We are hosting a going away party for grandson Cameron tomorrow and we decided to go with a luau theme. Michael lived much of his life in Hawaii and is quite fond of the cuisine. I will be making huli huli chicken, char sui barbecue chicken, Kalua pork, ono macaroni salad and steamed rice. I like this menu because most of the prep can be done ahead of time. I took a little time today to get the chicken marinating and the pork shoulders ready to cook. I will be cooking the pork low and slow in the oven tomorrow and finishing it in the smoker.
I have two boneless pork shoulders weighing almost 7 pounds total. I added two teaspoons of hickory flavor liquid smoke to 1/4 cup apple juice and injected it into the pork shoulders.
I ordered two banana leaves online to wrap the pork. They are huge, about five feet long! I cut along both sides of the spine to remove it so they would be more pliable. I washed them thoroughly with warm water.
I laid out the pieces of one banana leaf, overlapping in the middle. I placed the pork on top and rubbed it with sea salt. I didn’t have any Hawaiian salt or I would have used that.
I wrapped the pork shoulders in banana leaves and tied them with kitchen twine.
I made sure they would fit side by side in a foil roasting pan. I am trying to keep clean-up to a minimum so I can enjoy the party too!
I then wrapped them separately in heavy duty foil. Tomorrow I will pour 3 cups of water in the pan and cover tightly with foil. I plan to cook them for four hours at 300 degrees then finish them for an hour in the smoker on low. I am hoping the smoker will contribute to the authentic smoked flavor. I contemplated just cooking them in the smoke all the way but decided this is not the time to experiment. I’ll be back tomorrow with an update. Wish me luck! Aloha.
Update: The party was a success and the food delicious. I had planned to photograph the kalua pork after it was shred but it got late, guests were hungry so the blogger in me had to give in the the hostess in me. I took a quick pic before I unwrapped it from the banana leaves before shredding and serving it.