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February 2016

I’m gonna go out on a limb and speak for carnivores everywhere by saying that it’s nearly impossible to resist slow-roasted pork. In general. In life. When you combine the words “slow” with “roast”, it triggers an instinctive reaction at the salivary glands, and conjures images of juicy tender meat that falls over and apart at the threat of a fork.

I mean, am I right or am I right?!

Today on the blog and fresh off the YouTube upload, I bring you my recipe for slow-roasted pork shoulder, or what’s called Pernil in Puerto Rico. This recipe is really easy and really delicious. Just a couple things to keep in mind:

  1. For the best result, marinade your roast overnight one day before you cook it to soak those flavors deep in.
  2. A rule of thumb for slow roasting is 1:1:275 which means:

    ⇒ 1 hour for every 1 pound of meat cooked at 275° F ⇐

    Easy rule to follow and doesn’t require a ton of math. For my roast, since it was approximately 6 pounds, I cooked it for about 6 hours total.

  3. You’ll need a sturdy large covered pot or deep pan, large enough to fit your roast comfortably. I strongly recommend an enameled cast iron roasting pan like a 9 qt. Le Creuset for roasts of 5 lbs up to 8 lbs.

It’s kinda hard to mess up this roast so if you do, well then, I’m not sure what to tell you. Ha! Just kidding… I can guarantee that your roast will end up juicy and tender, and you’ll have the perfect filling for your tacos, pulled-pork bbq sandwiches – basically, anything you decide to eat should include this slow-roasted pork!

So without further ado: Slow Roasted Pernil!

Total prep: 15 min

Marinade time: 6 hrs-24 hrs

Total cook time: 1 hour per pound (for example, 6 hrs for 6 lb roast)

Serves: a lot of hungry people (for 6 lb roast, will feed about 10 people)

Ingredients:

  • 5-8 lb pork shoulder (aka pork butt) roast, bone-in and with skin (this is muy importante!)
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • juice of one lemon
  • sea salt or kosher salt to taste
  • 1 TB pepper
  • 1 TB dry oregano
  • 1 TB cumin
  • 1/2 head of garlic, minced
    1. Remove your roast from its packaging and pat it dry with a paper towel. Place your roast on a cutting board. With a very sharp slicing or chefs knife, pierce the roast and cut various small slits all over, about four inches apart and about 3 inches deep into the meat.
    2. Pour olive oil over roast and rub evenly all over, on both the meat side and the skin side. Place the roast into your roasting pan. Squeeze the lemon juice onto the roast. Next, add liberal amounts of salt and rub evenly on the meat. (For my 6 lb. roast, I added approximately 3 TB of salt.) Add the pepper, oregano and cumin as well, and rub evenly over roast. Make sure you get your ingredients into the slits on the roast to infuse that flavor deep inside.
    3. Add your minced garlic, and massage over roast. Again, make sure you get garlic into those slits so the flavor sinks in.
    4. Cover your roast and refrigerate for about 6 hours or more, up to 24. I strongly recommend marinating overnight the day before. The longer you marinate it, the better.
    5. After it has been marinating and before you cook it, preheat your oven to 275° F. Remove the roast from the refrigerator and place it into the oven, SKIN SIDE DOWN AND COVERED. Let it roast for about half of your entire cooking time.**Remember the rule of thumb above: if you have a 6 lb roast, your total cooking time will be about 6 hours; if your roast is 8 lbs, you’ll cook it for a total of 8 hours.**

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      time to flip it skin-side-UP!
    6. After the first half of the cooking time, flip the roast over to the SKIN SIDE UP AND leave it UNCOVERED, and finish roasting in the oven for the remaining half of the total cook time.
    7. When the total cook time is complete, remove your roast from the oven, cover and let it rest and cool for about 30 minutes in room temperature. Your roast should be pulling away from the bone cleanly and should pull apart easily with a fork. YES, A FORK – NO KNIVES REQUIRED!
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slow roasted glory!!

And that’s it – a bit of hog heaven, literally. Enjoy this with your favorite side dishes at your next family dinner, or in a roll as a pulled-pork sandwich, or maybe in tacos with some cilantro, cabbage and fresh squeezed lime. Any way you slice it – er, pull it – you cannot go wrong. Hope you enjoy – let me know how yours turns out in the comments!

Bon appetit!

♥ – G2GS

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