Making Carnitas Tacos

21 Jul

For 4th of July this year, carnitas tacos:

Starting the afternoon before with an 8-pound bone-in pork shoulder (and some pork belly for good measure):


Packed together to tightly fill a dutch oven, with onions, garlic, fennel, cilantro, and sliced oranges, then added just enough milk to fill in the cracks for braising (after wedging strips of pork belly in every open crevice to keep this tightly enough packed to render out the copious amounts of pork fat and allow the pork to almost confit, inspired by this Serious Eats carnitas article):


After braising, covered, in the oven at 275 for about six hours (flipping the shoulder about once an hour):


The next day, after trimming off the largest chunks of fat, shredding the pork, spreading it in a thin layer over a baking sheet, salting it, and putting it under the broiler for about 5 minutes on each side it crisped up nicely. Carnitas!


If I’m going to go to all that effort on the pork, I have to make tortillas (probably 60 or 70 of them):


Part of a bountiful back yard party spread:


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