Everyone will love this recipe, kids and grown ups, as it’s delicious, versatile and fun!
Happy Cinco De Mayo!
It’s not too late to throw a party to celebrate Cinco De Mayo. All you need is a 3 lb piece of pork shoulder, tortillas, mango salsa, garnishes like radishes and avocado, and some beer, of course. Don’t forget the party hats!
Pork shoulder can be cooked in a slow cooker or Dutch oven. So all you have to do is to rub some spices on it, preferably the night before or at least 1 hr prior to cooking. When you are ready to cook, heat up a large skillet with a bit of olive oil and brown the meat, about 7 minutes per side. Place the meat in the slow cooker and set the timer to 4-6 hrs depending on how much time you have. If using Dutch oven, place the meat directly in it. It will get brown as it cooks.
Cook the meat on low heat, adding 1/2 cup of liquid like water, stock or beer, as needed. It will be ready when the pork falls apart and can be easily shredded with two forks.
While the meat is cooking, make the salsa. We love my mango salsa, which I described here and here. That’s what I usually serve. Feel free to make it spicier by adding Serrano chilies or crunchier with jicama. Do what you like! Experiment!
Set your taco bar with lots of garnishes like sliced radishes, avocado, chopped onion, shredded cabbage, some limes. Heat up the tortillas by wrapping them in aluminum foil and placing them in an oven heated to 350 degrees. Alternatively, put them in a warmed grill but away from the direct heat. Let them sit there for 10-15 minutes.
Let your guests have fun when putting together their tacos.
Serves: 6-8 people Prep time: 15 minutes Ready in 4-6 hours
- 3 lbs pork shoulder roast (or “pork butt”)
- 2-3 Tablespoons olive oil
- If using a Dutch Oven, add 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock/1 bottle (11.2 fl oz) beer/water
Spice Rub (store the unused leftovers in a ziplock baggie for the next time):
- 4 Tablespoons chili powder
- 1 Tablespoons kosher salt
- 1 Tablespoon brown sugar
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (or less)
- 1 teaspoon ground oregano
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
- pinch of ground cloves
- 2-3 ripe mangoes, peeled and diced finely
- 3-4 Roma tomatoes, diced finely
- 1 cup of jicama, peeled and diced finely (optional)
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and diced finely
- 1 small red onion (about 1/3 cup) diced finely
- fresh cilantro, chopped (about 2-3 tablespoons)
- lime juice from 2 limes, to taste
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 teaspoons or more of honey
- Tortillas, warmed
- Sliced avocados
- Sliced radishes
- Finely diced red onion
- Chopped cilantro
- Finely shredded napa or green cabbage
- Lime wedges
- Prepare the spice rub and set aside. Trim some of the fat off the pork shoulder. Rub the spice mix all over it and let it sit on the counter for 1 hour or refrigerate overnight.
- If using slow cooker, brown the meat first. Heat up 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil in a large skillet and add the meat. Cook it about 5-7 minutes per side, until golden brown. Transfer the meat into a slow cooker and set it on low for 8 hours or high for 4-6 hours.
- If using a Dutch oven, heat up the olive oil and add the meat. Cook it on medium high for the first 10 minutes, until the pork is golden brown on all the sides. Lower the heat, add 1 bottle of beer (11.2 fl oz) or chicken stock (water is ok, too) and cover. Cook for 2-3 hours, turning the meat occasionally and making sure there is enough liquid so it won’t burn.
- When pork is done, transfer it onto a cutting board and using two forks shred it. Return to the pot and keep warm until ready to serve.
- Salsa: combine all the ingredients, stir well and adjust the seasonings. Set aside.
- Heat up the tortillas. For a fun party offer a variety of tortillas.
- Prepare all the garnishes and invite everyone to the table.
- Have fun!
The rub spice mix comes from http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/slow_cooker_mexican_pulled_pork/