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Jul 31, 2010 07:28 PM

Carnitas recipe needed- your recommendations?

So i have done some reading and found that the combo of coke, oranges and i believe cogniac make a fantastic carnita?

can anyone tell me about their experience with this? and perhaps suggest a recipe you use?

I tasted a Michoacan style carnita that i would love to replicate it.

thanks so much in advance


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    1. How about the longest discussion in the list below this one?


      1. re: paulj

        Thank you

        i looked through but don't see any inclusion of coke.

        Would this make a difference ? Anyone use this succesfully?

        1. re: lestblight

          can anyone help with the "coke" question?

          not necessary?


          1. re: lestblight

            This article gives you a range of methods. It claims the Michoacan style is just simmered in lard with a minimum of added flavorings. Note that the source for their version with coke is 'alaska cooks'!


            1. re: lestblight

              "Tbear" uses Coke as a marinade for Pork Shoulder:


              And here's a Pulled Pork with Coke Recipe (that I haven't tried):


              Another Pork Roast with Coke Recipe:


            2. re: lestblight

              My sister in-laws husband uses coco cola in his carnitas (coca cola pork if you're searching the web). His is very good.

              I lost the recipe before I could make it so I'll have to ask for it again.

          1. I've made Rick Bayless' Michocan Carnitas... simple list of ingredients but delicious.

            I did not make the full recipe so I did not use 4 gallons of lard... I used about a 3 pints, enough to cover the pork.

              1. re: fearlessemily

                I like that. When he started talking about the fat sealing the juices, I though he'd try sous vide. Instead he went with the close fitting casserole. That suits my cookware better. I have done something along this line with a Chinese claypot, braising a fatty pork shank end with a minimum of added liquid. Some of comments, though, do mention sous vide.

                This article makes it clear that carnitas is more about the technique, than the added flavorings.

                1. re: paulj

                  Thanks for the links

                  so i see this recipe for coca cola pork ( below)

                  has anyone used this? does it help? or should i stick with a more traditional carnita recipe?

                  also im not sure about recipes like these


                  barely any aromatics or orange peel.. i figured this would be necesarry?

                  can anyone chime in.. with their success and failures and what they suggest?


                  This is an adopted recipe from Mean Chef. This looks really great to me and can't wait to try it, as I really enjoy Carnitas. Mean Chef word's are: The special ingredient is Pepsi and this is fabulous. You can use carnitas in tortillas, serve like BBQ pork or great at a picinic on rolls.

                  2½ hours | 30 min prep

                  SERVES 6 -8

                  3 lbs pork butt or pork shoulder
                  1 orange, quartered
                  1 teaspoon garlic, chopped
                  1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
                  1 teaspoon black pepper
                  1 cup Pepsi, plus
                  more Pepsi, as needed
                  3/4 cup oil or shortening
                  Fuego spice mix yields 1 cup use 1T
                  1/4 cup paprika
                  2 teaspoons cayenne
                  2 tablespoons salt
                  2 teaspoons white pepper
                  2 tablespoons ground black pepper
                  2 tablespoons garlic granules
                  2 tablespoons chili powder
                  2 tablespoons oregano
                  Agua Negra Marinade yields 3 1/4 cups use 1 cup
                  1 cup soy sauce
                  2 cups pineapple juice
                  2 tablespoons cumin
                  2 teaspoons garlic, minced
                  1/4 cup fresh lime juice
                  1.Fuego spice mix: Combine all ingredients, mixing well.
                  2.You can store in an airtight container for up to six months.
                  3.Agua Negra Marinade: combine all ingredients with a whisk.
                  4.You can store in the refrigerator for two days.
                  5.Carnitas: Trim away excess fat from pork and cut into 3-inch cubes.
                  6.Dust meat with Fuego spice mix and press to adhere well.
                  7.Squeeze juice from oranges into an airtight nonreactive container*, add peels, garlic, pepper, Pepsi and Aqua Negra marinade—mix to combine well.
                  8.Add seasoned meat and refrigerate overnight.
                  9.Remove meat from the marinade (reserve marinade) the next day when you are ready to cook.
                  10.Heat oil/shortening in a large heavy skillet over high heat until fat is smoking; add pork and brown completely on all sides- about 15 minutes.
                  11.Add reserved marinade and simmer for about 2 hours or until pork is tender and dark brown- add additional Pepsi as needed while cooking to keep meat covered.12.Remove meat and chop into 3/4 inch pieces.

                  1. re: lestblight

                    There seems to be two philosophies:
                    - focus on the cooking method, and keep the flavorings to minimum
                    - use a lot of flavorings

                    The highly flavored version may taste great, but whether it should be called carnitas is debatable. It probably is not what you are going to buy from a Michiocan carniceria.

              2. I use Rick Bayless' basic Carnitas recipe, but add some aromatics, like orange peel, peppercorns, and a crumbled bay leaf.....so much for "bayless"...haha...
                The second half of his recipe calls for roasting/frying the pork "dry" (not covered)...I may try that some day by putting the roasting pan in a smokey BBQ.
                Or today, I am currently trying an alternative, by adding one chipotle pepper to the pork, to add some smokeyness, in the oven.