National Pulled Pork Day is October 12th and we’ve got a variety of pulled pork recipes. But today we’d like to suggest something different: Korean-style pulled pork lettuce cups.
The Korean-influenced recipe saves both the calories and carbs of the sugar in Southern-style pulled pork.
Not to mention, it saves the calories and carbs in the rolls upon which Southern pulled pork is served.
This Korean-fusion variation also is spicy due to gochujang, the Korean red chile paste (photo #3—here’s more about it).
The cooked meat is shredded with two forks, which is the same as pulled pork. (The term “pulled” refers to pulling the cooked meat into shreds with forks.)
In addition to gochujang, you’ll need rice vinegar. Both have numerous other uses in your pantry.
> The different cuts of pork.
Thanks to Nakano, an eighth-generation brewer of fine rice vinegar, for this recipe. It specifically uses Nakano Toasted Sesame Rice Vinegar, but if you already own natural rice vinegar, you can substitute it.
You can substitute white wine vinegar, but we encourage you to use rice vinegar. You’ll find many more uses for it.
We added a garnish of spicy mayonnaise, mixing gochujang paste with regular mayonnaise (to taste). We brought it to the table for optional drizzling over the lettuce wraps.
Prep time is 15 minutes plus marinating (1 hour or overnight). Cook time is 1 hour in a pressure cooker.
1. SEASON the pork with salt and pepper. Toss it in a large bowl with half of the gochujang. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour or overnight.
2. ADD the marinated pork to an electric pressure cooker. Whisk the remaining gochujang, vinegar, soy sauce, garlic, ginger, and sesame oil in a bowl.
3. POUR the mixture over the meat. Cook on high pressure for 60 minutes, then manually release the remaining pressure. While the pork is cooking…
4. MARINATE the cucumbers and carrots in rice vinegar. You can let them marinate as long as you like (even overnight). When the pork is finished cooking…
5. CAREFULLY UNLOCK the lid of the pressure cooker. Remove the pork from the cooking liquid; shred it into small chunks.
6. SERVE it DIY-style with the lettuce leaves, cucumber, carrots, kimchi, and optional garnishes. Or prepare the lettuce cups in the kitchen and serve them filled.
*There are two types of lettuce in the butterhead category, Boston and Bibb. Both are small, loosely formed heads of soft, supple leaves. Boston is a larger and fluffier head than Bibb; Bibb is the size of a fist, and sweeter than Boston. Both are excellent for lettuce cups. The downside: They’re highly perishable. The different types of lettuce.