February 22, 2008

Pork Carnitas

Pork Carnitas
from Kitchen & Cook, July/August 2006

3 lbs pork shoulder, skin and bone removed
1 1/2 tsp salt
2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
2 cloves garlic, roughly chopped
1 medium white onion, medium dice
2 tsp ancho chile powder

Cut the meat, with the fat, into 1-in cubes. Barely cover the meat with water in a heavy, wide pan. Add the salt, cumin, and half the cilantro; bring to a boil, uncovered. Lower to a simmer and cook undisturbed, until all the water has evaporated and meat is tender, but not falling apart, about 1 hour.

Lower heat and cook to render the fat, adding a few drops of oil, if necessary to get it started, keeping the fattiest parts of the meat near the bottom of the pot. Keep turning the meat until it is lightly browned all over, about 10 minutes. Some will stick to the bottom. Stir in the onions garlic, and chile powder, trying not to break up the meat too much.

Deglaze with 1/4 cup cold water. Cook for a few minutes more, stirring occasionally and scraping up any browned bits.

Can be made 5 days in advance.

Notes: I took the advice of this much-lamented newsletter of the Culinary Institute of America (I curse the day they discontinued my subscription) and used this as a filling with grilled tortillas (right on the stove burner) with tomatoes and cheese and fresh cilantro. OMG - good.

Posted by Jennifer at February 22, 2008 7:14 PM | TrackBack

Yum! The pork was tender and flavorful, with just a hint of heat, and it worked really well as part of the filling for what were effectively soft tacos. This is a definite winner.

Posted by: Michael at February 25, 2008 7:56 PM
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