Hump Day Comfort Food: Mac n’ Cheese with Pulled Pork-Topped Bratwursts

Sometimes, it’s best to not overcomplicate things. Tonight, I made macaroni and cheese using a very tried and true recipe: Betty Crocker’s. It’s not fancy, but it’s delicious. I also made pulled pork using literally the first recipe that pops up when Googling such things: Chow.com’s Easy Slow Cooker Pulled Pork.

When I first started getting adventurous in the kitchen last summer, buying a large cut of pork to slow-cook and shred was near-monumental. It felt like a major commitment, and a huge responsibility – in no way did I want to screw up such a large cut of meat. I know it’s not a gorgeous rack of lamb or anything like that, but for me, it was huge.

Today, with my newfound confidence, it was a different story altogether. Between 7:10am and 7:30am, I was able to complete 90% of the work for the pork – all before rushing to get ready for the day. I very quickly sliced up onions and garlic, eyeballed the proportions for a spice rub (no clean measuring spoons, so actual tablespoons/soup spoons were utilized), patted down the shoulder/butt (whatever the butcher meant by that labelling), and slapped the rub all over the meat. With the sliced onions and garlic in the crockpot (along with a little bit of chicken broth), I tossed the pork in as well. It was amazingly easy, and completely uncomplicated. I probably should have left it at that.

I didn’t though – I tried to get fancy instead. In attempting to do so, I successfully made my first barbecue sauce. Unfortunately, it tasted nothing like the Bullseye I usually mix into my pulled pork. In fact, it was the exact opposite of what I was expecting, as the cookbook I was using mixed up its pictures. I won’t get into the details of how I didn’t notice the error until the last minute (my sauce was yellow and spicy; I was looking for it to be ruby red and sweet, despite adding nothing close to that colour, and including habaneros), but suffice to say, I’m saving that sauce for another day and another post.

I guess I was reminded today that simple is okay, and that the “tried and true” are constantly revisited for a reason.

Unfortunately, I’m also remembering the part where I told myself to keep this blog post short so as to actually get a proper night’s sleep tonight. Let’s pretend I completed all points I set out to make tonight, which I think I did…

Anyways, not meaning to complicate this any more, just know that I made simple comfort food from very popular sources, it was awesome, and I’d love to share pictures of them with you. With that, I’ll simply say, “until next time – happy cooking!”

DSC_0062
Part of the mess Mateja came down to discover this morning (oops). My cut of meat was a bit smaller than what the recipe calls for (~3 lbs instead of the 4 1/2 lbs suggested), so I didn’t use up all the rub.
DSC_0066
Originally planning a more intricate meal, you can see I opted for not only pulled pork, but a store-bought bratwurst as well.
DSC_0069
Seeing as there was very little colour to this meal, I probably should have added some broccoli or something else that’s both healthy and bright. Instead, I opted for beer, and a brown ale at that!
mac n cheese pulled pork
Yes, I’m fully aware that you can’t actually see any of the bratwurst in this one. You live, you learn.

****************(Updated 04-24-2015)***************************

I just wanted to mention that I am once again joining in on the fun over at Fiesta Friday. Though this dish was originally created for Wednesday (hopefully that’s what you assumed when you saw “Hump Day” in the title), Fridays can be in need of comfort food just as much as the middle of the week. Co-hosting with Angie this week are Effie @ Food Daydreaming, and Jhuls @ The Not So Creative Cook. Anyways, to all participating, “Happy Fiesta Friday!”

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4 thoughts on “Hump Day Comfort Food: Mac n’ Cheese with Pulled Pork-Topped Bratwursts

  1. Hello, J. Happy Fiesta Friday to you, too.
    I agree with you – we don’t have to complicate things sometimes. There are times that we need just simple meal, but tastes great. This sounds fantastic and filling. Thank you for sharing. I hope you enjoy the party. 🙂

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  2. We can all do with a bit more confidence in the kitchen, or at least the confidence to try more different kinds of recipes. I look forward to seeing your yellow and spicy sauce! Thanks for sharing your recipe with FF#65

    Like

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