Even though I am originally from Texas where beef barbecue is king, I attended graduate school in South Carolina and developed a serious appreciation for pulled pork with mustard based sauce. This recipe contains a decent amount of mustard and vinegar for a REALLY tangy taste which is something I love. The ancho chile powder and tomato paste mellow out the mustard a bit which gives the sauce a unique flavor. Additionally, almost every barbecue sauce you find in the grocery store is full of high fructose corn syrup. Eating Paleo means eliminating sugar as much as possible so this recipe contains no sugar without sacrificing flavor. Another benefit is cost. The pork shoulder and pork butt are fairly inexpensive cuts of meat. I purchased the 9 pound pork shoulder I used for this recipe at $1.29 per pound. This Paleo barbecue recipe makes more than 12 servings which means it is seriously economical.
- 2 tablespoons ancho chile powder
- 2 tablespoons course sea salt
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon dry mustard
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 (7-9 pound) pork roast, either shoulder or butt
- 1/4 cup water
Cider-Vinegar Barbecue Sauce
- 1 1/2 cups apple cider vinegar
- 1 cup yellow mustard
- 6 ounce can tomato paste
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Liquid from the cooked pork
Mix the ancho chile powder, sea salt, paprika, onion powder, dry mustard and cayenne pepper in a small bowl.Rinse the pork and pat dry with a paper towel.Rub the entire pork with the spices. Place the seasoned pork shoulder in a large crockpot and add 1/4 cup water. Cook on high for six hours or on low for up to 9 hours.
While the pork is cooking prepare the barbecue sauce. Combine the vinegar, mustard, tomato paste, garlic, salt, cayenne and black pepper in a saucepan. Heat at medium, and simmer and stir for about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside.
When the pork is done drain the liquid into a large bottomed pan, skim off some of the fat and simmer until reduced by about half. Pour the reduced liquid into the pan with the barbecue sauce and cook for about 5 minutes.Once the pork has cooled off a bit you should remove any bones and as much of the large pieces of fat as reasonably possible. Using two forks, “pull” the pork until it is nicely shredded but not destroyed into mush.
Pour half of the prepared barbecue sauce over the pork and stir until well coated. Serve the pulled pork with a side of the remaining sauce. I also recommend serving the pork with some sort of coleslaw. When my garden is in full swing I shred cabbage, carrots, onions and raw beets and toss with an oil and vinegar dressing. (Recipe to follow) Whatever you do, remember this is the Paleo Diet and therefore NO BUNS are allowed. Enjoy!
Unexpectedly back in my hometown of Tyler, Texas recently, I had the opportunity to do a little exploring. Spending time with my mother in the hospital meant missing out on her good home cooking. Given that I still needed to eat, and the hospital food left much to be desired, I set out on a quest to find some Paleo-friendly food in East Texas. I told my mom I was going out to find a barbecue place I visited almost 15 years ago. After I returned she asked if I had found the place. Rather than answer, I simply bent down so she could sniff my smokey hair. She immediately smiled and said, “Yes, you sure did!”
Pat Gee’s is not just a barbecue joint. It’s an experience.
A few miles east of Tyler, and a world away, you can find Pat Gee’s Barbecue deep in the Piney Woods. It’s not the sort of place you find via highway signs with directions. You have to KNOW it is there. A brother-in-law clued me in many years ago and I was eager to return to find out if Pat Gee’s would still live up to its reputation and my fond memory.
Pulling up to the small, wood-frame building I noted nothing much had changed in the years since I was there, not even the outhouse in the back. There was one big change though, Pat died in 1999. But his family carries on the more than 30 year barbecue tradition.
Inside the main room, near the front door, is a fridge where you can grab your own “cold drink”.
Fly swatters hang from the counter.
The windows are screens to let the barbecue smoke out and the fresh air in.
The fans help.
The menu posted on the wall announced my choices. My mind was on RIBS having missed out on them at “Stanley’s Famous Pit BBQ” the day before. (Stanley’s sold out of ribs by 1 p.m. – that’s how good they are!) My Paleo self would say no to the beans and potato salad. No worries though. I was at Pat Gee’s for the meat and the experience.
The interior is utilitarian with screens for windows. But there’s plenty of room at the large tables for some good conversation. In fact, I chatted with the proprietess, Ms. Vera, for most of my visit. Her mother had been a patient at the same rehabilitation hospital where my mother was staying. She was extremely sweet and encouraging about the prospect of my mom’s complete recovery.
The pound of pork ribs was doused in sauce, served simply and eaten with gusto by a Texas native who lives in New Jersey (me!). My objective was achieved. I found some good BBQ at the best PLACE to eat barbecue I can imagine. And my Paleo Spirit was revived not only by the meat but by the good company. Ms. Vera told me, “I’m just really enjoying you”. Well, the sentiment was very mutual.
Pat Gee’s is located at 17547 Jamestown Rd. in Tyler. They are open Fri-Sun 11 a.m.-until the meat runs out.