We are not ready for winter!
Already missed are the early mornings on the deck, drinking coffee and watching the sun come up before we tackled our days. The last minute walks down to the library to return books just under the wire. The flip-flops. The blasting of the a/c right along with the blasting of the music as we drive down to the states just as the leaves begin to change color.
It’s official. It’s cold as all hell. Snowing even as we speak.
Time to put away all the days of summer and pull out all the layers of winter.
That includes using our crock pot on a regular basis. We have no idea why slow cooking our food feels more like a winter-y appropriate activity. We use our slow cooker all year long but there is just something about looking outside, seeing the cold, filling a crockpot with delicious goodness and anticipating the warmth from within.
A few weeks ago, we got a large bag of fresh cranberries from our local CSA – speaking of which, do you take part in a local Community Shared Agriculture? If you haven’t, spend a few minutes checking out your options. It’s a great way to support local farming and it helps kick start your journey to the hashtag #dontbeafraidofyourkitchen. We made a really delicious sweet potato/cranberry/sausage stuffing for Canadian Thanksgiving (waaaaaaaay back in october) but still had 1/2 bag of cranberries and no idea what to do….
Enter the crockpot.
Here’s a little advice for you if you don’t know what to do with a few ingredients sitting in your fridge: GOOGLE THE CRAP OUT OF THOSE ITEMS.
Eventually you’ll find something and usually it’s gonna be pretty darn good. That’s what we did and that’s how we came across this little doozy. We changed a few things according to our tastes and what we had and we always suggest you do the same.
Paleo Slow Cooked Cranberry Balsamic Pulled Pork
- Pork Tenderloin (we used a 20oz piece)
- 1 Tbsp FoC (fat of choice)
- 2 Cups Fresh Cranberries (for a sweeter taste use 1 cup dried cranberries)
- 1 Large Leek (cleaned and sliced) or medium onion (peeled and sliced)
- 1 C Chicken broth
- 1/4 C Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 Tbsp dried Oregano
- 1 Tbsp dried Basil
The only “man do I have to do this step” is the very beginning. You have to brown your tenderloin. Lock in those juices friend! LOCK IN THOSE JUICES!!!!
In a large skillet on medium/high heat, add FoC (we usually use bacon grease) and brown tenderloin on all sides. Usually about 2-3 minutes on each side (brown! Not burnt!). After completing this somewhat hassle of a step, throw that delicious hunk of meat into the bottom of your crock-pot.
Add remaining ingredients!
Very important step coming up here so pay attention: Cook on LOW heat for 8-10 hours. Not all slow cookers are created equal so pay close attention to your cooking times. Sometimes we’ll read a recipe that says cook all damn day on low and it actually cooks for us in under 5 hours. We know how our slow cooker operates and with this particular recipe 8 1/2 hours was just about perfect.
The Cranberries are fairly tart once the whole shebang comes together so we paired it with a sweet potato and turnip mash.
We’re ready now.
~Now that’s good eatin’ Folks!