On a whim, I decided to make carnitas tacos for Valentine’s Day dinner at home. I didn’t have to worry about not thinking ahead because my pressure cooker would cook the meat even if it wasn’t all the way thawed in time. Whew!
Thankfully I’d thrown a pork shoulder in the freezer when they’d been on sale at the grocery store, so I’d just have to rummage through the refrigerator and cupboard to see what I could cobble together to make a meal.
Appetizer: Spicy Pickled Carrots & Jalapenos
- 6 Carrots
- 2 Large Jalapenos
- 1 Medium Yellow Onion
- 3 Cloves Garlic
- 2 tsp Whole Peppercorns
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 1/2 Cups Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1 1/2 Cups Water
Boil the water and apple cider vinegar in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. When at a full rolling boil shut off the flame and immediately add the rest of the ingredients. Stir once and let stand for about an hour. Serve at room temperature, or if you have time, refrigerate to bring out even more flavor. Store in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator and eat within a week.
Now on to the main course.
Pressure Cooker Carnitas
- 1 TBLS Olive Oil
- 2 tsp Freshly Ground Sea Salt
- 1 1/2 tsp Ground Cloves
- Freshly Ground Pepper
- 3 Pounds Pork Shoulder
- 1/2 Yellow Onion, Sliced
- 3 Cloves Garlic Peeled
- 4-6 Sprigs Fresh Cilantro
- 1 Large Fresh Lemon
- 1 Jalapeño Sliced in Half
- 1 1/3 Cup Chicken Broth
- Set the pressure cook to brown setting
- Pour the oil into the pressure cooker
- Sprinkle the salt, pepper and cloves on all sides of the pork
- Place the pork in the pressure cooker and brown on all sides
- Squeeze the juice from the lemon over the pork, add the onion, garlic, cilantro, halved jalapeño, the squeezed lemons and the chicken broth
- Cover the pressure cooker, lock on the lid, and bring to high pressure
- Cook pork at high pressure for 45 minutes
- Turn off and allow pressure to release naturally
- Transfer pork to a baking sheet
- Preheat the broiler to high
- Shred pork with two forks on baking sheet
- Broil until the pork starts to crisp, about 3 minutes.
- Serve with warm corn tortillas, sliced avocado, shredded cabbage, pepper jack or cojito cheese, hot sauce and wedges of lime
A can of refried beans, a couple of street tacos and a beer and it’s a meal!
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