Posts Tagged: coleslaw recipe

Root Beer Pulled Pork and Carolina Coleslaw

Root beer_Pork_Slaw_Top

Hail to Root Beer

Recipes & text by Jim McCaffrey • Photos by Aryn Henning Nichols
Illustrations by Lauren Bonney • Originally published in the Summer 2016 Inspire(d)

Root beer pork coleslaw illustrationsOne of my earliest memories is my dad coming home from work and bringing in a gallon glass jar of root beer that he had gotten filled at the local A&W. He would then proceed to make – for all us kids and friends that might be hanging out – the greatest root beer floats. This happened quite often. At the time we lived in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, and life was a pretty simple.

Mom would spend her days in the garden or washing clothes or baking bread. Us kids would do our best to help her out. But the best event of the day was at the dinner table. There we shared laughs and giggles, pulled pranks on each other, and enjoyed root beer floats. Ah, living the dream.

Life continued on and, of course, circumstances change. Dad got a job as a rural mail carrier in Decorah and we moved. And, somehow, the root beer tradition didn’t follow along.

So, 20 years ago or so, I was perusing the internet and came across this recipe for root beer pulled pork. The pork was served as a sandwich and topped with Carolina Coleslaw. This is a coleslaw that is made with apple cider vinegar instead of mayonnaise. The two flavors of each recipe just instantly bond – it was a marriage made in heaven… or possibly North Carolina. Wow, it blew me away. So this has been in our family repertoire of recipes ever since.

It is a great summer staple and we probably served it four times last summer for our Saturday Summer Concert nights. A year ago, we held our first McCaffrey family reunion at the restaurant and the pulled pork and coleslaw was the star attraction. So much so that we have had numerous requests to bring it to the table again this year. Ok, ok, just twist my arm. These recipes are now part of our family’s traditional cherished jewels. We have shared them with family and friends for the last 20 years, and now we are sharing them with you!

Maybe throw in a couple of root floats for the kids and adults too… it wouldn’t hurt! Now that’s summer!

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Jim McCaffrey is a chef, author, and co-owner with his family of McCaffrey’s Dolce Vita restaurant and Twin Springs Bakery just outside Decorah. He is author of humorous cookbooks “Midwest Cornfusion” and “Mississippi Mirth”. He has been in the food industry in one way or another for more than 40 years.

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PRINT RECIPE HERE
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Carolina Coleslaw
(Look ma, no mayo!)

  • 1 large head of cabbage, finely shredded
  • 1 med green pepper, chopped fine
  • 1 med red onion, chopped fine
  • 2 carrots, grated

Dressing:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2/3 cup canola oil
  • 1 tsp dry mustard
  • 1 tsp celery seed
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar

Mix all vegetables in a (very) large bowl. In a saucepan, combine dressing ingredients. Bring to a boil and stir until sugar is dissolved. Refrigerate until chilled. 8-10 servings. Great to top pulled pork.

Root Beer Pulled Pork

  • 1 2 1/2 to 3 lb pork butt
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 Tbl canola oil
  • 2 med onions, sliced thin
  • 1 cup root beer
  • 1 cup bottled chili sauce
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 cups root beer
  • 8-10 hamburger buns

Sprinkle pork with salt and pepper. Brown meat on all sides in the canola oil. Transfer meat to a 5-quart crockpot. Add onions, 1 cup root beer, and garlic. Cook 4-5 hours on high heat. Make sauce. Combine remaining root beer and chili sauce in a large sauce pan. Simmer and let cook down about 30 minutes. Transfer pork to a cutting board. Using 2 forks shred pork. Place in bowl and add cooked sauce. Mix well. Place a portion on a bun and top with Carolina slaw.

Read more Roots of Food: Family Recipes and Stories here!

The Potluck: Salads!

EmptyPlate2

Taking a Midwest Tradition Local

Story and photos by Aryn Henning Nichols • Photo/Food Assistant Thea Satrom • Originally published in the Summer 2015 Inspire(d)

Getting together with friends is the stuff of summer.

Getting together with friends, eating food grown by friends, is the stuff of a Driftless summer.

When you live in a place like the Driftless Region, you sometimes forget that you’re even eating local…you’re just serving up the produce grown by farmers up the road! They might even be sitting across the table from you – ‘cause this is the Midwest, people. We’re friendly. And we like to potluck.

In case this is your first day in the Midwest, a potluck is “a gathering of people where each person or group of people contributes a dish of food to be shared among the larger gathered group.”

It’s a beautiful thing not just because it’s a great format for a party, but also because sometimes summertime livin’ isn’t so easy; it’s busy. Make it a little simpler by having your friends make all the food. Okay…you still have to make one dish, but that’s a lot better than a whole meal.

What goes into planning a potluck? Just an email, text message, or phone call with a loose “you do a main course, I’ll do veggie, they’ll bring dessert” sort of thing. Take it a step further and challenge potluck-goers to use local produce in their dishes. Buying locally is good for your environment, economy, and – most importantly – yourself. And shopping in season at your area farmers markets and food co-ops is also way more affordable than you’d think!

We put together our own potluck of local foods for this issue – from local shrimp (yep!) to bacon-wrapped dates to a beet and apple salad to cheese curd caprese skewers, we’ve got you covered.

In a pinch and don’t have time to actually cook something? That’s totally okay too! We looked to the bulk section of our local co-op for a few ideas…chocolate-covered ginger, anyone? Goes great with a mint julep, we think!

Make it a potluck-y summer, friends, and enjoy!

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We love a good salad around here – our “regular” is fresh, local greens, walnuts, cranberries, and goat cheese (Yellow River Dairy’s is a delightful local choice!). We went a little out of our norm for the two salads on our potluck list, though, and they turned out to be winners (plus did well on a table for a little bit of time). Check out out potluck salads below, and let us know what you think!

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PRINT RECIPES HERE
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BeetSalad

Beet & Apple Salad

2 T honey
1 T apple cider vinegar
1 T olive oil
Four beets, roasted or boiled, skins removed, sliced into bite sized-pieces
1 Fuji apple, sliced into bite sized-pieces
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
1/4 C walnuts

Whisk together honey, vinegar, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside. Toss walnuts, cooked beets, and apple slices in bowl and combine with dressing. Top with blue cheese and give a little stir. Add another drizzle of olive oil if needed. Season with salt and pepper.

Coleslaw

Coleslaw

1 sm cabbage sliced thin
1/3 C mayo
1T poppy seed
1/4 C cilantro, chopped
2 med carrots, shredded
1 T rice vinegar
1 T honey
1 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper
1 pinch celery seed

Combine all ingredients. Let sit at least one hour before serving so flavors can meld. (Doh, we forgot the cilantro for our potluck, but think it really would have brought this recipe to the top of the chart! Let us know what you think!)

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PRINT RECIPES HERE
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