Welcome to the world of Make It Scotch, where we champion a lifestyle centred around quality meat production. Our philosophy cherishes the bounty of Scotland's rich landscapes, prioritising fresh, local, and high-quality ingredients. From the lush, green pastures that raise world-class livestock to the pristine waters that offer the freshest seafood, Scotland's commitment to excellence in food production is second to none, as showcased by the rigorous standards upheld by QMS (Quality Meat Scotland).
Come with us on an exciting culinary voyage as we celebrate the myriad of ways pulled pork has been celebrated across the globe, from mouthwatering pulled pork sandwiches to pulled pork burrito recipes, slow cooker pulled pork in a barbecue sauce and some great ideas for leftover pulled pork. Discover how Specially Selected Pork takes centre stage and transforms the simplest pulled pork recipe into something truly magnificent.
So grab your apron and let's get cooking!
Why Choose Specially Selected Pork
When it comes to cooking, quality is key. Specially Selected Pork represents not only the pinnacle of Scottish pork production but also a commitment to exceptional quality, ethical farming practices and sustainability.
It promises the following:
➡️ Ethical Farming Practices:
Pigs raised under the Specially Selected Pork banner enjoy high welfare standards. These animals are raised in environments that prioritise their well-being, ensuring they lead stress-free lives, which in turn, contributes to happier animals and more tender and flavorful meat.
➡️ Sustainable Production:
Scottish farmers under this program adhere to sustainable farming practices, focusing on minimal environmental impact. From efficient waste management to water conservation, Specially Selected Pork is a beacon of eco-friendly meat production.
➡️ Rich Flavor Profile:
Due to a combination of the Scottish climate, natural diet, and traditional rearing methods, Specially Selected Pork boasts a unique flavour profile. The meat is known for its juiciness, tenderness, and a subtle sweetness that stands out.
➡️ Support for Local Farmers:
Opting for Specially Selected Pork means you are supporting local Scottish farmers who are dedicated to maintaining Scotland's rich culinary heritage. You are not just purchasing pork; you are investing in a community and its age-old traditions.
➡️ Transparency and Traceability:
Every cut of Specially Selected Pork can be traced back to its farm of origin. This level of transparency ensures that consumers are always informed about the source of their food.
In essence, when you choose Specially Selected Pork, you are buying more than just quality meat - you are also opting to support the dedication, quality, and tradition that has been nurtured over generations.
What is the Best Cut of Pork for Pulled Pork?
The signature quality of pulled or shredded pork is its melt-in-the-mouth texture, which is achieved through slow cooking. The choice of cut plays a crucial role in ensuring the desired texture and flavour.
So what are the best cuts of meat to use?
✅ Pork Shoulder (Boston Butt):
The pork shoulder, often referred to as the Boston Butt or sometimes called Pork Butt is located at the upper part of the pig's front shoulder. This cut has a beautiful balance of meat and fat, ensuring that the pulled pork remains juicy and flavourful during the slow-cooking process. The inherent marbling aids in imparting a beautifully dark and rich taste.
✅ Pork Picnic Roast (Lower Shoulder):
The Pork Picnic Roast has a slightly higher bone content and can be a tad leaner than the Boston Butt. Though it can also be used for pulled pork, it might yield a slightly different texture and flavour due to these distinctions.
✅ The Significance of Fat Content and Marbling:
The fat content in pork ensures moisture retention, preventing the meat from drying out during long cooking hours. Marbling when melted, gives the pulled pork its distinct flavour and the collagen, present in abundance in the shoulder, breaks down during slow cooking, transforming into gelatin that lends the tender pulled pork its soft, fall-apart texture.
Ask the Butcher: If in doubt, lean on the expertise of your local butcher and they will be delighted to help you choose the right cut of meat for your recipe.
The Versatility of Pulled Pork in Global Cuisines
The versatility of pulled pork, with its tender texture and ability to absorb flavours, makes it a beloved ingredient in various cuisines worldwide. Whether used in traditional dishes or innovative fusions, pulled pork continues to delight palates across the globe.
Here are a few favourites:
➡️ American South:
Classic BBQ Pulled Pork: Slow-cooked with regional barbecue sauces, from tangy apple cider vinegar in North Carolina to sweet brown sugar and molasses in Kansas City.
Pulled Pork Sliders: Mini buns topped with coleslaw and a dollop of BBQ sauce, these are the best-pulled pork sandwiches you will ever taste!
Carnitas: Traditionally cooked in large copper pots, this dish features pork shoulder crisped to perfection and is commonly used in tacos, burritos, and tamales.
Pulled Pork Enchiladas: Rolled tortillas filled with pulled pork and smothered in a red or green chilli sauce.
Chinese Char Siu: A Cantonese version where pork is marinated in a sweet and savoury sauce and then roasted.
Vietnamese Bánh Mì: A sandwich that layers pulled pork with pickled vegetables, coriander, and spicy aioli on a French baguette.
Korean Pulled Pork Lettuce Wraps: Pork cooked with gochujang (red chilli paste) and served in lettuce cups with kimchi.
Italian Pulled Pork Ragu: Slow-cooked with tomatoes, garlic, and herbs, then served over pasta or polenta.
French Rillettes: Slow-cooked pork shredded and mixed with its fat, similar to pâté but with a rougher texture.
Classic British Favourite: Marinated in spices, brown sugar, and a generous splash of Worcestershire sauce, then slow-cooked to perfection. Ideally served on crusty rolls or with traditional sides like mashed potatoes and green beans.
Cuban Mojo Pulled Pork: Marinated with a garlicky citrus mojo sauce and then slow-cooked until tender.
Jamaican Jerk Pulled Pork: Rubbed with jerk spices and slow-cooked, then often paired with rice and peas or used as a filling for sandwiches.
➡️ South American:
Brazilian Pulled Pork Empadas: Savoury pastries filled with pulled pork and local spices.
Chilean Pulled Pork Sandwiches (Chacarero): Served on a bun with tomatoes, green beans, and chilli peppers.
Pulled Pork Curry: Pork cooked in rich and aromatic Indian spices, tomatoes, and cream.
Pulled Pork Naan Wrap: Spiced pulled pork wrapped in a soft naan with pickled onions and mint chutney.
Moroccan Pulled Pork Tagine: Slow-roast pork with dried fruits, nuts, and a blend of Moroccan spices.
South African Pulled Pork Bunny Chow: Hollowed-out loaf of bread filled with spicy pulled pork curry.
➡️ Middle Eastern:
Pulled Pork Shawarma: Marinated in Middle Eastern spices and then roasted, commonly served in a pita with tahini and pickles.
Pulled Pork Pies: A twist on the traditional meat pie, using pulled pork as a filling.
Pulled Pork Pizza: Topped with barbecue sauce, red onion, and pineapple.
How to Make the Perfect Pulled Pork?
There is no use in denying that pulled pork, with its rich flavours and melt-in-the-mouth texture, is a crowd-pleaser. Whether you are making sandwiches, or tacos, or serving it straight up with some coleslaw, achieving the perfect pulled pork requires patience, the right cut of meat, and some attention to detail.
Here are a few top tips on how to make pulled pork:
➡️ Selecting Your Cut:
The pork shoulder is the most popular cut for pulled pork. When selecting, look for a piece with a decent amount of marbling throughout, which will melt during cooking to provide moisture and flavour.
Before seasoning or marinating, trim away any excess fat from the outer layer. This helps in achieving a better browning and crust on the outside, without making the dish overly greasy.
➡️ Seasoning and Marinating:
Rub your pork generously with your choice of spices. Common choices include a blend of brown sugar, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt and pepper.
If you have time, let the pork marinate overnight. This allows the flavours to penetrate more deeply.
➡️ Slow and Steady Cooking:
The secret to tender pulled pork is slow cooking. You can use a slow cooker, an oven, or a smoker.
When using an oven, preheat to 225°F (105°C). Place the pork in a roasting pan or Dutch oven, fat side up. This allows any remaining excess fat to render and self-baste the pork.
Cook for 6-8 hours or until the internal temperature reaches about 195°F (90°C). You will know it's done when it is tender enough to be easily shredded with a fork.
➡️ Let it Rest:
Once cooked, remove the pork from the oven and let it rest for about 30 minutes. This allows the juices to be redistributed, ensuring moist meat and robust flavours.
➡️ Shredding the Pork:
Using two forks, start pulling the meat apart. You will notice how easily it shreds after the slow cooking process.
If you come across any pockets of pork fat while pulling, remove them to ensure a consistent texture throughout.
➡️ Serving Suggestions:
Mix the pulled pork with your favourite barbecue or tomato sauce or serve it with a side of sauce for those who prefer it juicier.
You can serve pulled pork on buns for a classic pulled pork sandwich or use it as a topping for nachos, in tacos, or as a main with side dishes of your choice.
✅ Pro Tip:
The key to mouthwatering pulled pork is patience. Do not rush the cooking process. Allowing the pork to cook slowly ensures all the collagen, connective tissues, and pork fat break down, resulting in meat that is incredibly tender and flavourful.
Embarking on the journey of perfecting pulled pork is as much about experimentation as it is about tradition. Just as flavours evolve, so can your take on this classic dish. Whether you are drawn to the Italian flare of a ragu or the British twist with Worcestershire sauce, remember that the heart of cooking lies in making a dish your own and enjoying it with your nearest and dearest.
Where Can I Find Specially Selected Pork Near Me?
If you are looking for Specially Selected Pork near where you live, look no further than our user-friendly interactive map. All you need to do is enter your location and the map will show you the nearest Scotch meat butcher or supplier in your area!
Supporting Scottish Farmers
By buying Specially Selected Pork, you are also supporting our incredible Scottish farmers who are working hard to preserve time-honoured farming traditions and ensuring that only the best produce graces our tables.
Click on the map and cook something truly special for your family and friends today!
What makes Scotch InCREDible?
Let us take you on a journey into what makes Scotch Beef, Scotch Lamb and Specially Selected Pork so special, and how we produce such inCREDibly high-quality meat renowned and enjoyed worldwide.