carnitas.

Every tortilla dreams of being stuffed with carnitas.

Or at least they should.

Because who doesn’t want a perfectly seasoned pork that is slow cooked until it’s so tender, it falls apart as you lift it out to shred it, stuffed into them?

I know I do.

If you’re uncertain what carnitas are, it’s Mexico’s version of pulled pork. It’s literal translation is “little meats”. And if there’s two things that we love in this household it’s Mexican food. And pork.

Actually, we love all food.

And travel. We love to travel. But because we can’t travel, Audrey and I made the decision recently that we were going to choose a country each week on our corkboard map and cook food from that country. It’ll be our way of experiencing different countries around the world – but through our kitchen. Audrey will be in charge of pointing out the country and I’ll be in charge of finding a variety of different dishes that she can choose from. I’m super stoked about this new adventure – especially because I love trying new foods and learning about the origins.

But before we head all over the world, let’s go back to Mexico. And this scrumptious pulled pork.

The traditional way to cook carnitas is to cover the meat in lard, similar to the way you would prepare confit. Once the lard is melted, and the seasonings added, you would simmer the meat on a very low heat until it was very tender. And then crank the heat up so the outside of the pork begins to get crispy. Unfortunately, I’m not cooking pork in a massive amount of fat to create a tender, pull apart, piece of meat. Fortunately, I don’t have to. And I only need about 5 minutes of prep time. Thank you, slow cooker.

Also. Carnitas can be frozen without any loss of quality. So you can make a large batch and make tacos, quesadillas, or even served over a baked sweet potato with some avocado cream. And then freeze the rest to enjoy at a later date. Or just double the batch immediately, and you’ll have a future dinner all ready to go.


Carnitas

  • 2 lb boneless pork loin roast
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 4 tsp ancho chile powder
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp ground cayenne pepper
  • 12 fluid oz beer (or chicken stock)
  • 1/2 c. orange juice

Combine all the ingredients into your slow cooker. Cook on low for 8-10 hours. Once the meat is fall apart tender, remove it and shred it with two forks (do not discard the liquid).

Transfer the pulled pork to a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil. Ladle about 1 cup of the liquid over the pork to season, and broil for about 5-10 minutes or until the meat becomes golden brown and the edges are crispy.

See. So simple.

recipe and photos have been updated since original post in 2016.

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