Tasty carnitas from a taco truck are special. So I figured out how to make them to share with you! Slow braising under reduced heat gives juicy and tender bites, while the final broiling gives a bit of searing. Serve on warm tortillas or cool Romaine lettuce (‘protein style’) with fresh toppings, and you have an irresistible dinner or party with friends (on Tuesday or any day)!
½ lb boneless pork shoulder (optionally pork butt) with any rind removed
1½ tsp kosher salt (a little less is ok, but salt is needed to balance against the salsa and tortilla)
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp fresh ground black pepper
¼ to ½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp five spice powder (Asian grocery if needed)
4 cloves garlic, whole and peeled
1 clove, whole
Peel from 1 orange (use a potato peeler)
4 oz orange juice
2 tbsp olive oil
Tortillas or Romaine lettuce
Optional toppings: chopped onions, chopped cilantro or parsley, salsa (use your favorite brand or make your own!), and shredded cheese (Cheddar, Monterrey Jack, etc.)
Aroma Doveware 2.5 L Dutch Oven
(or double the recipe for use with an Aroma Doveware Casserole)
15 min prep time, 3 hrs and 5 min in oven
Preheat oven to 275° F Cut pork into cubes (under 2 inches in size) and place in Dutch Oven. Add salt, cumin, pepper, cinnamon, five spice, garlic, clove, and orange peel. Toss and add juice and oil; toss again. Cover and place in oven for 3 hrs; test for ‘fork tender’.
When done, remove cubes and then strain (and keep!) liquid, discarding solids. Return cubes to Dutch Oven and drizzle about 2 tbsp skimmed oil from strained liquid on cubes. Return uncovered to oven (high broil) for about 5 min to sear until dark brown appears. Remove from oven and shred cubes while adding strained liquid to be absorbed. Serve as desired. Enjoy!
Over To You
What’s your version of carnitas? Share and inspire us.