Sunday, July 13, 2008
Straight to her arms I'd go sailing...
Sundays are simply the best days for cooking, in my opinion...
I always seem to do those long, drawn out dishes on Sundays. The ones you sit and relax over, the ones you certainly don't rush. I love the notion of the whole house filled with some tantelizing aroma, the anticipation of things to come, and that final glorious moment where what was once tough and cheap, turns into an exquisite heavenly commodity.
Today, for example, I made Carnitas.
Carnitas are a simple dish: Braised then Roasted pork. They are, undoubtedly, one of the greatest pork dishes ever. Why so great? Simple - Cheap, Easy, Fuck-Off Delicious. And I'm not kidding with my description there. There is so much flavor and tenderness involved with this dish, it's unreal. The kicker in all of this is how insanely easy it is to make if you have the patience.
2# Pork Shoulder, cut up into small pieces
2 t Kosher Salt
2 t Ground Black Pepper
2 t Ground Oregano
1 Onion, roughly chopped
1/2 cup White Wine
1/2 t Cumin
1/2 t Chili Powder
Water, enough to cover pork
Start by heating 1 T of oil over medium heat in a heavy pan with a lid. (You will NOT need more oil than this...)
Toss the cut up pieces of pork in a bowl with the Salt, Pepper and Oregano and coat generously.
Sear the meat in the pan, in batches, until evenly browned. Set aside.(The fat from the pork with quickly melt into the pan leaving plenty to saute the onion with...)
Add the onion to the pan and saute until golden.
Deglaze the pan with the white wine and simmer until reduced by 3/4.
Add the meat back into the pan, also adding the Cumin and Chili Powder.
Cover with JUST enough water to cover the pork and simmer over low heat for 4 hours.
After the four hours have passed, drain the pork into a collander and place in a bowl. Shred the pork with your fingers or two forks.
From this point, the pork is ready to be eaten but you can take one more step if you wish: Roast or fry the shredded pork until slightly crisp.
This is a winning meal, hands down. I topped the Carnitas with a freshly made Pico de Gallo, torn up some Cilantro for the plate, and put down a little spicy chipotle sauce for effect. Paired with a couple of Mojitos and some fresh baked White Chocolate Macadamia Nut Cookies, there is no better to have spent a Sunday evening.