posted on Mar, 29 2004 @ 03:59 PM
For the recado marinade:
3 tablespoons achiote (annatto) seeds [buy achiote]
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon whole allspice berries [buy allspice]
1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano, or substitute 2 teaspoons European oregano [buy Mexican oregano]
6 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon kosher salt
Juice of 1/2 orange
Juice of 1/2 grapefruit
1/4 cup lime juice
For the roast pork:
5-6 pounds of pork shoulder roast, preferably in 2 pieces, bone-in
1 large white onion
3 or 4 banana leaves, or one package frozen leaves, completely thawed
Several teaspoons vegetable oil for moistening banana leaves
Make the recado:
In a spice grinder, grind the achiote seed, black pepper, cumin, allspice, and oregano to a fine powder. Achiote can be quite resilient, so it may
take a several minutes to accomplish this step.
Mash the garlic (using either a garlic press or a mortar and pestle) to a fine paste. Add the mashed garlic to the to the spice powder.
Add the salt and citrus juices and stir to combine thoroughly. The result should be a lose paste. If it seems too dry, add water, a tablespoon at a
time, to loosen it.
Marinate the pork overnight:
Make small gashes all over the pork with the tip of a sharp knife.
Spread the recado evenly all over the pork. Massage the recado into the gashes made in the previous step.
Place the pork in glass or ceramic dishes, cover and refrigerate for 8 to 24.
Prepare the pork for the oven:
Preheat the oven to 325F.
Slice onion in to thin rounds.
Lay out the banana leaves. Remove the thick center stem from each leaf.
Brush the leaves with vegetable oil.
Place a piece of pork on the banana leaves. Note: if you have two pieces of meat, wrap them separately.
Place a layer of onions on top of the pork.
Wrap banana leaves around the pork. Tie with kitchen string.
Repeat for the other piece of pork, if necessary.
Roast the pork:
Place wrapped pork in a large dutch oven. Add one cup of water and cover tightly.
Bake for 3 to 4 hours. If your cuts of pork are shaped like the ones shown here, that is to say only a few inches thick, roast for closer to 3 hours.
For more compact--and thus slower cooking--cuts, roast for closer to 4 hours.
Remove from oven and let rest for at least 1/2 hour.
Remove the pork packages from the dutch oven. Save the liquid that has accumulated.
Unwrap the pork. When it is cool enough to handle, shred the meat with your fingers, removing any large pieces of fat residue.
Moisten the meat with a few tablespoons of the reserved liquid.
The meat is now ready for making tacos, filling enchiladas or empanadas, or whatever else you desire
[Edited on 3-4-2004 by SE7EN]