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Feed Your Head! A place to post your favorite recipes and such

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  • #14879

    I’m not ready to post anything yet, but here’s a little spot we can share recipes, techniques, successes (and failures), and anything else that comes to mind, when working in the food preparation realm.




    Carnitas (modified from Cooks Illustrated)

    4 pound boneless pork butt, fat cap trimmed to 1/8 inch thick, cut into 4-5 pieces. Be sure to include bone.

    Yellow mustard (no need to use good mustard, it adds no flavor and is just to hold the rub)

    Dinosaur Cajun Foreplay BBQ rub

    Salt and ground black pepper

    1 Tablespoon ground cumin

    1 small onion, peeled and halved

    2 bay leaves

    1 teaspoon dried oregano

    2 tablespoons juice from 1 lime

    Chicken stock to just cover the pork in the pot

    1 medium orange, halved
    Begin by spreading mustard onto each piece of pork and then put a moderate dust of BBQ rub on each piece. Either smoke each piece at 225 to 275 for 1-2 hours or sear for 4-5 minutes on med-high on a grill until they have a uniform brown crust. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 300 degrees. Combine pork, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, cumin, onion, bay leaves, oregano, lime juice, and stock in large Dutch oven (liquid should just barely cover meat). Juice orange into medium bowl and remove any seeds (you should have about 1/3 cup juice). Add juice and spent orange halves to pot. Bring mixture to simmer over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally. Cover pot and transfer to oven; cook until meat is soft and falls apart when prodded with fork, about at least 3 to as much as 6 hours, if not tightly covered you might have to add water after a few hours to keep pork covered.
    Remove pot from oven and, using slotted spoon, transfer pork to bowl; remove orange halves, onion, and bay leaves from cooking liquid and discard (do not skim fat from liquid). Place pot over high heat (alternatively, transfer cooking liquid to a large wide fry pan to reduce reduction time) and simmer liquid, stirring frequently, until thick and syrupy (heat safe spatula should leave wide trail when dragged through glaze), 8 to 12 minutes (HA!!! I have never achieved a thick syrupy consistency in less than 40 minutes). The liquid will start to fizzle in the pan as it is approaching the right consistency. It tastes best when it has a honey-like consistency.
    While the cooking liquid is reducing, use 2 forks to shred each piece of pork and place it in a large bowl. Fold in reduced liquid; season with salt and pepper to taste. Start broiler on High. Spread pork in even layer on wire rack set inside rimmed baking sheet or on broiler pan (meat should cover almost entire surface of rack or broiler pan). I’ve done it with and without a wire rack. Advantage of rack is you lose some of the fat. Advantage of no rack is that it is easier to flip the pulled pork. Place baking sheet/broiler pan on lower-middle rack and broil until top of meat is well browned and edges are slightly crisp and charred, 5 to 8 minutes. Using wide metal spatula, flip the shredded meat and continue to broil until top is well browned and edges are slightly crisp and charred, 5 to 8 minutes longer. I usually flip the meat twice so all of it has a touch of a char. Serve immediately with warm tortillas and garnishes.


    MARGARITAS (modified from I forget where)

    The longer the zest and juice mixture is allowed to steep, the more developed the citrus flavors in the finished margaritas. Recommend steeping for the full 24 hours, although the margaritas will still be great if the mixture is steeped only for the minimum 4 hours. If you’re in a rush and need to serve margaritas immediately, omit the zest and skip the steeping process altogether.

    • 4 teaspoons grated lime zest
    • ½ cup lime juice from 2 to 3 medium limes
    • 4 teaspoons grated lemon zest
    • 1/4 cup lemon juice from 2 to 3 medium lemons
    • 4 teaspoons orange zest
    • ¼ cup orange juice
    • ¼ cup superfine sugar
    • pinch table salt
    • 2 cups crushed ice
    • 1 cup 100 percent agave tequila, preferably Reposado (who am I kidding, whatever I can afford)
    • 1cup Triple Sec

    1. 1. Combine fruit zests and juices, sugar, and salt in large liquid measuring cup; cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until flavors meld, 4 to 24 hours.
    2. Divide 1 cup crushed ice between 4 or 6 margarita or double old-fashioned glasses. Strain juice mixture into 1-quart pitcher or cocktail shaker. Add tequila, Triple Sec, and remaining crushed ice; stir or shake until thoroughly combined and chilled, 20 to 60 seconds (or throw it all in a blender and pulse a few times). Strain into ice-filled glasses; serve immediately.


    Hmmm re Carnitas recipe above, its kind of hard to use the bone when I call for a boneless pork butt. The recipe should read “…bone-in…”.


    I’ll second (or 6) those margaritas.

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