Cubans love their pork and why not as they are masters at preparing it any which way possible. This is an easy recipe with lots of flavor. The chops are cooked till tender then shredded and fried until crispy. It’s delicious over white rice and beans and leftovers can be enjoyed in a traditional Cuban sandwich.
• 4 cups water or enough to cover the pork
• 1 sprig fresh thyme
• 8 black peppercorns
• 1 tablespoon garlic powder, or to taste
• 1 tablespoon onion powder
• 1 teaspoon salt
• 1 ½-2 pounds boneless pork chops
• 2 limes, juiced and separated
• salt to taste
• 2 tablespoons olive oil
• 1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
• 3 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
• 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
1. In a large saucepan, bring water to a boil and add thyme, peppercorn, garlic and onion powder, juice of one lime and salt. Mix well.
2. Add pork chops and reduce heat to a simmer for 1 ½-2 hours, until meat is very tender. Check periodically and add more water when necessary to ensure pork chops remain covered.
3. Let the pork chops rest in the broth for 30 minutes.
4. Transfer pork chops to a plate, remove excess fat and shred.
5. Heat large frying pan with olive oil and add shredded pork. Fry until crisp, about 5 minutes. Add sliced onion and garlic and continue to cook until the onion is slightly crisp, about 5-7 minutes. Add remaining juice of one lime, mix though and toss with cilantro. Serve over white rice and beans or enjoy as part of a late night Cuban sandwich.
Elizabeth Carrion, a Dominican, co-founded Mi Cocina, a New Jersey-based catering service that also offers cooking classes, with her sister, Ana Martinez. Follow her on Twitter: @micocinalatina and visit her website micocina-latina.com.