SLOW-COOKED PORK BARBACOA
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon ancho chili powder (or other single chili powder, not a blend)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
5-pound bone-in pork shoulder*
1 onion, quartered
10 cloves garlic, peeled
3 dried bay leaves
Adjust the rack in the oven to a lower level so the roast will easily slide in. Heat the oven to 350 degrees.
In a small bowl, combine the salt, chili powder, cinnamon and cloves. Pat the pork dry and generously season all over with the salt mixture. Cut a large piece (about 24 inches) of heavy-duty foil and place in a roasting pan. Add the roast, onions, garlic and bay leaves and wrap everything up tightly in the foil. Roast for 3 1/2 hours.
Remove from the oven and let rest, still wrapped in the foil, for 30 minutes. The foil will keep all the moisture and flavors in the packet and the shoulder will braise as it cools, creating very tender and juicy meat. Discard the onion, garlic and bay leaves before shredding the meat. Serves 12.
*Instead of Boston butt, you could use the picnic part of the shoulder, or use the whole shoulder if you have one. Just trim the fat down to 1/8-inch or so.
“Pure Pork Awesomeness: Totally Cookable Recipes from Around the World” by Kevin Gillespie with David Joachim (Andrews McMeel Publishing, $29.99)