I will start with a couple of words; LOW and SLOW. Two words that really do something fabulous to food, in particular delicious chunks of meat. As winter is here, my smoking of meat has subdued a bit, and now I am somewhat trapped indoors. Yes, this means no outdoor grilling for a while, and a limited time smoking fish, pork shoulders, or making jerky. With all of that said, and trust me, I am a bit saddened by this, I must make the comfort food in the oven. Don’t get me wrong though, I am a foodie, and will find ways indoors to provide the comfort food that I have over the last few years.
While I recently searched my freezer for cuts of meat, I came across one of many pork shoulders, and I wanted to do something different than the smoked flavor. I quickly searched my spice cabinet and refrigerator, and found just the right ingredients to make a Cuban style roasted pork. Sure, I thought of making carnitas right away, as they it is truly delicious, but something inspired me to make a killer rub and delicious basting sauce to go with it. Enough chitter chatter, lets get started.
- 1 4-6 lb Pork Shoulder
- 4 cloves of garlic
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp course salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 1 tbsp olive oil
To a mortar, add the garlic, oregano, salt, pepper, and olive oil, and with a pestle, pound to make a paste. With a knife, add quarter inch slots all over the pork shoulder. Next, rub the paste all over the shoulder, add to a large ziplock bag.
In the meatime, let’s get started on the adobo sauce.
- 1 lime, juiced
- 1 cup of orange juice, pulp free
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro
- 2 tablespoon brown sugar
- 1 tbsp course salt
- 1/2 tbsp black pepper
- 4 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp dried majoram
To make the sauce, add all of your ingredients into a blender or food processor and pulse until everything is combined. Add the adobo sauce to the ziplock bag, seal, and move it all around. Place the bag in a large bowl, and let it marinade for 12-24 hours. The longer the better.
Now we begin the cooking part, the LOW and SLOW if you will. Preheat your oven to 250 degrees. To a large roasting pan (I use my turkey roasting pan with rack) , place the shoulder on the rack (reserving all of the sauce), and add about 3 cups of water to the pan. Cook in the 250 oven for roughly 5-8 hours, covered with foil. In the meantime, add the remaining adobo sauce to a sauce pan, and bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to a simmer, adding a bit more orange juice if you so desire. When you think you are ready, you have to wait. This is the tough part. After the cook time, remove the foil, and increase the oven heat to 400 and cook for roughly 10 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let it rest for at least 10 minutes. This is another tough time. Just be patient, as it all pays off.
Slice a yellow or white onion really finely. A sharp knife really helps here. Once you are ready, you can either slice, or use a fork and watch it all fall apart, I sliced mine really thin, as well as shredded some. Place on a large serving plate, top with the onions, and pour the remaining sauce over the pork.
The nice thing about this pork, is that it is packed with some really killer flavors, and you can use this for tacos, or make a really nice sandwhich.
I hope you enjoy.