Pastured Carnitas - Mexican Street Taco Style

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Real talk. There is nothing in the world better to me than a perfectly composed Mexican Street Taco. Warm toasted tortilla, juicy meat, onions & cilantro, topped with some spice and lime. YUMMM! šŸ˜©

The other day I found myself experiencing some rather intense (but normal)  taco cravings. Since we moved out of the big city, its been hard to find an authentic street taco - none of that beans and cheese and sour cream stuff know what I'm sayin'? Well, when the world doesn't deliver take matters into your own hands is what I figured... and no one else is serving this quality of meat :). 

This is a simple recipe I modified slightly from Recipe Tin Eats. Once your carnitas are cooked, there are a variety of ways to eat them besides tacos - on their own, in a salad, quesadilla, with eggs, on top of a soup, really the list is endless. So do what you will with them and please enjoy! 

Pastured Carnitas Street Tacos 

* This recipe requires a crockpot*

Prep Time: 15 mins

Cook time: 6hrs + 

Servings: 8-10

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Ingredients

  • Pork Roast (butt or shoulder, 2-3lbs) 
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 JalapeƱo peppers
  • 4-5 Cloves of garlic, minced
  • Juice from 2 or 3 oranges, or 3/4 cup orange juice
  • 1 tbsp ried oregano
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Salt & pepper 
  • 1 bunch of cilantro, chopped
  • Street style tortillas (corn or flour) 
  • 1 or 2 limes, wedged 
  • Optional: queso fresco
  • Your favorite salsa! 

Cooking Instructions:

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  1. Dry off the pork roast and rub evenly on all sides with salt & pepper.
  2. Mix the oregano, cumin and 1 tbsp of olive oil in a bowl, and rub mixture all over the pork roast. 
  3. Place the herbed roast in a crockpot (fat cap side up) and cover with onion, jalapeƱo, and garlic. 
  4. Cook on low for 8 to 10 hours, or on high for 6. 
  5. Once done cooking, remove the roast from the crockpot and and shred with 2 forks. The meat should fall apart easily. Skim the excess fat off the cooking liquid and reduce if desired, or set aside. 

To Serve: 

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  1.  Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a cast iron or regular non-stick pan on high heat. 
  2. One the pan is hot, add the shredded pork and pour over some excess juices for flavor. As the liquid cooks off, the carnitas should start to crisp. Once they achieve optimal golden crispiness, flip and sear just briefly - you don't want to crisp it as much as the other side to retain moisture. 
  3. Heat the tortillas. I prefer heating them directly on the gas burner, but you can also heat them in a pan, oven or microwave. 
  4. Place some carnitas on the tortillas, top with onion, cilantro and jalapeƱo (if desired) finish with some fresh squeezed lime juice, and enjoy! 
Margaret Paradise