Friday, 7 September 2012

Slow Cooked Cochinita Pibil

Alright, it's confession time: I'm a working girl, complete with shoulder pads, massive hair and the desire to make sweet love to Harrison Ford. I'm out of the house all day, so I've come to rely pretty heavily on my slow cooker. You can make some pretty great taco fillings this way - like Cochinita Pibil. Traditionally this pork dish is made by wrapping the meat in a banana leaf and baking it, but this is a pretty delicious alternative. So give it a shot or go watch Working Girl. Those are your options.

Photo creds to Katie Tower

Slow Cooked Cochinita Pibil Recipe

Serves: 25 tacos                Prep time: 10 min               Cook time: 6.5 hours

2 1/2-3 pounds pork shoulder, bone-in
1 1/2 cups orange juice
3/4 cup of white vinegar
6 cloves of garlic
1 pack achiote paste 
1/4 cup guajillo chile powder (or chipotle chili powder)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
kosher salt and pepper to taste

1 lime
1/2 red onion
2 large habanero peppers
1 tablespoon of orange juice

Prep the Pork
Heat the vegetable oil in a skillet. Trim any big pieces of fat off the pork, but leave the rest for flavour. Rub the pork shoulder with salt and pepper. Brown the pork shoulder in the skillet (about 4 minutes each side). Place in the slow cooker.  

Make it Saucy
Chop the garlic into nice puree-able pieces. Place the garlic, chile powder, achiote paste, white vinegar and orange juice into a blender. Puree until smooth. Pour the sauce over the pork shoulder in the slow cooker until the sauce leaves only the top of the pork visible. Cook on high for 6 hours. Drain excess sauce (leaving about 1 inch of liquid), remove the bone and shred the pork with forks. Cook on high again for about 30 minutes. 

Top It
Thinly slice the red onion and habanero peppers. Toss with orange juice and add salt to taste. Now you've got a salsa going. If habaneros are too spicy for you, replace with jalepenos or cilantro.

Eat It
Pile about 3 tablespoons of the meat into a warm corn tortilla. Serve with your salsa and a lime wedge. 

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