Recipe from The Joy of Cooking.

For Rub:
1/4 cup cumin seeds
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 cup0 sweet or hot paprika
1/4 cup chili powder
1 teaspoon ground mace
1/4 cup salt
1/4 cup cracked black peppercorns

For Pork:
1 boneless Boston butt or pork shoulder blade roast (about 4 pounds)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3/4 cup white vinegar
3/4 cup cider vinegar
1 tablespoon hot red pepper sauce or more to taste
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons crushed red pepper flakes
salt and cracked black peppercorns to taste
12 hamburger buns


For Rub:
Spread cumin seeds in a small dry skillet over medium heat and toast, shaking the pan often to prevent burning, until fragrant (2 to 3 minutes). Remove from heat and cool to room temperature, and grind to a fine powder in a spice grinder, coffee grinder, blender, or with a mortar and pestle. Transfer to a small bowl and add the remaining rub ingredients (brown sugar through peppercorns). Stir together well. Any remaining rub can be kept covered for up to 6 weeks in a cool, dark, dry place.

For the Pork:
Trim any excess fat from the pork. Rub the meat with the dry rub. The meat can be cooked at once or wrapped in two layers of aluminum foil and refrigerated for up to 24 hours. Position rack in center of oven . Preheat oven to 325 degrees.

Heat a heavy ovenproof pot large enough to hold the meat over medium heat. Add vegetable oil and heat. Add the meat and brown well on all sides. Cover pot tightly with foil or a lid, place in oven and bake until meat is tender enough to be shredded easily with a fork, 3 to 3 1/2 hours. Skim off the fat from the pan juices. Shred the meat into strings with a fork.

Combine pan juices, vinegars, hot pepper sauce, sugar, crushed red pepper flakes, and salt and pepper in a small bowl. Stir into shredded pork. If necessary, gently reheat pork over medium-low heat. Serve on hamburger buns.

Return to recipe index

Return to