Tuesday, March 19, 2013

A word: Pernil

Nothing, and I mean nothing, says Christmas like a beautiful, fragrant, juicy Pernil (slow roasted pork shoulder). The smell in the house as it's cooking in the oven reminds me of the Christmas holidays growing up... Of course, you don't have to eat it during Christmas time... It can be eaten anytime!!! And I'm I going to show you how to make it, the way my mom makes it!!!



Pork shoulder - Picnic cut (with a little bit of the fat)
9 garlic cloves (3 whole and the rest minced)
1 1/2 cups of red wine
Juice of a couple of oranges
3 TBS of adobo (or a combination of 1/2 TBS black pepper, 1/2 TBS crushed oregano and 2 TBS of salt)

Marinate the roast 3 days before you plan to cook it: Make several slits about 2 inches apart and 1½ inches long through the skin of the roast and into the meat. Make the slits about half way through the roast (unless you hit a bone) Wiggle a finger in the slits to make them easier to fill. Fill each slit with the adobo, coaxing as much as you can into each with the help of an espresso spoon or small teaspoon. Turn the roast over and do the same to all sides. If you have adobo left over, rub it all over the outside of the roast - I do the same with 3 cloves of garlic... It gives it a great flavor. Make a marinade with the orange juice, wine and 3 minced garlic cloves. Cover the pork with the marinade and refrigerate, covered, at least 1 day or up to 3 days... Turn everyday to get the flavor worked in really good.

Preheat the oven to 450° F.

Set the roast skin side up on a rack in a roasting pan. Roast 1 hour, turn the heat down to 400° F and roast until the skin is deep golden brown and crackly and there is no trace of pink near the bone, about 2 hours. An instant reading thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the roast should register 150° F. To be sure, check the roast in a few spots. Let the roast rest at least 15 minutes before carving.

It turns out juicy and delicious... Just the way my mom makes it! You want to know what is the best part(s)? You'll have lots of leftovers, the pork cut is very economical and you can even use the bone to make a bean soup... You must try this, It is so fantastic. 

Come back tomorrow, I will show you (one way) to use leftover Pernil!

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