I’m convinced that it is a universal truth that Mondays are crazy days.
In my house, we all kind of have to reset ourselves after having had extra down time on the weekend. Christopher muddles over the necessity of doing lessons, His Majesty wakes up asking for Daddy, and spends the first part of his day looking for him, and I have to catch up on whatever tasks I neglected over the weekend in favor of embracing and enjoying the extra time with my family, plus keep on top of my daily tasks. Add that to the fact that homeschooling actually doesn’t involve as much time at home as one might assume, and it’s pretty nuts around here.
Because of this mania, Monday is often a crock pot kind of day. And Pinterest is absolutely loaded with crock pot ideas. One of our favorite crock pot dishes is Mexican Pulled Pork. It is easy, versatile, and delicious, plus, it makes so much that we end up with leftovers, which makes it even more spectacular. Plus, it is great if you work, because it has a long cook time.
The original recipe is here. I change some things, specifically a few quantities of items, just for my own convenience. You’ll need these ingredients to start:
Plus, I love these:
They make cleanup a breeze. We get them at the grocery store, down the aisle with the tin foil.
Ok, so chop your cilantro and toss it in the fridge for later. I like to do as much prep as possible in the beginning of the day, so that when the 5pm “witching hour” is upon us, there is less to worry about. Then, stick a liner in your crock pot, throw in the pork loin (Mine was about 2.5 lbs, and made 6 generous servings). I don’t cut it up in bite sized pieces. It’s going to be shredded anyway, and after 7 hours in the slow cooker, it falls apart beautifully, so I don’t bother with the extra work and mess of cutting it into small pieces.
Anyway, throw in the intact pork loin. Then add 3 cloves of minced garlic and the entire can of diced chiles (mine came in a 7 ounce can, so I went with that slightly reduced quantity) to cover the top of the pork, and the dump the whole can of chilpotle salsa over everything. The original recipe calls for less, but I just don’t like to waste, plus, we like our stuff extra saucy, so it works out. Add about 1/4 cup of water to the crock pot, cover it, and turn it on.
Towards the end of the the 7 hours, I always check the temperature with a meat thermometer. Pork should be 160 degrees F.
Next, you want to make yourself some rice. I use minute rice. I know, it’s not “real” rice. But rice is essentially just a nutritionally void filler, so I don’t really worry too much about the fact that I serve a modified substitute for it once a month. Minute rice is easy. I make 4 servings, subbing 1/4 cup lime juice for 1/4 cup water, and then I add 1/4 cup of cilantro like the original recipe calls for.While you’re waiting on the rice to boil, shred your pork with two forks.
Try not to tear the liner, though, or your easy clean up won’t be as easy. Still easier than crusted on food, but if you can manage, go easy on the liner.
When the rice is done, you’re ready to dish it out.
Now, it’s delicious as is. Except that I don’t eat a lot of starch (unless it’s really worth it, like movie theater popcorn, or an amazing dessert prepared by my friend Emily), so I always skip the rice with my serving. Plus, yesterday was Taco Night at our house, and (because menu planning is such a great timesaving tool that prevents waste) I intentionally cut up extra toppings (tomato, cheese, avocado, and lettuce) and got out the salsa and sour cream. So, my plate ended up looking like this:
My son has put his pork inside flour tortillas and eaten it like a fajita before, and that was really good too. Like I said, it’s a versatile dish.
And it’s so good!
Now, all you have to do is clean up:
Wasn’t that easy?!
Anything to help Mondays pass just a little bit easier.