As a new food blogger, I am starting to understand the importance of the food picture. It’s equally important for the food to both look good and taste great for people to be interested. When I saw the pictures of the braised carnitas at The Culinary Chronicles, I wanted to try making this right away. Her pictures are so delicious, aren’t they?
I followed her recipe exactly but the only changes I made are the amount of meat (3 lbs instead of 5), the brand of beer (the Sierra Nevada instead of Fat Tire), and cooking time (1 hr shorter than her recipe). It takes several hours to prepare, but most of the cooking time is baking in the oven. What a great weekend menu, right?
FYI, this is the recipe that I told you I wanted to share with you may be about 2 weeks ago. My focus on this blog is still Japanese food but please allow me to share non-Japanese food once in a while, especially the ones that my family and I really enjoyed. Also in Japan, the Japanese eats a lot more Westernized meals at home or restaurant than you probably guessed.
- 3 lbs boneless country pork ribs
- kosher/sea salt (I use Diamond Crystal; use half for table salt) (for the meat)
- freshly ground black pepper (for the meat)
- neutral-flavored oil (vegetable, rice bran, canola, etc) (for cooking the meat)
- ½ onion (diced)
- 3-4 clove garlic (minced)
- 2 bottles beer (24 fl oz, 710 ml)
- 1 tsp chili powder
- ¼ tsp paprika
- ¼ tsp cayenne pepper
- ¼ tsp ground cumin
- 2 bay leaves
- Gather all the ingredients. Preheat the oven to 350ºF (180ºC).
- Cut the meat into 5-inch (13 cm) chunks and generously season with salt and pepper.
- In a large Dutch oven, heat oil on medium-high heat. Place the pork in a single layer without overlapping each other. If your pot is small, cook in batches to avoid steaming the meat.
- Cook the meat till brown without flipping too often. When all sides of the meat are nicely seared, transfer to a plate and set aside.
- Lower the heat to medium and add the onions to the pot.
- Sauté onions until tender and then add garlic to cook for 2 more minutes.
- Add the beer.
- Scrape off all the delicious brown bits on the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon.
- Add the pork back to the pot.
- Add all the seasonings.
- Mix all together.
- Braise in the preheated oven, uncovered, for about 2 ½ hours, turning the pork every half an hour during cooking.
- When much of the liquid is evaporated and the pork is falling apart, remove the pot from the oven. Take the pork pieces out to the plate so they will cool down.
- When the meat is cooled down, shred them into bite sizes with your hand. Serve with corn or flour tortillas and your choice of salsas and toppings.
- You can keep the leftovers in an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for a month.