Pork Carnitas

Last night, Sean was concerned that we were eating so many different kinds of foods (e.g. Thai, Mexican, Indian).  I felt a little sorry for him, because tonight’s menu was another “Mexican” meal.  Happily for him, he liked it, and tonight said that he’s lucky to live in a family that eats so many different things.

I looked through several recipes last week, and decided to try this recipe for Pork Carnitas posted on SimplyScratch.com.  I thought of using tomatillos, but we tried it with oranges as directed first because this is a completely new dish for us; we’ll experiment next time.  The meat was very simple to prepare for the crock pot.  I didn’t add the onion until after the first hour of cooking because… well, we’ve started going through onions almost as quickly as milk.  I added the onion after my daily milk and onion run to the grocery store.Pork Carnitas in the crock pot

This smelled delicious cooking!  The orange cooking just made the air seem brighter.  I forgot that Sean hates the smell and taste of oranges.  He does like Orange Chicken, though, so I knew there was hope.  And he really liked it.

The only change we made to the recipe was to brown the shredded meat in peanut oil instead of lard.  I couldn’t bring myself to do more than that.  Honestly, the meat had enough fat in it that we could have browned it without adding any oil at all.  Next time, I’ll cut out most of the fat before the meat goes in the crock pot.  We may try tomatillos, but the orange added a great flavor, too.

I made some guacamole today, too.  After reading some reviews online, I cut back on the onion and tomato- only about 2 or 3 TBSP of each for 2 avocados.  1/2 tsp salt, a couple of cloves of garlic, and lime juice.  This was the best guacamole I’ve ever made.  This wasn’t the best guacamole I’ve ever eaten, but the best I’ve made, by far.  Hooray!

We served the pork on tortillas with tomatoes, guacamole, and sour cream.20140415_181550

Everyone liked this meal.  We’ll definitely be making it again.  Not all the time, but every so often.  Using the  crock pot to cook the meat was so easy- very quick and simple to get started in the morning. Browning the pork after cooking added a great texture to the meal.

The only problem with dinner tonight is that it didn’t stretch very far.  The person who shredded the meat (with great willingness and a cheerful attitude) before I browned it  had never done such a thing before.  Our 4 lb roast ended up being about 1-1/2 cups shredded meat.  The rest was in the trash before I realized it.  We’ll do a little training before the next meat-shredding task.

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