Mom used to make some delicious Kalua Pork growing up. She would rub the pork with rock salt and add some liquid smoke and cook on low all day. The smell coming from the oven was divine!
When it was done, falling off the bone, she would shred it and drizzle with soy sauce. I would steal bites while she was doing this. Kalua Pork is one of those things that you could just stand in the kitchen and pick with your fingers. I’m sure she had to slap my little hands away to get it to the table.
Once it got to the table she would serve it with steamed rice and salad or coleslaw. Yum!
In this recipe, I used Hawaiian Alaea Salt along with the liquid smoke and wrapped the pork in Ti leaves before sealing it into a tight foil package.
The Ti leaves add a nice floral note to the pork. If you can’t find Ti leaves, banana leaves can be used. You can usually find them at your local Asian grocery.
What is Kalua Pork?
Kalua means to cook in a vessel in the ground. Like the Kalua pig that you would see at a traditional Hawaiian Luau. On the mainland, here, we roast it in the oven for several hours until it becomes fall apart tender and juicy.
Simple seasoning of Hawaiian Alaea Sea Salt and liquid smoke (mesquite) give it a distinct and amazingly delicious flavor.
Kalua Pork is traditionally served with bowls of rice, cooked cabbage and some fresh pineapple. I like to add a side of macaroni or potato salad too.
Here’s how it’s made
Lay out foil on counter. wash Ti leaves and pat dry. Cut out the hard stem and and discard then
lay leaves out on top of foil.
Rinse pork and pat dry. cut little slits in pork with knife. Rub pork with the salt all over and into the slits. Rub liquid smoke into pork. Place on top of Ti leaves fat side up. Wrap Ti leaves around pork. Hold leaves into place and wrap tightly with the foil.
Place in a roasting pan with the 1 cup water. Place in a 350 degree oven and cook for about 5 hours. Remove from oven and let stand for about 15 minutes. Open package and remove pork to a large platter. Shred pork with 2 forks. Pour juices from inside foil over pork for extra flavor and juiciness. Then drizzle with a bit of soy sauce. Yum!
Serve this yummy Kalua Pork with:
- Hawaiian Style Macaroni Salad
- Fresh Pineapple Slaw
- Sugar Snap Pea Salad With Orange Soy Vinaigrette and Toasted Almonds
- Asian Cucumber Salad
Wine and Drink pairings:
- Sauvignon Blanc ( New Zealand)
- Sparkling wine
- Pinot Noir
- Pina Colada
- Mai Tai
- 3 pound Pork shoulder blade roast bone-in about 3 lbs
- 1 1/2 tablespoons Hawaiian Alaea salt
- 1/2 tablespoon liquid smoke
- 3 Ti leaves or banana leaves (optional)
- 1 cup water
- Soy sauce