pulled pork pita

ONE of my favourite fictional characters is Bonnie Grape from What’s Eating Gilbert Grape. I have never watched the movie; just read the book and truth be told I had to google her name. All I remember of Bonnie is she is the obese, depressed, ultimate couch potato mother in the book. As she vegged in front of the tv and got heavier and heavier, her son had to figure out how to prop up the floor board so it wouldn’t collapse. And my apologies for the spoiler, but her kids burnt down the house when she died so she didn’t have to suffer the humiliation of being gawked at when she is removed from the house. That’s what I call filial piety.

I sometimes think – ok, maybe more often than sometimes – that I wouldn’t mind being Bonnie. I’ll eat as much as I want and pack on the pounds, watch tv all day and night and munch on chips, and ignore the rest of the world in all its frenzy of sound and fury.

Some weekends are Bonnie weekends when nothing gets done and nothing happens. But by Monday morning, I’d be a little panicky at going down that slippery slope. These days, I try to not let Bonnie Grape take over – I resist the impulse to say No to invites, I go shopping, I take my daughter hiking so we wouldn’t end up sluggish. Some people are natural doers and go-getters; I have to work at being active.

pulled pork

I still balk at over-achieving on household chores; so a spick and span home is still a slow work in progress. I cleared out big bags of clothes, but still haven’t managed to haul them down some recycling bins. There is also an old vacuum cleaner, a printer and a couple of old suitcases to throw away. I have boxes of toys to hand to a friend who is a play therapist, and boxes of stuff from our last move. I have a room I have been meaning to turn into a home office or a sewing room, depending on what I fancy at that moment. I have lists of files and ambitions of reorganising my paperwork. I have photo albums to sort on my laptop and my hard drive, and photos to print and frame.

But I like cooking and food. So my favourite way of convincing myself I am not sliding into inertia is to try out new recipes. I try to plan ahead for the week, and prepare our packed lunches for the week. I am also trying to not waste food.

pulled pork pita2

While mucking around on Pinterest (definitely Bonnie Grape rabbit hole) I stumbled on the recipe for pulled pork and was intrigued by the recipe to defrost my huge slab of pork immediately. I had meant to make roast pork or belly pork in soya sauce, but the Asian-inspired pulled pork recipe by one of my favourite bloggers Diane Chu of White on Rice Couple was calling to me. And so I made the pulled pork even though it calls for four hours in the oven and I got a little impatient waiting. I am glad I waited through for the reward is rich, deeply-flavoured tender pulled pork that we ate with pasta and in wraps that entire week. I like this recipe so much I have made it a second time.

pulled pork chunk

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