Carnitas




At this point, I’m behind on posting around six recipes. Why? Because it’s Winter Break, and while I’m certainly enjoying cooking and baking more than I did the last couple of weeks of the Fall semester, I’m simply embracing the do-what-I-want-when-I-want for as long as I can. So I’ve been baking holiday cookies, giving them away to friends, cooking new things (including plenty of soups!), but I think tonight it’s time for me to post this incredibly easy and oh-so-succulent pork recipe. 


What I love most about this recipe is that all you need are a few ingredients. The secret is letting the pork cook on the stove for a long time. The result is meat that melts in your mouth and is perfect for tacos, on bread, or on its own. 


This dish will always hold a special place in my heart for two reasons: This is what I made the first time I ever attempted to make anything out of pernil (the cut of meat traditionally featured during Dominican holiday feasts), and it was the dish I was thinking of making on November 11, 2011. Life got the best of my lunch plans that day, though. All for the better. 


Carnitas
Adapted from Smitten Kitchen


Ingredients
3 lbs boneless pork shoulder, cut into 2-inch cubes
1/2 cup fresh squeezed orange juice (I used 3 oranges)
1/4 cup lime juice (2-3 limes)
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon salt


Directions
1. If you were feeling adventurous, as I was when I made this, you will have bought a bone-in pernil (pork shoulder), and you will have needed to hack away a pretty gnarly piece of fat from your meet before slice and cubing it. It was actually really fun to do this, but time consuming. Don’t get rid of all the fat (I don’t think that would be possible), as you will add none to the pot for cooking.
2. Place your meat in a large pot. 
3. Add orange and lime juice, plus the rest of your ingredients.
4. Add enough water to just cover your pork.
5. Bring to a boil, and then lower the heat to a simmer.
6. Simmer uncovered for two hours, and resist any urge to meddle with it. Just let it be.
7. Once two hours have elapsed, increase the heat to medium-high, turning the pieces occasionally. Keep cooking for 45 minutes until all the liquid has evaporated and the meat has a chance to sizzle. Once browned all around, you’re ready to eat!


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This entry was published on January 5, 2012 at 1:23 am. It’s filed under dinner and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

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