Since we started keeping track of where our meat was coming from and what is actually in the meat, I’ve realized I have to buy cheaper cuts of meat. I used to buy steaks and breasts of chicken when I visited the grocery store, small cuts of meat that I could quickly cook when I got home from work. These cuts of meat are more expensive at Whole Foods because they hold their farmers to higher standards than the grocery store does (they have a rating system). Anyway, that is my choice and how I do things for now. So in case you didn’t know, most often, cheaper cuts of meat take a LONG time to cook if you want them to taste good. Or they take a lot of work, like for instance, a whole chicken is more work than preparing a simple chicken breast. The benefit is worth the cost to me, so we are going to do this for now while I’m home and can monitor the meat all day in a crock pot and have the time.
I found this simple slow-cooker Pork Carnitas recipe on allrecipes.com and thought I would share, with my changes, of course. I love allrecipes.com format, they have user reviews and people vote on the recipe, you can save recipes in a Recipe Box online and make note of your changes. SO COOL! It is such a great idea for recipes, because you can always find some terrible recipe online, but if there are reviews, then I feel much more comfortable trying it on my family. The meat from this recipe can be used in tortilla shells, over rice, in sandwiches, it is very versatile. We loved it, put it on fajitas with chopped tomato, lettuce, plain yogurt and shredded cheese. Next time I’m buying a bigger cut of meat so we’ll have more leftovers.
Recipe: Pork Carnitas
Summary: Delicious, shredded pork carnitas
- 1 (3 1/2) pound boneless pork shoulder, trimmed and cut into 2 inch chunks
- 2 oranges, quartered
- 1 large white onion, quartered
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
- 1/4 cup kosher salt
- 1 tablespoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon whole black peppercorns
- 2 bay leaves (I didn’t have bay leaves on hand so they aren’t necessary, but I imagine it would have been even better if I did use them)
- Place the pork shoulder, oranges, onion, garlic, kosher salt, cumin, black peppercorns, and bay leaves into a crock pot. Add water to cover pork. Set to low and simmer for 6-8 hours until meat is tender. Allow the pork to cool, covered, in the broth for 1 hour. Shred the meat with two forks.
Culinary tradition: USA (Southern)
Update on my hip: In case you are wondering, I’ve got an MRI scheduled for this week, and a follow-up appointment scheduled for next week. Hopefully things will go smoothly and we’ll get a plan of action to get me exercising again. It is the weirdest thing to me to not workout every day or every other day. It makes me feel tired and unmotivated. I’m trying to enjoy this down time because I know I’ll be doing physical therapy or, worst case scenario, surgery and physical therapy soon. I’ll keep ya’ll updated though, keep me in your thoughts and prayers!