Oink Pork Carnitas

Mexican Carnitas

Slow-cooked pork is widely used in Mexico. Make sure you use a cut suitable for long, moist cooking, like shoulder or neck, or it could result in a slightly dry, stringy end product.
Recipe info
Slow-cooked pork is widely used in Mexico. Make sure you use a cut suitable for long, moist cooking, like shoulder or neck, or it could result in a slightly dry, stringy end product.
Ingredients
  • 1,5 kg pork shoulder (skin removed), cut into large chunks
  • Salt and pepper
  • Olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) smoked paprika
  • 2 teaspoons (10ml) smoked chipotle chilli flakes
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) ground cumin
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 2 heaped tablespoons (35-40ml) cocoa powder
  • Pinch or two of sugar (to balance the flavours)
  • 2 cans (400g each) chopped tomatoes
  • 2 cans (400g each) kidney beans,
  • crushed PICKLED RED ONIONS
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • Juice of 2 limes
  • 1 tablespoon (15ml) castor sugar
  • Large pinch of salt

 

FOR SERVING

  • 12-16 corn tortillas, heated
  • Shredded red cabbage or lettuce
  • Sour cream
  • Tomato-and-coriander salsa
  • Guacamole
method

SERVES 4-6 PREP TIME 30 MINS COOK TIME 3¾ HRS SKILL LEVEL EASY TRY MIDDLE EASTERN

  • Preheat oven to 150˚C.
  • Season the pork all over with salt and pepper. Heat a splash of oil in an ovenproof casserole dish and brown the meat all over. Remove and set aside.
  • Sauté the onion in the casserole dish until soft, add garlic and fry for another minute.
  • Toss in all the spices and cocoa and fry until fragrant, about a minute.
  • Return the meat to the casserole dish and tip in the tomatoes and sugar, along with 2 cups of water.
  • Season.
  • Cover and braise in the oven for 3½ hours, checking occasionally to see that it is not too dry. Add more water if necessary.
  • In the meantime, mix the onions with lime juice, sugar, and salt.
  • Cover and leave to pickle while the meat cooks.
  • Once the meat is fork tender, remove from the oven and take the meat out of the casserole dish.
  • Stir the beans through the cooking sauce and allow to heat up while you shred the meat. Using two large forks, tease the meat apart into large shreds and mix with the sauce until well coated.
  • Drain the pickled onions and place in a small bowl.
  • Serve all the accompaniments on a platter alongside the meat and let everyone build their own tacos.

 

WHY NOT…

… serve the meat on a pile of cheesy nachos with all the trimmings.

… make enchiladas by rolling the meaty sauce in tortillas and

topping with plenty of cheese before baking until bubbly.

… whip up a quick guacamole by mashing some avocado with lime

juice, chopped coriander, diced jalapeño and diced tomatoes

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