Vegan pulled “pork” BBQ sandwiches
A few weeks ago I saw a recipe that uses Jackfruit to create an amazing vegan representation of pulled pork BBQ. Intrigued, I did some research, and found quite a few different recipes for Jackfruit-based BBQ sandwiches. The texture of Jackfruit, when prepared a certain way, is amazingly close to pulled pork.
Last night Lisa and I decided to cook together, and try out these amazing looking sandwiches!
Lisa tackled the homemade potato chips (potatoes, salt, pepper and a little cooking spray), which came out great! She also made a wonderful vegetarian (not vegan) coleslaw with cabbage, carrots, Greek yogurt, apple cider vinegar, honey, Dijon mustard, olive oil, salt and pepper.
I took pictures as I went through the somewhat lengthy process of preparing the Jackfruit BBQ, so here’s a photo tour along with the recipe.
First, here is the canned Jackfruit. Lisa found it at a local Asian market for about a $1.70 per can. It’s important to get the Jackfruit in water or brine, not syrup:
I drained and rinsed the Jackfruit, then soaked it in water for about 30 minutes (in the refrigerator):
Next, I cut the Jackfruit into smaller triangles, and sauteed it for about 10 minutes in a couple lugs of olive oil along with an onion and about 6 cloves of minced garlic:
While I had the veggies and Jackfruit cooking, I prepared the liquid cooking base by combining 1-2/3 cups of vegetable stock, 2 tablespoons molasses, 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, 1 teaspoon vegan Worcestershire sauce, 1 teaspoon liquid smoke, 1 teaspoon thyme, 1/2 teaspoon mustard powder, 1/2 teaspoon chili powder and lots of fresh ground pepper.
I added the liquid mixture to the veggies and Jackfruit, lowered the heat to a simmer and covered the pan. I cooked this down for a little over an hour, stirring every 10-15 minutes. I also used my stirring spoon to break apart the Jackfruit.
Here’s how everything looked once the liquid had been cooked away:
Next, I put the Jackfruit onto a lightly greased baking sheet (I used cooking spray), and added some vegan BBQ sauce. I mixed that all together, spread the Jackfruit out into a thin layer, and cooked it in a 400° oven for 20 minutes. Here’s how it looked just before putting everything into the oven:
After about 20 minutes, I removed the baking sheet and was astonished by how much this vegan dish looked like pulled pork! Here’s a close-up:
I toasted some buns, put down a layer of Lisa’s delicious slaw, piled the Jackfruit BBQ high and added some extra BBQ sauce. Does this look amazing, or what?!
Lisa and I both really liked it at first, but the more we ate the less we enjoyed it. I know, I know… we were so disappointed! I think it’s something about the taste of the Jackfruit. I just don’t care for it, and neither does Lisa. In fact, by the time I finished mine (Lisa didn’t even finish hers), I was wishing I’d pushed my plate away 5 minutes earlier.
There have been so many positive reviews of the various Jackfruit BBQ recipes I’ve seen that I’m very surprised I didn’t enjoy it more. Oh well, you never know if you don’t try. Again, lots of people love this, and maybe you will too. Give it a try and let me know what you think.