I believe I mentioned that this year we were going a little non-traditional for our Christmas dinner. No turkey, no goose. No rib roast, no tenderloin. No, this year we were going MEXICAN!!
We started with some excellent guacamole make by the Sil, with Trader Joe's tortilla chips. She makes the BEST!
The Niece made Chicken Enchiladas, again, excellent.
Cheesy goodness and very creamy. Maybe she will give us the recipe
And an interesting corn salad, Esquites, made with charred corn, lime juice, cotija cheese..some jalapeño and cilantro. Maybe I will make that again and give you the recipe, since it seems I forgot to take a photo.
It was tender and tasty, perfect to wrap up in a nice warm tortilla, with some salsa and topped with some Queso Fresco.
I made the recipe up, taking a few ideas from here, a few from there..
Mexican Slow Cooker Pork Carnitas
You start with a pork shoulder, about 5 pounds or so.
Cut it into big chunks, about 4 inches, removing any large pieces of fat and bones.
Cut small slits in each piece and add slivers of garlic to each slit, using maybe 5-6 cloves of garlic, cut into slivers, in total.
Dust pieces generously with Adobe spice mix, put in a gallon zip lock bag and let sit in the frig overnight or several hours.
When the meat has marinated, preheat a couple of tbs. spoons of oil in a heavy pan and brown the pieces of meat, until well browned, about 5 minutes per side.
When they are all browned, deglaze the browning pan with 1 cup of chicken stock and add the brown bits and stock to the slow cooker.
Add 2-3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (to taste. they are spicy) and one 4 oz. can of diced green chilies to the slow cooker and then, as you brown each piece, add it on top of the peppers.
Cook on high for about 1/2 hour an then lower to low and cook a total of 8 hours. When done, remove from slower cooker and let cool a bit. When cool, shred the pork, removing and fat that remains.
Take the liquid in the slow cooker and defat. But the shredded meant in an over proof pan, about 9x13, pour on 1 cup of the defatted cooking liquid and put into a 400 degree oven until the top of the meant get brown and crispy and most of the liquid is absorbed.
OH MY, SO tender!! Juicy, yet crispy.
You could take the basic method and add some changes. Use different spices, some cumin or chili powder, a different liquid to deglaze, like orange juice of wine. You could add diced tomatoes and/or onions...although it was delicious just as it was.
But the basic slow cooking and especially, I think, the browning, with the liquid to keep it moist, to finish it off is the key.
Delicious in a tortilla, a taco or a sandwich...or just over some rice.
This is my contribution this to this week's Weekend Cooking.
"Weekend Cooking is open to anyone who has any kind of food-related post to share: Book (novel, nonfiction) reviews, cookbook reviews, movie reviews, recipes, random thoughts, gadgets, fabulous quotations, photographs. If your post is even vaguely foodie, feel free to grab the button and link up anytime over the weekend."
Be sure to check out the other entries this week. As always, hosted by Beth Fish Reads.