I made this for dinner last night on a suggestion, and it was greeted by rave reviews, and requests for third and fourth helpings. When you don’t have college students at your table, you can feed six to eight people on a good sized pork shoulder roast. The trick to getting a good, deep flavor without smoking the roast for days on end is rubbing it well with seasoning, and then searing the outside of the roast before you add liquid to your dutch oven. Searing gives a layer of that caramelized meat texture that I associate with great barbecue. Beyond that, just let the roast do its thing in the oven. Don’t do a lot of poking and prodding during the initial cooking time. You’ll know when it’s done- it falls apart just looking at it.
Sweet and tender, while this isn't a true "smoked" pork roast, this recipe still packs flavor into every bite.
Trim excessive fat from shoulder roast.
Salt and pepper pork shoulder roast to taste.
Combine brown sugar, cumin and chili powder. Rub into all sides of pork shoulder roast.
In a 5 quart (or larger) dutch oven, heat vegetable oil over medium heat.
Sear all sides of the pork roast in hot oil.
Add chopped onions around pork roast, let cook a minute
Pour in apple cider and liquid smoke, bring contents of pan to a simmer.
Put the lid on the dutch oven, and place in preheated oven for 3 hours.
With a fork, test your pork roast. The bone may come out at this point, which is fine. If it's not falling-apart tender, return it to the oven in 1/2 hour increments.
Remove bone from meat, shred the pork into the remaining liquid using 2 forks. Serve with barbecue sauce on the side.