Entertaining could be my middle name. I love cooking and having friends and family over to my place. Even when I was little I got excited when my parents had dinner parties. I always wanted to play waitress and help serve the guests. There is something so special about cooking a meal and sharing it with people who mean a lot to you.
Last week it was my night to host girl’s night and after much deliberation I decided to serve pork carnitas. As I have mentioned before, tacos are so great to entertain with. You can have most of the prep work done beforehand and have a clean kitchen when your guests arrive (something I learned to appreciate from my mom). Using the slow cooker allowed me to clean up all my prep dishes, which means I spent the hour before everyone arrived reading a magazine and enjoying a glass of wine. I prepped all my side dishes ahead of time and had the toppings for the tacos (guacamole, sour cream, cheese, coleslaw) ready in serving bowls in the fridge.
Here’s my ingredients for a Carnita’s dinner:
- Spicy coleslaw- I use broccoli slaw shreds instead of cabbage- holds up better. Just mix a bit of ranch and hot sauce and let sit in the fridge.
- Corn and/or flour tortillas- I heated mine in the skillet right before serving
- Toppings- guacamole, sour cream, shredded cheese, tomatoes, etc
- Sauteed veggies- I did onions and red and green peppers in a bit of garlic and olive oil
- Tortilla chips
- Pork Butt/Shoulder
- Pork Butt (mine was 4 lbs)
- Garlic cloves
- Salt, pepper
- Chili powder
- Half a beer
- Little chicken stock
- Optional- I used a chipotle raspberry marinate – to kick up the flavor
- Optional- add slices of onions
- Cut pork into pieces and cut off as much fat as possible.
- Brown the pieces on all sides in a skillet with a bit of oil (less than 10 minutes total).
- Place the browned pieces in a crockpot add other ingredients.
- After about 6 hours on low, or 4 hours on high the pork should be very tender and shred easily.
- You can serve from there, or I choose to shred and place in a skillet, removing any other fatty pieces. I brown the meat a bit more to get the traditional look and taste to the pieces.