The Mexican state of Michoacan is famous for their pork “carnitas”, cooked in big copper pots called “cazos” that give the dish it’s signature flavor. It is traditionally served mixed with a very mild green salsa, but you can add hot salsa after serving.
For the broiled pork “Carnitas”
- 18 lbs pork meat – use a mix of whole ham or butt (“maciza”), ribs (“aldilla”), loin (“lomo”), hog maws (“buche”) and trimmed pork rinds (“cueritos”)
- 12 quarts rendered pork lard>
- 3 quarts water
- 1 cup salt
- Additional 3 quarts water to dissolve the salt in
For the Tomatillo salsa verde (per every 10 ounces of meat)
- 2 cups La Patrona Crushed Tomatillo Salsa Base
- ½ onion, julienne sliced
- 1 clove of garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
- Chopped cilantro to taste
- Pepper to taste
- Mexican style copper “cazo” (deep copper pot) and wooden spatula
PREPARATION – CARNITAS
Heat the rendered pork lard in the copper “cazo” over high heat. When the lard starts changing color to a golden brown, start carefully adding the ham or butt pieces in a layer. Layer the ribs on top of the first layer and the loin pieces on top of the ribs. Add the layer of hog maws and slowly pour in the first 3 quarts of water (carefully, as the lard should be very hot). Cook uncovered for 1 hour, moving the meat pieces slightly every 15 minutes.
Dissolve the cup of salt in the remaining water. After the first hour of cooking, add the remaining pork rinds as a final layer and pour in the salted water. Cook uncovered for another hour and a half, or until the meat falls off the bone and there is very little water left.
Turn of the heat and remove just enough of the layer of pork rinds to take out the meat you want to serve. Chop the meat slightly before serving.
PREPARATION – CARNITAS SALSA VERDE
For every 10 ounces of meat (or to taste): Heat the oil in a saucepan over medium heat and cook the minced garlic for 1 minute. Add the sliced onion, the meat and pepper, cooking for 2 minutes. Finally add the Crushed Tomatillo Salsa Base and mix thoroughly until all the meat is coated and just heated through.
Serve immediately with chopped cilantro, warm corn tortillas and La Patrona Salsa Roja Norteña.