Carnitas, the most succulent braised pork shoulder ever

Recipe in “Vanilla” theme

Carnitas, succulent porc shoulder braised in orange juice

Carnitas, succulent porc shoulder braised in orange juice
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Category: main dish, meat
Cuisine: mexican

An amazing meat dish to impress even the most discerning meat eaters. Bursting with flavours from the garlic and oranges, crispy brown on the outside but oh so tender on the inside….Works absolutely great as a taco filling, but is also amazing on its own with some rice. Or how about putting it on some nice chewy bread, to serve as a fantastic lunch. Guacamole works really well here, also!


    For the marinade:
  • 1/5 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 big tablespoon of thyme
  • 1 teaspoon of marjoram
  • 2 bay leafs
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 kilo of pork shoulder without bone, or Boston butt, cubed
    For the meat :
  • 4 cloves of garlic
  • 50 grams of butter or olive oil
  • 250 grams of diced onions
  • 3 oranges
  • 250 ml of orange juice, store bought (you can also use fresh, but that is not necessary)
    For the salsa: (optional, but definitely recommended)
  • 50 grams of onion, finely chopped
  • 5 grams of pickled jalapeno peppers, really finely chopped
  • a splash of orange juice
  • 1 small teaspoon of grated orange peel
  • a little bit of finely chopped cilantro, to taste

    For the marinade: (start the day before)
  1. Crumble the bay leafs
  2. Press the garlic and put with all the ingredients for the marinade in a bowl
  3. Add the meat, give it a good rub with the marinade, cover with cling film and leave it overnight in the fridge
    For the meat preparation :
  1. Heat the butter in a large skillet until quite hot
  2. Add the meat until nicely browned
  3. Add the pressed cloves of garlic and 125 grams of onion (so only half the onion!)
  4. Wash the oranges, grate a small teaspoon of peel for the salsa and put aside for later
  5. Squeeze the juice from them and add both juice and orange skins to the meat
  6. Add the 250 ml of orange juice
  7. Lower the heat, put a lid on the pan and let the meat simmer for +- 20 minutes
  8. After 20 minutes, take of the lid, add the remaining onion and increase the heat. You want to let all the juice evaporate now, until the meat starts to fry in the remaining oil. This is where the magic happens, the meat gets caramelized in the orange juice and gets amazingly tender
  9. Stir frequently
  10. As soon as you see only clear liquid left in the pan, let the meat brown for just a couple of minutes more and then turn off the heat
  11. Season generously with salt and pepper
    For the salsa:
  1. stir together all ingredients
  2. serve on the side and let everyone take a small spoon to sprinkle on top of their meat

If you are not sure about the meat, ask your butcher for meat he would advise for pulled pork

Yield: 8 people
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