Passion for Pork

Chef Liana’s Pulled Pork Loin Johnny Cakes

Sharman - Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Last month the Alberta Canola Producers Commission held the 2 annual Taking It To Heart at the Edmonton Petroleum Club. Hosted by the hilarious Mairlyn Smith, the event featured six female chefs creating heart-healthy dishes in support of the Heart & Stroke Foundation.

The lovely Liana Robberecht, Executive Chef of the Calgary Petroleum Club, travelled up to Edmonton with Maria Besuijen, senior chef team member, to join in the festivities. Together they served up a health-conscious BBQ pulled pork on a Johnny Cake and topped with coleslaw.

Guests of the event lapped up the dish (and I was lucky enough to sneak a take-away container for the next day). These ladies sure know how to make a lip-smacking serving of succulent pork – a huge thanks to Chef Liana and Chef Maria for sharing this delicious recipe.

Pulled Pork
Since it was taking it to heart Chef Liana used a lean cut of pork loin instead of the shoulder.

pork loin
Equal parts salt/pepper/thyme/rosemary

  1. Mix the dry ingredients together and apply dry rub onto the pork loin.  In dutch oven or roasting pan, roast at low temperature until internal temperature reaches 110 F.
  2. Cool, then slice. In pot or dutch oven, add the bbq sauce and meat and slowly heat up until ready to serve on a Johnny Cake and top with coleslaw.

Johnny Cake

90g pastry flour
90g bread flour
2 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons sugar
370g cups yellow cornmeal
4 eggs, well beaten
120ml cup white vinegar
480 ml cup buttermilk
1/2 cup canola oil
1 lemon zested


  1. Sift flour with baking soda, salt, and sugar. Stir in cornmeal. Combine eggs, vinegar, milk, and shortening. Add to dry ingredients and stir just until dry ingredients are moist.
  2.  fold in sautéed shallots, small diced red onions, chives, zest of 1 lemon
  3. pour into Silicone mini half round mold
  4. let sit for 15-20 minutes before placing in oven
  5. Bake at 400° for 15- 20 minutes.

BBQ Sauce:

1 large onion, very finely diced
500ml/2 cup/tomato sauce
4 tbsp tomato puree/tomato paste
1 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 tbsp paprika
4 tbsp honey
3 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
A pinch of sea salt /black pepper
1 tsp red chilli flakes
¼ c apple juice
1/2 cup apple concentrate
1/4 tsp liquid smoke
1 cup molasses
1/4 cup instant coffee

  1. Add a little oil to a pan and add the onion and cook on low for 5 minutes until softened.
  2.  Add the rest of the ingredients to the pan and simmer for 3 minutes
  3. blend in food processor


4 cups shredded cabbage
2 tablespoons grated white onions
1 cup carrot (shredded or grated)
4 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
¼ cup Greek plain yogurt
¼ cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon fine white pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 red pepper julienne
¼ cup chopped fine green onions
1 tbsp roasted garlic puree
¼ cup chopped tarragon
juice of one lemon
2 cored Gala apples, julienne
celery seeds – to taste, approx 1 tsp
¼ tsp Tabasco


  1. Prepare the vegetables by slicing, shredding or grating very thin.
  2. Toss the vegetable ingredients to mix well.
  3. Prepare the dressing by whisking together the vinegar, mayonnaise honey salt and pepper.
  4. Fold the dressing into the tossed vegetables and refrigerate, covered, for at least 2 hours.


Chef Liana and Sharman