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Old 12-16-2003, 10:54 PM   #1
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"Carnitas Mexicanas"


One of the most traditional methods of cooking carnitas is to season lard with a number of ingredients, bring it up to temperature, add pork chunks (trocitos de puerco) to the lard (manteca de puerco). The lard is slowly heated to a rolling simmer and the pork cooks this way for a couple of hours. The outside of the pork is seared over immediately and the inside cooks and steams slowly. Carnitas cooked this way (contrary to popular belief) do not absorb large amounts of lard because of the searing over. The meat remains moist on the inside and crispy on the outside.
The traditional large copper pot or "Cazo de Cobre" (which resembles an earthernware cazuela) is used to cook carnitas, buches, chicharón, and other traditional Mexican culinary delights.

It is said that lard has only half the cholestrol of butter. This may or may not be serve as solace to some?

This recipe for carnitas does not require deep frying but can be very easily prepared at home in your kitchen. I have prepared this recipe many, many times, and is always great. Yes! it calls for Coca Cola!

5 pounds pork butt, cut into 4 inch by 4 inch chunks
2 large white onions, coarsely chopped
10 cloves garlic, crushed
4 bay leaves
1 teaspoon salt
12 whole peppercorns
water to cover

Place pork and all other ingredients in a large pot. Cover with water, bring to a boil and reduce heat to simmer 11/2 hours. Turn off heat and allow to cool in cooking liquid. Remove pork, and place in a pot for the next step:

Prepare the following in a non-reactive pan (stainless steel, porcelain, etc.):

2 cups Coca-Cola
2 cups water
1/2 cups orange juice
10 cloves garlic, crushed
a few grinds of fresh black pepper
1 teaspoon salt
The cooled cooked pork from the above procedure

Place Coke, water, orange juice, garlic, pepper, salt, pork in the pot. Bring to a boil, lower heat and simmer uncovered until all liquid in has evaporated. Continue cooking and a little bit of crust will form on the bottom of the pan and on some of the pork. You will need to occasionally scrape the bottom of the pan. Careful not to burn.

Pork prepared this way shreds very easily and is very filling good for soft tacos, tacos dorados, taquitos, or anytime shredded meat is called for.

The flavor is really great. Cooked this many times!

"Saludos, Amor y Dinero"

Bill Gibson
Crestline, CA
"aficionado de la cocina mexicana"


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Old 12-28-2003, 09:30 AM   #2
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I tried carnitas cooked this way many years ago while visiting Mexico. One of the best poork dishes I have ever eaten in my life. Thanks for the recipe. I WILL try it!

"The odds of my being correct on any given issue are inversely proportionate to the proximity of my wife" BubbaGourmet
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Old 11-21-2013, 11:38 PM   #3
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Thank you Bill, But I don't want to cook them your way. I'm looking to find out how to cook them covered in lard the way they do in Mexico. I'll keep looking around
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Old 11-22-2013, 02:54 AM   #4
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If searing seals it from absorbing flavor then why put in the onion, garlic, bay leaves, and peppercorns?

When I've made Carnitas, it's basically slow poaching them in copious amounts of melted lard with bay leaves, garlic, and some orange juice and milk added in and then the heat is turned up to go from a poach to basically deep frying until it becomes GB&D. Remove garlic and bay leaves. Some shred, some leave it in chunks. Serve on double-stacked corn tortillas with diced white onion (rinsed & dried after dicing) and chopped cilantro, with a wedge of lime.
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Old 11-22-2013, 06:22 AM   #5
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This has gotta be a record - someone dredges up a decade-old thread to say they don't want to try the recipe?!

Welcome to DC, noolives!
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Old 11-22-2013, 02:45 PM   #6
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Originally Posted by GotGarlic View Post
This has gotta be a record - someone dredges up a decade-old thread to say they don't want to try the recipe?!

Welcome to DC, noolives!

And welcome to DC noolives. I'm pretty sure we other recipes for carnitas.
May you live as long as you wish and love as long as you live.
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Old 11-22-2013, 02:50 PM   #7
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Look up Rick Bayless's recipe.

Recipes from Chef Rick Bayless - Rick Bayless | Frontera
If you're gonna make a Key Lime pie, you have to use real Key Limes!
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Old 11-22-2013, 03:37 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by noolives View Post
Thank you Bill, But I don't want to cook them your way. I'm looking to find out how to cook them covered in lard the way they do in Mexico. I'll keep looking around
I've also seen them cooked (and sitting) in lard in taquerias.

Personally, I think if you're using a fatty cut of meat like the pork shoulder called for in the original post, you will get plenty of rendered fat without adding additional lard. But you are dead set on a recipe that includes lard, try this one:

Authentic Carnitas and Three Pounds of Lard | The Paupered Chef

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