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Cooking with JoJo: Busy? Try some sweet potatoes stuffed with pork

Joey Morasse • Jul 18, 2017 at 4:47 PM

It’s been a long day, and you’re tired and hungry. The last thing you want to do is cook, and eating out can be expensive. 

If you’re like me when you’re hungry, you hardly ever make good choices. I have rarely found myself craving a salad at the end of the day when I am hungry. Yes, sometimes they are good, but it’s just not filling. 

Not only is this tasty, but it is better for you than that burger and fries you almost wrecked pulling in for on a whim. Whether you have a Crockpot, a soup pot or cook this in the oven, this is an easy, hands-off slow cooker recipe that will tickle your taste buds. 

Don’t worry. You can leave the oven on low all day or a soup pot on low while you’re gone. Just make sure you leave room for the juices to fill without going over.

The name will likely get a chuckle out of the children and children at heart, but the Boston butt is not at all as the name would imply. It comes from the shoulder of the pig. It is the cut to use for barbecue, stews and recipes like the following.

What you’ll need: 

• Boston butt or pork shoulder, about 4 pounds. Bone in is fine, just fish it out at the end. Your dog will love you.

 ¼ cup chili powder.

• ¼ cumin.

• 2 tbsp. coarse black pepper.

• 3 tbsp. coarse salt. If you don’t have coarse, regular is fine, just reduce to 2 tbsp.

• 8 ounces of salsa. Green tomatillo salsa is great for this recipe. Herdez, found at Kroger, is great. You will use half a bottle for the cooking process. Add more if you like at the end if you want more of that delicious flavor.

• two small cans of chopped green chilies.

• one whole, rough-chopped Vidalia onion.

• 16 ounces of tomato sauce.

• sweet potatoes.

Before you begin your day:

In your choice of cooking vessel, put the whole pork butt in. When I cook in a pot on the stove, I will put a little of the chili powder on the meat and sear it all around on high heat to get a good crust. Regardless of this step, turn your heat down to low. With the meat in the pot, add all ingredients in along with 6-8 ounces of water to prevent any scorching. Stir ingredients around to distribute. This will cook all day and will be fall-apart tender. Always, with any recipe from anyone, taste. If it needs more of anything, add it. I always find myself adding to get the bold flavors I like, and it is how you grow as a chef. 

As you drag yourself in the door, the smell will wake up you and your appetite. Pop your sweet potatoes in a microwave until tender. Split them open and fill them with the delicious pork that you’ve been thinking about all day. Top with more green tomatillo salsa or a red tomato-based salsa. As with most foods, the leftovers are even better. Enjoy.

Cooking since he could pull a chair up to the stove at 5 years old, Joey Morasse, of Lebanon, is the owner and operator of JoJo’s Barbecue and Catering. He is also a personal chef and offers in-home cooking classes.

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