Haitian Carnitas? Do they even make carnitas in Haiti?
Hell, I dunno. But it sounds intriguing, doesn't it? If they don't, they should. If they do....kudos!
Now I don't cook pork very often. Some cuts are a little pricey. Some cuts are a little ...I dunno....weird? (you will never....eveeeeeeeer see pickled pork feet in my kitchen....just sayin).
When I see pork chops, I think...(I know...this is bad!!!) shake-n-bake.
When I see pork butt, I think.....CARNITAS!!!!
When I was looking for some haitian dishes for the BakeSpace forum challenge, I came across a few that caught my attention. Since I couldn't make up my mind...I went with all of them. This is recipe #2 (there's still one more that I need to post). The first recipe was my Mango Cupcakes with Lemon Glaze. Which was another haitian inspired dish but not truly authentic.
Which brings me back to my Haitian Carnitas. The recipe called for pork loin. I had a pork butt that I wanted to use....and well, that led me to a nice alteration with fantastic results. Flavorful, tender... succulent....and a hint of heat (although you can turn up that heat if you want by added more peppers)
6 lbs pork shoulder (aka butt)
1 large onion, chopped
3 oz chopped shallots
1 cup orange juice
12 oz beer
1/4 teaspoon dried savory or thyme
salt and pepper to taste
1 hot red pepper, minced
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon cumin
1 - 2 tablespoon creole seasoning
3 garlic cloves, minced
2 or more jalapenos, minced
2 teaspoons chicken bullion
Preheat the oven to 250' F
Combine the savory (or thyme), salt and pepper, cumin, and creole seasoning. Rub the pork with the mixture. Place the pork in a large roasting pan. Add the, shallots, peppers, orange juice, beer and chicken bullion.
Cover and cook for a good 7 hours.
When the meat is done....and falls off the bone
let cool a bit then remove the bone and as much fat as you can. (In case you haven't noticed....this particular cut of pork is full of fat. Hmmm...maybe THATS why they call it "pork butt"), leaving the liquid in the roasting pan.
Heat a good sized skillet with a bit of oil and brown the chunks of meat. Remove the meat and set aside. While this is happening, skim as much fat as you can from the saved liquid that's still in the roasting pan. Heat the liquid and reduce....the more the reduce, the more flavor it will have. Add about 2 cups of the liquid to the skillet where you browned the meat and de-glaze the pan.
Pour liquid over meat and serve.
I couldn't serve carnitas, haitian or otherwise, without pico de gallo, guacamole, rice and a warm tortilla
Let's just say..... TASTE BUD HEAVEN!
I am submitting this recipe to Regional Recipes, hosted by Joanne at Eats Well With Others. Regional Recipes is "a blogging event that celebrates food from all over the world!" Her deadline for the Haitian recipes is April 30th, 2010....so there's still time to play too!