Carnitas with Pico de Gallo

The best American name for this vegetable would probably be “Mexican green tomato”, but they actually taste nothing like regular tomatoes, In fact, the tomatillo is not a tomato at all. The tomatillo has a tart, lemony flavor that is enhance when cooked (especially roasted) and is an excellent base for salsas. While salsa (salsa verde) is the most popular way to enjoy tomatillo, they can be used in other ways. Tomatillos contain high amounts of vitamin A&C. Tomatillos are our #2 sales item!

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Ingredients:

1 Tbsp olive oil
6 lbs boneless pork shoulder
1 cup ground cumin
4 dried New Mexico chiles, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 onion, quartered
6 cloves garlic, halved
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
6 cups water
6 tomatoes, chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 tomatillos, husked and chopped
2 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
1/3 cup lime juice
1 Tbsp salt
1/4 tsp ground black pepper

Instructions:

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Sear the pork in the hot oil until browned on all sides, about 10 minutes. Place into a slow cooker along with the cumin, New Mexico chiles, quartered onion, garlic, and 1 minced jalapeno pepper. Pour in the water, cover, and cook on High for 6 to 8 hours, then reduce heat to Low and cook until the pork is tender and easily shredded, 12 to 16 hours more. Once cooked, remove the pork and vegetables to a large bowl and shred finely with two forks. Mix in enough cooking liquid to moisten the meat to your taste.

Prepare the pico de gallo 2 to 6 hours before the carnitas will be ready. Combine the tomatoes, onion, tomatillos, and 2 minced jalapeno peppers in a mixing bowl. Season with lime juice, salt, and pepper. Mix well, and refrigerate until ready to serve.

Serves 10.

By Jamie Lynne