I grew up in upstate New York, so even though we are not getting cooler, here in Arizona, my mind wants to believe that fall is here. Growing up, September always meant fresh crisp mornings and caramel-hued evenings. It’s still over 105 degrees here in Arizona, but if I turn my air conditioning down to 78 degrees, close my eyes, and make something with apple or pumpkin in it, I might actually trick myself into believing it is Autumn. This dish has the sweet tangy taste of apple cider in it, for the perfect “fall” dinner.
This pork is fall-off-the-bone delish. The apple cider BBQ sauce is different from your “typical” smoky BBQ sauce–this is tangy and sweet, with just the right bite. Remember…it is not lady-like to drink the BBQ sauce from the dish, so use discretion please!
- 4-5 Lean Boneless Pork Loin Chops
- 1 Small sweet onion, peeled and thinly sliced
- 2 Cloves Garlic, Peeled and thinly sliced
- 2 c. Apple Cider (or juice)
- 2 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
- 1 Pod, Knorr Homestyle Beef Stock or 1/2 c. Canned Beef Stock
Turn the crock pot to high. Wash and dry the pork chops and place in the bottom of the crock pot. Add the onion, garlic, apple cider, and balsamic vinegar and toss to mix. Throw the Knorr pod in, and as it melts into the liquid, toss once or twice more.
Cook the pork for about six hours, stirring occasionally. The liquid around the chops should simmer briskly, but if it starts to dry up, add another 1/2 c. of apple cider. When the pork falls apart when touched with a fork, it is done. Drain the liquid and shred the pork with a fork. Set aside.
Apple Cider BBQ Sauce
- 2 Tbsp. Butter
- 1/2 of a Small Sweet Onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 1 Clove Garlic, Peeled and finely chopped
- 1 (6 oz) Can of Tomato Paste
- 2 c. Apple Cider
- 2 Tbsp. Balsamic Vinegar
- 2 Tbsp. Dijon Mustard
- 2 c. Brown Sugar
Place the butter in a medium sauce pan and heat on medium. Add the onion and garlic and saute for 3-4 minutes, until opaque. Add the tomato paste, apple cider, balsamic vinegar, dijon mustard, and brown sugar and blend.
Turn the heat up to medium high and cook until it boils, stirring frequently, so it does not burn. Cook 2-3 minutes more, then lower to medium low and simmer for about 18-20 minutes. You can add the pork and simmer for a minute or two, then serve, or serve the pork separate, and pour the BBQ sauce on each sandwich.
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