Monday, May 5, 2014

Cinco de Mayo

Happy Cinco de Mayo!! I wish I knew more about why we celebrate this holiday...I recall hearing about the Battle of Puebla in high school Spanish class but clearly nothing stuck. Now I like to celebrate Mexican culture on this day eating delicious food and clinking my margarita glasses to those around me. I had a little "fiesta" yesterday and coming up with the menu was tough! There are so many scrumptious dishes to choose from and many margarita flavors. I picked a tasty menu and will be showing you some of my other favorite Mexican dishes in the coming weeks. 
I started the earlier afternoon with a couple apps and margaritas for the Hawks game. I made guac, bacon wrapped chorizo filled jalapeños, and chorizo fundido with tortilla chips. So delicious! To wash it down I made pineapple margaritas.
And for dinner I made carnitas tacos and some lime rice. 
Let's start with the pork since that takes a couple hours. Preheat your oven to 425 degrees. In a Dutch oven preheat to medium high heat and drizzle in a little olive oil. I used a pork shoulder, bone-in, about 3 1/2 pounds. Season generously with salt and pepper. 
Sear on all sides until a golden brown crust has formed.
Deglaze the pan with the juice of 1 orange, a beer (any kind you like drinking) and chicken broth, about halfway up the pork. You could omit the beer and just use broth and if you only have beef broth, no problem. There aren't any rules here!
I seasoned my pork with cumin, chili powder, cayenne pepper, and a few crushed garlic cloves. Bring it up to a simmer, cover, and then pop it in the oven for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours or until the pork is fall-apart just looking at it tender. 
Oh my goodness. The aromas of this pork slow cooking in beer is amazing! 
Once the meat is tender take it out (carefully) and transfer to a cutting board. Shred the meat with a fork, doesn't take much muscle!
 Transfer this shredded pork to a foil-lined baking sheet and stick back in the oven for about 15 minutes or until the outside is slightly caramelized and crisp.
Meanwhile, reduce the cooking liquid, season to taste, and transfer the meat back to the hot tub of flavor. Keep warm or until your ready for it! 
I served the carnitas in warm whole wheat tortillas and kept the toppings simple. Shredded Jack cheese, sour cream, lime wedges, jalapeños, and Cholula. I also served a side of rice, also keeping it simple. I warmed brown rice and added in fresh lime juice, chopped cilantro, salt and pepper. Easy peazy.

1 comment:

  1. wow Chef Lindsay- this recipe looks delicious from the Apps to the Carnitas and of course the pineapple margaritas!!!!