Pork Sliders with Crispy Kale Chips

BBQ sauce mis

For the BBQ Pork

  • 2 tsp. canola oil
  • 3-5 lbs. boneless pork shoulder, cubed
  • 2-4 tsp. freshly ground pepper and kosher salt
  • 1/3 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup strong brewed coffee
  • 1 Tbsp. unsulphered molasses
  • 1/4 cup cider vinegar
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 Tbsp. dry mustard
  • 1 Tbsp. chipotle chile powder or New Mexico chile powder
  • 2 tsp. each garlic powder and onion powder

In a heavy-bottomed Dutch oven or rondeau with a lid, heat oil until shimmering.  Salt and pepper the pork cubes and sear them in the oil until well browned.  Remove them from the pan to a plate lined with a paper towel.  Wipe out excess oil and add ketchup, coffee, molasses, vinegar, chicken stock and seasonings.  Whisk well and bring to a low boil.  Reduce heat to low, return heat to the pan and spoon the liquid over the pork.  Cook on very low heat or in a low oven (300 F. for 2-3 hours or until the meat shreds easily with a fork.

Remove the pork from the sauce to a bowl or platter and shred the meat with two forks or with tongs.  Tip the pan of sauce enough to pool any fat on the side; carefully spoon out excess fat and discard.  (Alternately, you can chill the sauce and scrape the congealed, cooled fat after an hour or so.)  Once the sauce is defatted, return the meat to the sauce and stir together well.  Hold warm or cool completely.  Yield: about 6 cups meat and sauce.

For the Buns

  • 1-1/4 cups warm milk (115 F-140 F)
  • 2-1/4 tsp. (1 package) dry yeast
  • 3 cups AP flour
  • 1 Tbsp. salt
  • 1/4 cup sugar

Add the dry ingredients together in a standing mixer and combine with a whisk.  Switch to a hook attachment and add milk, mixing on low until combined.  Increase speed to medium and work the dough until it’s elastic, about 4 minutes.  Turn dough out into an oiled bowl and cover with a towel.  Let rise for an hour or until doubled in size.  Roll dough into 16 small buns or 8 large.  Brush with oil and let rise on baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone liner; cover with a towel.  Preheat oven to 350 F. and let dough rise in a warm place for 30 minutes.  Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until puffed and slightly browned.  Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes before slicing in half and topping with pork. Yield: 8 large or 16 small buns.

For the Kale Chips

  • 1 head kale, stems removed and roughly chopped into bite sized pieces
  • 3-4 Tbsp. canola oil
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • garlic powder (optional)
  • cider vinegar, to taste

Raise the oven heat to 475 F.  Toss kale in oil, season with salt, pepper and optional powder.  Place on a baking sheet and roast for 7-10 minutes, or until crispy.  Remove and let cool slightly before sprinkling with vinegar.  Eat immediately!  Serves 4-8