.

  4. Pour a little water over the pork so that it is almost submerged and then cook on low for 8-9 hours.

  5. Take the pork out of the slow cooker.   Put the pan on the hob and simmer the sauce to reduce.  To thicken the sauce after it has reduced, add a couple of teaspoons of cornflour dissolved in cold water and stir.  While the sauce is reducing, shred the  pork using 2 forks.   Pour the warm sauce over the pork to serve.

pulled pork in rolled pancake (500x292)

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Slow Cooked Pork Chops in Barbecue Sauce

This was such a delicious meal.   I would have said a few years ago that I didn’t really like barbecue sauce.   I didn’t really see what the fuss was about.   However, since I started making my own sauce, that opinion completely changed.   Of course, you can just make the sauce and not cook the meat in the sauce, but I love to cook pork ribs or chops in the slow cooker together with the sauce so that they absorb all the delicious flavours.  I love how the pork tastes afterwards and the way it just falls apart on the fork.

This recipe makes plenty of sauce so if you are just serving 2 people then you will have some sauce left over, which will keep in the fridge for a few days.   If you are serving up to 4 people, then as long as you have room for more chops in the slow cooker, then you won’t need to make more sauce.

The great thing about this dish is that it is so quick to mix together the ingredients for the barbecue sauce.  You can easily prepare it in the morning, put it in the slow cooker and then come home to a delicious meal in the evening.   I served it with salad and bread, but it would be lovely with chunky chips or potato wedges.

pork chop and barbecue sauce(500x301)

Ingredients – Serves 2 with some sauce left over

40ml balsamic vinegar

20ml Worcester Sauce

150ml tomato ketchup

1 tsp fennel seeds

2 cloves garlic, crushed

1/2 small red chilli pepper

1/2 small green chilli pepper

1 tbsp soft brown sugar

1 onion, chopped

2 pork chops (add more for more people)

How to Make Slow-cooked Pork Chops in Barbecue Sauce

1. Use a measuring jug to mix the sauce ingredients so you can easily see how much you are adding.   Add all the liquids first and then the fennel seeds, garlic, chillies and sugar.

2. Pour a little sauce into the bottom of the slow cooker.  Sit the pork chops on the sauce.   Sprinkle the chopped onion over the top and then top with the rest of the barbecue sauce. Add a little water so that the pork is almost covered, but make sure it doesn’t wash the sauce off the chops.

3. Cook slowly for 7-9 hours.

4. Take the chops out of the sauce and put the sauce over a high heat to reduce and thicken.  It should take a maximum of about 10 minutes.

5. Serve the sauce over the pork chops.

I am linking this to Friday Food Frenzy.

Shredded Pork Quesadillas

This is my second month taking part in the Secret Recipe Club.   I enjoyed it so much last month I definitely want to keep taking part, even though things are quite hectic at the moment and I’m not managing to blog as much as I’d like and am also way behind on reading other people’s blogs.   Anyway, this month I was paired with Melissa from Melissa’s Cuisine.   She has some great recipes and I couldn’t decide at first whether to try one of her steak or chicken marinades or to go with this.   In the end, as pulled pork is something I’ve been meaning to make for a long time, I decided that this should be the month to try it. Melissa used pork ribs, which I love, but I decided to get a small shoulder of pork and cook it in the slow cooker and then shred it.   This meant I had lots of pork leftover for more meals.   Always a good thing.    The barbecue sauce was really easy to make and the quesadillas were then really simple to put together.  The only thing I would change would be to make the barbecue sauce slightly less sweet, but this might just be a personal thing as I don’t normally like to mix sweet and savoury together.   Although I didn’t use the exact same proportions as Melissa, she did warn that it makes quite a sweet sauce and so next time I would use even less sugar – maybe just a teaspoon.   Apart from that, this was definitely a success and something that I will make again.   For the Melissa’s original recipe have a look here.

I am also linking this to Family Fresh Cooking.

Ingredients – serves 2

2 flour tortillas

Approx 300g shredded pork

Approx 80g grated cheese

Barbecue Sauce Ingredients

1 tbsp brown sugar

100ml ketchup
2 Tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 clove crushed garlic
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 red chilli, finely diced
How to make Shredded Pork Quesadillas and Barbecue Sauce
1. I put some pork shoulder in the slow cooker in the morning and in the evening it was ready.   I removed all the fat and used two forks to shred it.   You could also roast it in the oven if you prefer.
2. To make the barbecue sauce, add all the sauce ingredients to a small saucepan.   Bring to the boil and let simmer for about 15 minutes.   Mix the pork into the sauce and heat through.
3. Put a tortilla in the bottom of a frying pan.    Cover with the shredded pork then the cheese.  Put another tortilla on top.   Leave to cook over a low heat for about 5 minutes.
4. Turn the tortilla.    Slide it onto a plate.   Put another plate on top.    Flip it over quickly then slide it back into the pan.   Cook for another 5 minutes.
To see what other Secret Recipe Club members have made, click on the link below:

Slow Cooked Barbecue Ribs

This is my first month of taking part in the Secret Recipe Club. If you like the idea of being a secret agent then this is the perfect event to give you that feeling.  About a month ago I was sent my assignment: 365 Days of Baking.  This blog is written my Lynne, who manages to bake something every day.   Now that is impressive!   So even though she only began her blog this year there are over a hundred recipes on her site, so I didn’t have any trouble finding things I wanted to make.   I liked the fact that part the reason for her writing a blog was to have a place to keep recipes she’s been given by family and friends and one of the things I liked most about her site is that she rates all her recipes, with 1 rolling pin being the worst, and 4 rolling pins being the best.    Once I discovered this through a little secret investigation, I decided to focus on her best recipes – the ones with 4 rolling pins.

It wasn’t long before I came across this recipe for barbecue spare ribs.   It was a long time since I’d last made spare ribs, before I began my blog, and I’ve never posted a recipe for them, so I knew at that moment that what my blog was lacking was a killer spare rib recipe – and it seemed like I might have just found it.   Now, the last time I made spare ribs I made them in my slow cooker and they turned out absolutely gorgeously and the one slight issue Lynne mentioned with this recipe, was that the meat was not quite at the falling off the bone stage in some places.     As I’m going through a slow cooker phase at the moment, I decided to adapt the method but the ingredients are almost the same.

And the verdict:  They were lovely, the meat was tender, falling off the bone and full of flavour and the sauce was amazing.   According to my husband:  ‘This is the best new recipe you’ve made in a long time’.   Need I say more.   It looks like I’ll be making them again soon.

If you don’t have a slow cooker, don’t worry, just have a look at the original recipe on 365 Days of Baking.

Ingredients – Serves 2

500g ribs

1 tbsp light brown sugar

20ml  Worcester Sauce

30ml soy sauce

20ml cider vinegar

40ml ketchup

2 red chillies

1/2 tsp mustard

1 clove of garlic, crushed

Pinch black pepper

How to make Barbecue Ribs

  1. Mix all the ingredients for the sauce.

  2. Arrange the ribs in the bottom of the slowcooker.    Pour the sauce over the top.   Add a little extra water so the ribs are covered.    Cook for 9 hours.

  3. Before serving, drain the liquid into a small saucepan and boil to reduce.   Serve the reduced sauce over the top of the ribs.

To see what everyone else has make, click on the link below: