Are you ready for carnitas tonight? These carnitas de cerdo al vapor is an easy stove top preperation that does not require any deep frying. Al vapor translates to the pork being steamed. As it rapidly boils in the covered pot, it is both adding flavor and tenderizing the meat. My mom would use this cooking method for beef as well. A cut of beef with a higher fat content of marbeling works better, in my opnion. Adding the pork lard(manteca) at the end adds more of that traditional flavor, but it optional. The important thing is to yield a crispy exterior on the pork. My favorite salsa for carnitas is salsa cruda. A quick tomatillo salsa blended fresh, no cooking required!
Carnitas de Cerdo Al Vapor-Easy Carnitas
Easy, stove top, one skillet pork carnitas!
- 2 1/2 pounds pork butt/shoulder sliced into 2 inch chunks
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- 4 cups of water
- 1/2 white onion
- 3-4 cloves of garlic skins on
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 tablespoons of pork manteca optional
For Salsa Cruda
- 5-6 to matillos washed and roughly chopped
- 2 serrano peppers chopped
- Handful of cilantro chopped
- Salt to taste
- Season the pork with salt and pepper. Transfer to a deep skillet ot dutch oven-style pot. Pour in the water to one side of pork. Add the onion, garlic and bay leaves. Cover and heat on high.
- After about 5 minutes, the water should come to a boil. Remove lid from pot and skim the foam off the top and best you can. Reduce heat to medium and continue cooking for 1 hour.
- While the pork cooks, prepare your salsa cruda. Add all of the ingredients to the blender. Blend on high until smooth. Taste for salt. Pour into serving dish. Set aside.
- After 1 hour, remove lid from carnitas. Stir, cover again and cook for another 15 minutes. Uncover, add pork manteca and fry the carnitas for a few minutes. Remove from heat.
Transfer carnitas to a serving dish that has a cover. Let sit while you heat up your tortillas for tacos! Garnish tacos with salsa and guacamole!
This easy stove top preperation for carnitas can also be used for beef or chicken. Of course it works best with a fattier cut of beef, such as short ribs or ribeye. And chicken thighs work better than chicken breast.
A fresh guacamole that includes cilantro, lime and salt to taste is a must for these tacos!
Does your supermarket carry the uncooked corn tortillas yet? if not, ask for them! They are the closest thing to the tortillas produced in Mexico.