Thursday, August 18, 2011

Carnitas! By, Mad Hungry:)

These marbled chunks of pork shoulder are first simmered to ensure they become tender, and then browned so they develop a flavorful crust. This recipe was also featured on "Mad Hungry with Lucinda Scala Quinn."

Martha Stewart Living, May 2008

Makes 6 to 7 cups; serves 8

6 pounds pork shoulder (butt or picnic roast), bone removed, meat cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes 2 tablespoons coarse salt
2 1/2 cups water

Place cubed pork, salt, and water in a deep, straight-sided 14-inch skillet. (Water should barely cover pork.) Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer gently, stirring and skimming foam from the surface occasionally, until water has evaporated completely, 55 to 60 minutes.
Once water has evaporated, pork will begin to brown in its own fat. Cook on all sides, using a spatula to turn cubes and scrape up crisp bits from the skillet, until browned and tender, about 15 minutes. Pork can be refrigerated for up to 1 day. Reheat in a skillet over low heat.

Taco Bar for the Carnitas

A taco bar lets guests select their favorite fillings and fixings, choosing from chicken, pork, lettuce, radishes, cilantro, cheese, sour cream, salsas, and a squeeze of lime. This recipe was also featured on "Mad Hungry with Lucinda Scala Quinn."

Martha Stewart Living, May 2008
Yield Serves 8

1 head romaine lettuce, shredded and refrigerated (until crisp and dry)
8 radishes, thinly sliced (about 3/4 cup)
1 cup fresh cilantro, plus more for garnish
3 limes, cut into wedges
1 pound queso fresco, crumbled, or Monterey Jack, shredded
8 ounces sour cream
Roasted-Tomato Salsa
Salsa Verde
Salsa Cruda
Poached Chicken
1 to 2 packages corn tortillas (12 count)

Arrange lettuce, radishes, and cilantro on a large platter. Place limes, cheese, sour cream, and salsas in separate serving dishes. Place chicken and pork in separate warm serving bowls. Garnish chicken with cilantro.

Toast each tortilla in a hot skillet or directly over a gas flame until softened, 15 to 20 seconds per side. Stack tortillas in a dish towel, keeping them wrapped.

Arrange all of the ingredients so that guests can make their own tacos.

Cook's Note
To keep the toasted tortillas warm, wrap them tightly in a dish towel, then in foil. Place in a 200-degree oven for up to 30 minutes. Remove foil, and transfer tortillas -- still folded in the towel -- to the buffet.

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