Monday, February 3, 2014

Uncle Ryan's Carnitas

Uncle Ryan is the man. He made this for us over Thanksgiving and I was still craving it when I got home. This recipe could not be more simple and perfect for entertaining a crowd. Be careful though - my first attempt I way over salted the pork and was pissed. Second time I reduced the salt and it was juicy, crispy, fried swine perfection.

Just another recipe that proves that Uncle Ryan RULES!!!

Carnitas: Braised and Fried Pork
Recipe and picture slightly adapted from Roberto Santibanez for Epicurious

  • 4 pounds fatty pork shoulder, cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1.5 cups water
  • 1.5 cupes Mexican Coke (If you can't find, just use 3 cups water.)
  • 1 medium white onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 orange, cut into 2 pieces
  • 1/4 cup pork lard or vegetable oil
  • 8 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon sweetened condensed milk
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano, preferably Mexican, crumbled
  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • Put all the ingredients in a wide 6-to 7-quart heavy pot (don't worry if the pork is not completely covered) and bring the water to a boil, skimming the surface as necessary. Lower the heat and simmer vigorously, stirring occasionally, until the pork is fork-tender and the liquid has completely evaporated, 1½ to 2 hours. Discard the orange pieces and bay leaves. If the liquid hasn't evaporated after 2 hours, transfer the pork pieces to a bowl and let the liquid continue to bubble away, stirring often, until it has.
    Preheat the oven to 450°F. Transfer the pork and fat to an ovenproof dish, if necessary, and brown the pork, uncovered, in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes. There's no need to stir.
    Carnitas keeps in the refrigerator for up to three days.

    We enjoyed ours in some flour tortillas with roasted tomato salsa, radishes and pickled red onions. YUM!