Crock Pot Pulled Pork Sandwiches

We just spent a week in New England, freezing our butts off, visiting my family. What stinks is we both, & my entire family, ended up getting the flu. We tried to hide from it but no matter what, it came for us, knocked us on our asses & in bed for four days. We didn’t get to do too much with the 30 degree temperatures but it was great to go home, visit with everyone & catch up.

I got to meet two of my cousin’s new babies & one of my very best friends ask me to be a part of her wedding party. All & all it was a pretty successful trip.

One of my favorite parts of coming home, besides catching up with family & friends, is being able to eat at all of my favorite local restaurants that we don’t have in Orange County. (Check out my Instagram for posts from last week’s trip… & what we are eating @MeggOliver) There is my favorite burger joint, amazing Italian dinners, fabulous brunch places & of coarse… some Connecticut pizza.

The food in Connecticut is much different than California. During the summer we are very seafood driven along the Long Island Sound. Local clams, shrimp, and even lobster can be found in any restaurant you go to. Many seafood shacks even close up for the winter before they have to resort to using frozen fish. During the winter in Connecticut most people get back to warm comfort food.

We started our trip with a topping covered pizza, was able to try out a new brewery… which was amazing… headed for Mexican & drinks to celebrate a friend’s birthday & enjoyed a beautiful brunch with friends.

When we got back from Connecticut I went straight to work for seven days straight, & with nothing in the house it was pretty rough eating take out & mall food court food for the first few days. But now we are back into the swing of things, recovered from our sickness & I am back to cooking. One easy recipe I have made a lot this fall & winter so far has been these pulled pork sandwiches. They are super easy & well yum.

My favorite part of them is not actually the meat at all. Instead I am dying over the massive amount of coleslaw I make to top the sandwich. And good news for me… Chris hates cabbage. So I make this coleslaw & literally put it on everything for a week. I top it on salads, sandwiches, as a side…anything! I love it. Try it out & let me know which you like more… the pulled pork or the coleslaw. Beware… this is a small batch recipe. The pulled pork only makes 3-4 sandwiches. But the coleslaw can go on for days.


Pulled Pork:
1-1.5 lb. boneless pork loin
2 garlic cloves
2 tsp garlic powder
½ tsp paprika
¼ tsp dry mustard
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
½ cup BBQ sauce
1 tsp chili powder
1 Tbsp. honey

Cole Slaw:
½ head of purple cabbage
½ cup mayo
1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 Tbsp. apple cider vinegar
½ tsp pepper
1 carrot, shredded

1. Mix all of the coleslaw ingredients in a bowl. Toss with tongs and refrigerate. Allow to sit for until the pork is done and all of the flavors have mixed together.
2. Place the pork at the bottom of a crock pot. Top with all of the seasonings. Cook on high 4-5 hours.
3. After 4-4.5 hours shred pork inside crock using two forks. Cover and allow to cook on low for another 30 minutes.
4. Assemble sandwich by adding coleslaw on top of the meat on a sandwich bun.


Mashed Celery Root

So here is a little secret. I have a love affair with Portland, OR. I don’t know why. Truth is, I’ve only been there twice, but if you were to say there was a job available up there for both Chris and I next week, I’d drop everything and start packing.

There is something about the perfect combination of city, suburbia and rural that I love. It’s not as busy as Los Angeles or Orange County, but not too suburban and cookie cutter like my hometown in Connecticut. And if you drive 20 minutes in any direction, you are in the mountains, at the river, in the middle of a farm, or on a vineyard. Literally amazing.

Last month we road tripped up to Portland for the second time. We woke up at 4 in the morning, were on the road by 5, stopped fort our first coffee at 5:15 and were in Portland by 10 at night. We spent 5 amazing days and packed everything we could in. My sleep hasn’t been the same since. We ate, we drank, we hiked, & we toured the city like we lived there. All of my favorite things. (Okay, maybe not so much the hiking. That really kicked my ass.)

The first time we went up to Oregon we were going for Chris’s cousin’s wedding, but ended up making a trip out of it. We spent a lot of time with family and the rest of the wedding party and at the end of the trip ventured off on our own to get to know the city.


The wedding was gorgeous. Set up high on a mountain, overlooking amazing grape vines with Mt. Hood off in the distance. It was beautiful. Me, of course, I remember the food. Chris and I both had a delicious, creamy celery root mash as our side and both fell in love. It was the same consistency of a mashed potato if it was pureed… a lot, but it was light like a cauliflower puree. For the past three years we kept saying we need to try to recreate that & of course, never did it. I mean where to do you find celery root!!?

Until I asked the produce guy at our local supermarket. There it was, just two in the entire store… but they were there, hidden with the other root veggies. Who would have thought?! So I bought them and began experimenting. I like a little texture in my sides so I left this a little more mashed then the celery root that we had at the wedding but it’s simple, quick and tasty. Try it out, enjoy!



1 large celery root
½ cup milk
2 Tbsp butter, salted
Salt and pepper
1. Chop off the stem of the celery root. Now flip root upside down so it is sitting flat on the cut side. Carefully peel the outside of the root off of the middle and discard.
2. Dice into 1 inch squares.
3. Place celery root in pot and fill with water about 2 inches above the root. Salt water and bring to boil. Boil for 20-30 minutes or until root is tender, like you would with a potato.
4. Drain root and return to hot pot.
5. Combine all ingredients and mash with a potato masher. For a smoother finish use a electronic mixer.


Mushroom and Brussel Sprout Sauté

2 Tbsp olive oil
2 cups brussel sprouts, halved
1 cup mushrooms, halved
½ onion, sliced
¼ cup balsamic vinegar

1. Cut brussel sprouts and mushrooms in half. Marinate brussel sprouts in balsamic vinegar for half hour.
2. Heat oiled sauté pan on medium high.
3. Add in onions, garlic and brusel sprouts. Cook until sprouts are tender.
4. Add mushrooms and cover for 5-8 minutes.