BRAISED PORK CARNITAS IN TOMATILLO BROTH
*One-Pot, Entertainment Food, Make-Ahead, Good for Freezing
Active Time: 15 min
Cooking Time: 2 ½-3 hours
Looking for a low-effort, high-return recipe that makes people flip out and think you are a pro in the kitchen? This is my go-to for casual group dinner entertaining and never fails to impress. The key to success is making sure the pork is completely cooked through and easily pulls apart with a fork. The mildly spicy and delicious flavors and seasonings are taken care of with the addition of Tomatillo “Salsa Verde” and chicken broth. This is also a great dish for make-ahead dinners as the flavors meld together and actually improve over a day or two. If Pork in not your “thing”, sub boneless, skinless chicken thighs and reduce cooking time to 1 ½ hours.
Serve cooked pork topped with sour cream, sliced radishes sprinkled with sea salt, roughly chopped cilantro, thinly sliced scallions, lime wedges and pickled jalapenos. Also make sure you have warm tortillas (either flour or corn) or chips on the side. Another variation is to stir in a 15-ounce can drained and rinsed hominy at the end to make a stew.
3-pound piece boneless Pork Shoulder (also known as Pork Butt), trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces
3 Tablespoons canola oil
1 red onion, peeled, halved and cut into 1/4 –inch julienne strips
2 cups (16 ounces) store-bought Tomatillo “salsa verde” sauce (Frontera is good)
3 cups home-made chicken stock, or store-bought low sodium organic chicken broth (I like Swanson)
Season cubed pork with salt and pepper. In a large dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium high heat. Working in batches, brown the pork on all sides, remove from the pot and set aside.
Add the remaining tablespoon of oil and sauté the sliced onions until just soft, about 5 minutes. Add the browned pork back to the pot and stir in the tomatillo salsa verde and chicken broth. Bring to a boil over medium high heat, partially cover and reduce to medium low heat to simmer. Cook, checking occasionally until pork easily pulls apart with a fork, about 2 ½-3 hours.