Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Traditional Old-School Carnitas are the BEST


Today's recipe is a classic old-school rendition of carnitas prepared traditionally: cooked slowly in lard. You can find lots of recipe online using this method. Here, I've been inspired by my dad's preparation of carnitas and by this recipe from a video channel that I really love here. This is also the second carnitas recipe here on 'Confessions' and it is a bit more work than the previously posted one but oh my! Are they glorious!


Chunks of trimmed pork butt (aka, pork shoulder) are cooked slowly in a good amount of pork lard that has had a cup of water added to it. The water keeps the oil from getting too hot, allowing the pork time to cook before browning. As the water and added orange juice evaporate, lots of tiny bubbles break the surface. By the time the water has fully evaporated, the inside of the pork is cooked and it's time for the lard to work it's magic on the outside, giving the carnitas their familiar, gloriously golden brown crust. The combination of tender moist pork encased by a crunchy, bacon-like exterior is by far my favorite taco filling. Actually, truth be told, this is probably my favorite meat period.


Lard has gotten a bad rap over the years. But like all things, when part of a balanced diet low in processed foods and sugars, a little lard now and then adds similar amounts of good fats as does say a serving of avocado or olive oil. A Washington Post story cited that if it's part of a healthy diet, it's good. If you have a bad, unhealthy diet, then adding lard is definitely not a good thing.


Adding the oranges is very much like braising pork Cuban-style for the traditional cubano sandwich. The milk acts as a tenderizer, a secret I learned while growing up watching dad make his carnitas which, by the way, were always exceptionally tender. The beer gives the pork another layer of flavor, while the cinnamon, which pairs so well with pork, adds warm, earthy tones.


Removing the pork first to a strainer then onto a paper towel lined plate will help pull out excess lard.


Look at these tender bits of meat. So yummy with their crunchy outsides. Don't be afraid of this recipe. If you are craving good old-fashioned authentic carnitas, this is the recipe to try.



AUTHENTIC MEXICAN CARNITAS

Serves 8
Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 2 hours

adapted from howtocookmexicanfood

INGREDIENTS
____________________

2 pounds pork butt
2 pounds pork lard
1 cup water
2 medium oranges, washed and halved
4 cloves garlic, peeled
½ medium onion, peeled
1 large stick Mexican cinnamon stick or 2 small regular cinnamon sticks
4 bay leaves
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon dried whole Mexican oregano, crushed between palms
1 teaspoon dried thyme
1 cup evaporated milk
½ cup beer (nothing too hoppy)
16 corn tortillas

For Garnish:
lime wedges
chopped onions
chopped cilantro
salsa
queso fresco
____________________

DIRECTIONS

1. Trim excess fat from pork butt then cut into 3 inch chunks. Set aside.
2. Add lard and water to a cold stock pot or dutch oven. Turn heat to medium high. 
Once lard has liquified, carefully add meat.
3. Squeeze the juice from the oranges directly into the pot of meat; add the spent oranges to the pot. 
4. Simmer on medium, uncovered, for one hour. Stir the meat every 15 minutes to ensure it doesn't stick to the bottom of the pot.
5. Add the garlic, onion, cinnamon, bay leaves, salt, oregano, thyme, milk and beer to the pot. Stir well to combine. Continue simmering on medium heat, uncovered, for an additional hour. Stir meat at least every 20 minutes to make sure it's cooking evenly. 
6. Use a slotted spoon to remove meat to a strainer, then place on a paper towel-lined plate to cool enough to handle.
7. Once cool enough to handle, rough chop meat.
8. Warm tortillas, fill with meat then add a squeeze of lime over the meat. Add optional garnishes.


Until next time my friends! Hope you have a great week and plan on making these carnitas this weekend. You won't regret it! 
xo, Ani



102 comments:

Tiffany said...

Wow, I haven't made carnitas in a long time but this looks amazing! I have never cooked in lard and I had no idea you could buy it like that, but I imagine it will taste really good. Can I ask where you shop for your pork? We live in San Diego as well; )

Anita L Arambula said...

Hi Tiffany, I usually get my pork at Northgate Market (http://www.northgatemarkets.com/our-stores/) because I can pick up the pork lard there too. Sometimes I'll pick it up at Vons or Sprouts if it's on sale. At these stores, it's usually labeled as pork shoulder or picnic roast and at Northgate, it's usually labeled as pork butt. It's all the same cut.

Mimi | Mimi Avocado said...

I love carnitas and have always wonder "how do they do that?". Thanks for this post! I would never have guessed! Can't wait to try it!

Anita L Arambula said...

Oh! I hope you do. They are simply delicious.

mkemper said...

Have been wanting to try to make carnitas at home for a while. I get them at my favorite restaurant and they are divine. They also fry them after cooking them. Have you ever done this or do you think it's unnecessary after cooking in lard? I love the crunch it gives the pork :)

Anonymous said...

Trying this recipe tonight. I remember stopping at a little market with my mom when I was younger and we would get a huge container of their carnitas to go, but we never tried to make them ourselves.I just started it and my house smells amazing already. My husband's friends heard I was going to try to make it and they all invited themselves to dinner tonight. Lol.

Anita L Arambula said...

I hope your carnitas turn out wonderful! This is by far my favorite way to make them. Enjoy! :)

Anita L Arambula said...

MKemper -- yes, after chopping, you can feel free to toss into a skillet with a bit of oil or lard to crisp up even more if you like additional crunch. :)

Chris E said...

I added a little coffee to mine. Gave it a nice bottom end.

Anita L Arambula said...

Great idea, Chris! I'll have to try that.

Anonymous said...

Can you make this in a cast iron pot?

Anita L Arambula said...

Yes! Cast iron pot is good so long as it's at least 4 quart, preferably 6 quart. I use a 5 quart Lodge enameled cast iron.

Camara Scremin said...

Wondering if you can start this on the stove but move to a large heavy roasting pan and finish in the oven? I will ultimately need a very large quantity and that might make it a bit easier. Do these re-heat well? Thank you!

Anita L Arambula said...

Camara, I've not done it but I think it will work fine. The main thing, though, is that it the meat remain uncovered as it cooks down. covering it would mean the meat steams and that will keep it from getting that yummy caramelization. Leaving it uncovered in the oven while it pops and sizzles will make a mess to clean up (plus the enclosed space might again cause steaming). I've made 4 pounds and my dad has made as much as 6 pounds in one large commercial sized stockpot (like the kind you find at Smart & Final or the kind used to steam tamales in) on the stovetop. He's even been known to have two of those going for a party that feeds an army!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for posting this recipe. Am making carnitas for the 1st time and will follow the recipe to the T. Will let you know how it turns out.......... Happy Cinco De Mayo!

The Dooley Crew said...

HANDS down the best carnitas I have EVER had. Thanks! SO tender, flavorful... I will have to make these again despite the intensive cooking process.

Anita L Arambula said...

@The Dooley Crew -- You made my day! So glad you enjoyed the recipe! :) Happy eating! Ani

dh said...

When do you add the cinnamon sticks? Did I miss it in the recipe???

Anita L Arambula said...

dh: whoops! No one else has caught that, including me when I transcribed my recipe! The cinnamon goes in when you add the bay leaves and other spices. Amending recipe now. Thank you for the catch!!

Mark said...

one question. i made this as directed, and the minute the evaporated milk was added, it curdled. are you sure the ingredient list is in the correct order? I cant image how dairy added to fat would do anything but curdle.
mark

Anita L Arambula said...

Hi Mark, Yes, the order is correct. I have never had the milk curdle on me before. I can only think that perhaps the meat was cooking on too high of heat. It should be a gentle simmer. Also, the milk curdling won't affect the outcome adversely. Whether the milk is homogenized or not is not the reason for it's addition. It's added to help tenderize the meat so it's OK if it separates. If the look of it bothers you, however, feel free to leave it out next time. I've successfully made these carnitas without the milk when I've not had it in my pantry. Hope they turned out tasty to you despite the curdled milk! :)

James (The New Chicken Man) said...

I am following your recipe to the T. I am however trying it sous vide style. Cooking at 200 degrees. Will let you know how it turns out.

Anita L Arambula said...

James, I look forward to hearing how these came out for you. I've never cooked sous vide style before!

Chris Swanson said...

I was wondering how to prevent the lard/water mix from "jumping" out of the pot and getting all over. his happened just as the lard had fully melted. I only had the stove on med at this point. I am using a ceramic pot if that is of any consequence. Thanks!

Anonymous said...

What temperature is "medium heat?"

Anita L Arambula said...

@Anon -- RE: medium heat. Well, that's a hard one to quantify in regards to specifics since no two ovens are a like. Since we're simmering here, what you want to look for is gentle bubbles. So you'd set your stove dial to a medium position and watch to see how rapid the bubbles are... no bubbles means you're at a low setting, some tiny bubbles you're at a medium low setting, a gentle stream of bubbles you're at medium. lots of bubbles you're at medium high and rapid big bubbles your at high. I hope that helps!

Rosie G. said...

My grew up eating pork carnitas but I didn't know how to make them. I followed your recipe and they came out sooooo good! I told my family all about it and they want me to make more! Thank you for sharing this wonderful and delicious recipe and now I can continue the tradition on to my daughters.

Anita L Arambula said...

@ROSIE --- I'm so glad they turned out well and that they live up to your fond memories of eating carnitas while growing up! Thank you for leaving a comment and letting me know the recipe was a success for you!

Cloudjuicer said...

ANITA: We are making this now to test and hopefully later for a big group. Whey you made 4 pounds and your father 6 pounds, how did you increase the other ingredients? Did you simply double everything? When you make this dish do you follow your recipe to a T or do you simply wing it? If you wing it, what are the things you want to pay the most attention to? Thanks!

Anita L Arambula said...

This recipe is super forgiving. In fact, most of the time that I make it, I don't follow an exact recipe. If you're doubling up the meat, the main thing is to make sure that you have a big enough pot and enough liquid to cover the meat initially for that first half hour. I'd double up on everything (except the one cup water in the initial lard melting, I don't see a need to add more it's just to keep the lard from getting too hot so the meat has time to cook before it starts to brown), making note after the first time to adjust anything you didn't like. Maybe the cinnamon will be too pronounced or the garlic to forward or maybe the oregano flavor isn't strong enough. It's really quite a forgiving recipe and so easy to customize to your own flavor profile. The main thing is the cooking process, the lard and water at the beginning and somewhere along the line some citrus to brighten and sweeten the flavor and the milk to tenderize. Good luck! Let me know how it comes out. Also, if you're making it for a big crowd you could, after the meat is cooked, remove to a sheet pan, break it up with a fork, add back a ladle or two of the liquid and put the tray under a broiler to give the meat some crispy edges. Totally delicious this way!

Anonymous said...

How about making this in a slow cooker? What (if any) adjustments would you make?

Anonymous said...

can't find pork lard can I use beef lard?

Anita L Arambula said...

I wouldn't use this recipe for the slow cooker. I have another carnitas recipe listed under PORK in the recipes tab that might work.

Anita L Arambula said...

If you can't find pork lard, then sub it with vegetable shortening (like Crisco). Beef lard will taint the flavor of the pork. Vegetable shortening is more neutral.

Anonymous said...

Hi
I am making carnitas using this recipe wanted to see if using table salt would it 1 1/2 tablespoons? Also could you throw in some skin with the meat

Winter Spring said...

Do I have to cut the meat into pieces? Can I put a whole pork butt in and it cook that way? Mine was on the bone.

Anita L Arambula said...

Hi. Yes, it works best if you cut the meat up into chunks. You can leave some meat on the bone if you like and cook the bone along with the rest if you like (I cook it and give the bone to my furbaby).

Anita L Arambula said...

Yes and yes! Let me know how it turns out. :)

Anita L Arambula said...

Here's a good reference. Hope it helps clarify: http://www.smartkitchen.com/resources/cooking-appendices/reference-materials/heat-temperature-charts/medium-heat-1

Unknown said...

Can you save the lard afterwards?

Anita L Arambula said...

Yes! And it's tasty! I use it for frying until it's all gone. Normally, I keep a small container of it on the counter, no more than I can use in a day or two and keep the rest in the fridge until my little container needs to be refilled. I just strain it through cheesecloth before putting it into a glass mason jar.

Anonymous said...

Hi,
I'm making about 4 pounds maybe 5 at the most would you double up on everything or just add a little more then the recipe calls for? I'm using pork butt and belly with skin

Anonymous said...

This recipe looks amazing. Hoping that the lard I bought that comes in bricks in the baking aisle of the grocery store can be used in place of pork lard.?

Anita L Arambula said...

It's not my first choice, but yes, you can use it. It just doesn't have the same flavor of the pork lard but will do the trick. :)

Anita L Arambula said...

I think you emailed me this question, yes?

Anita L Arambula said...

You could also use Crisco...

melissa alvarado said...

Can I substitute Mexican Coca Cola for the beer?

Anita L Arambula said...

Hi Melissa. Yes, you can. It's a different flavor but equally delicious!

Unknown said...

This is the second time in one week I cooked Carnitas. The first required only salt, garlic and onion and it was fantastic - very authentic. This recipe takes away from the natural flavors. Just too much stuff!! Thumbs down.

Ani L. Arambula said...

Thanks for your input. Sorry you didn't like how they turned out. I have a recipe for the simpler way here, too, which I love just as well. Both ways have their merits, in my opinion. This particular way is especially great for a cubano.

Anonymous said...

This looks great! I am looking to make this for a party. Would this dish still retain its flavor and texture if cooked 2 of 3 hours before (for tacos) or is this best served fresh made?

Ani L. Arambula said...

Totally! You could even cook it the day before. Cook the meat for the first two hours or until tender as instructed. Remove to a paper towel lined baking sheet and cool completely before storing it in the refrigerator in an airtight container. The day of the party, simply remove the meat from the fridge and let it rest on counter for 25 minutes or so to take the chill off. Heat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Tear, shred or cut the meat into bite-sized pieces, spread evenly over 1-2 large baking sheets and roast in the oven until heated through and just starting to crisp up on the edges, about 12-15 minutes or to taste. Serve as soon as possible once heated to liking.

Amy Jo said...

My pork never browned?! Just stayed white/gray in color. What would cause this? It was very tender and started to just fall apart in the lard mixture, the flavor is great. Just not pleasing to the eye...

Anonymous said...

Thank you for the info on making it ahead! I am one person cooking for a group of 60 with staggered times of arrival. Knowing that I can make this the day ahead just saved my life and my budget. I'm going to cook a few batches the day before and a few batches the day of, great to know I can warm the meat as needed.

Ani L. Arambula said...

Two things I can think of: first, water/lard ratio might have been off. Too much water. Second, and most likely, heat in stove wasn't quite high enough. My suggestion for next time, turn heat up to medium-high the last 20 minutes or so of cooking so that the lard is bubbling and the meat is crackling and popping from being fried. You will need to stand watch to ensure the meat doesn't burn. As the pieces turn golden, remove them from the pot. This should remedy the problem.

Paul Fink said...

The recipe and your description are great.
Thank you.
My only question is why the two cooking session?
An hour with oj and then an hour with spices, milk, etc.

Why not add everything at the beginning.

Ani L. Arambula said...

Honestly, not all the liquid fits in my 6 quart dutch oven. Cooking in two steps allows for the orange juice and the water to bubble away. If you're pot is big enough, I don't see why not add everything at once and see how that works for you. Since I've been making them this way, I've always done it the two steps. Give it a whirl adding it all at once and come back and let us know how it worked out for you. :)

Paul Fink said...

Will do, thanks for the reply.

Anonymous said...

Following to a tee except adding a alcoholic root beer instead of beer.
10 lb.butt

Autumn said...

I just made this recipe on Friday for a family gathering. Everyone there said hands down they were the best carnitas they'd ever eaten!! So many requests for the recipe. They were still talking about it two days later and asking for the recipe. Definitely a crowd pleaser. Thank you for the recipe!

Ani L. Arambula said...

Let me know how it goes. :)

Ani L. Arambula said...

You made my day! There are couple comments from folks who hated it without ever having made it which is disheartening. So hearing from readers who took the time to make it, then come back and comment means the world. I'm glad your family loved it.

Anonymous said...

Made it tonight: 4# of pork shoulder, 2# of pork lard. About 3 oranges. The smell after the 1.5 hr mark with the oranges and the cinnamon was heavenly!

The guy at the Mexican market insisted I use a 1/4 bottle of Mexican coke. I did that instead of the beer. Worked just fine.

Made it outside in a Le Creuset 7.5 qt dutch oven, over a propane burner: worked perfectly. Easy to maintain the temperature.

Carnitas were fabulous. No complaints. Although I do recommend keeping some big tin cans to dispose of the used lard. I was able to spoon off about a pint of the lard to reuse (used a little to heat the tortillas).

Thanks so much for the recipe. I will be making this many more times in the future.

Anonymous said...

I made these about 6 months ago and they were terrific. I was introduced to Carinitas in Leon Mexico by a good friend from there. It reminded me of the good time we had with Jose. Thank you.

Bevin Armstrong said...

This was absolutely delicious. I'd previously made a crock pot version which was good, but this was truly amazing. The flavors meld together so well. My only problem was some of the meat was a bit dry (used pork loin, happened to be cheaper than the butt). Next time I'll simply reduce cooking time. Thanks so much for this incredibly versatile meat! We've used it for traditional carnitas tacos, & also wrapped in a tortilla with black bean, egg & cheese for breakfast burritos. :)
Can't say enough good things about this. I also used the leftover lard to fry bits of the meat & the eggs. Again, it was just SO GOOD. :)

Anonymous said...

I made these last night and I would have to say that this is the best carnitas recipe I have found. The flavor was on point and they were very moist. I ate way more than I should have, but I just couldn't stop. My pork began to fall apart during the cooking, so I didn't get the nicely browned chunks of meat that I was aiming for. I trimmed up a nine pound shoulder, so I more or less doubled the other ingredients. I think there may have been too much liquid/lard in the pot, so they were falling apart before the liquids had evaporated. However, after placing them in a pan with a little reserved fat they browned up very nicely. I think with this recipe and a little practice I may finally be able to achieve carnitas perfection. Thank you so much for sharing!

Ani L. Arambula said...

Yes, the initial liquids was generous in their amounts to accommodate some fluctuation in the amount of meat. But glad they turned out crispy for you in the oven (that's usually how I reheat them and they get nicely caramelized that way!). So glad you liked the recipe!

Ani L. Arambula said...

Glad you liked the flavors! Yes, pork loin is a bit too lean for the time needed to cook pork butt (aka, cushion meat, pork shoulder, picnic roast). I buy my pork butt at Mexican grocery stores for cheaper than major supermarkets and they sell it as cushion meat at Smart & Final for a good price (though you might have to freeze half of it for another time).

Ani L. Arambula said...

That's great! Love to hear this.

Ani L. Arambula said...

I love using Mexican coke for this! So glad you tried it.

Unknown said...

Hi! I noticed there's no coca cola in this recipe. Any reason or thoughts as to how that might be incorporated and/or affect the final product?

Ani L. Arambula said...

I like the flavor the beer brings. When I add Mexican Coca Cola, I don't add the oranges or the beer. The meat turns out sweeter and the cane sugar in the Mexican coke produces a deeper caramelization. Slightly different recipe with very different results, both equally delicious. I just prefer to avoid all that extra sugar. Hope that helps!

Vanessa Mullen said...

I don't have evaporated milk. Can I use whole milk or cream?

Ani L. Arambula said...

You can use whole milk in place of the evaporated. I have with good success.

Growing up Griffith said...

These were yum! Wish I would have halved the Salt. A little too salty. Will make again.

Ani L. Arambula said...

Yay! Glad you liked the recipe... Sorry it was a little salty for you. Did you use regular salt or kosher? I find regular salt needs to be about half the amount of kosher.

Dan Sexton said...

Great recipe! The flavors were perfect! I cranked the heat a little and watched it close to brown it. Very tender. I served it with homemade corn tortillas, pick de gallo, and refried beans. Thanks for sharing!

Alicia Baker said...

OK, my mouth is totally watering! I've been craving carnitas lately, and just bought my crockpot today. I've also been on the search for the perfect, traditional recipe - thank you for posting your amazing photos! Can't wait to make this - Alicia @www.girlonahike.com

Ani L. Arambula said...

Hi! I've not tested this recipe in a crockpot. A crockpot will not allow the liquid to evaporate. If you try it in one let me know how it turns out.

Ani L. Arambula said...

Hi Dan! Thank you! So glad you liked it!

Kimberly Namen said...

We're making this for dinner tonight!

eaglerockdude said...

I made carnitas last week in my lodge dutch oven, but with no lard. They were great, but were kind of mushy. I also left the lid on. Is leaving the lid off necessary for the right texture. Or was it the mexican sauce i added.

Ani L. Arambula said...

I would definitely try it with the lid off. Keeping it on traps moisture. You want the water to evaporate slowly over the course of the first hour and a half of cooking until the meat is almost cooked through. Eventually all the water evaporates as the fat on the pork renders out. This is the browning step. If you don't have enough fat on the pork to crisp up the meat, remove the meat to a sheet pan in a single layer, pour over a little of any leftover cooking liquid/fat and place under a broiler for a few minutes to brown just before serving.

eaglerockdude said...

I finished my carnitas this morning. I use pork lard and a 5 lb pork shoulder. I left the lid off and the meat browned up nicely. If anything I may have left it cooking too long. I must have put too many oranges cause I can kind of taste that, but other that that they taste good.

Question: on the final stage, would u say once the meet looks a bit brown its time to remove the meet, regardless of how much liquid is left in the pan? I was trying to get the liquid all the way down, but I think that was a bit too long..

Ani L. Arambula said...

Yes, definitely, the amount of browning in the final stage is totally subjective. Once the meat has reached the color you want, go ahead and remove from the pot. Sometimes I only brown on one side so that the other is still tender, giving a variety of texture in the meat.

Jesus Morgan said...

I keep coming back to this recipe! It had a few different techniques than my old man from Mexico City uses, but have you ever thought about adding Coca Cola to the recipe? For an extra sweet carmalization?

Jesus Morgan said...

I keep coming back to this recipe! It had a few different techniques than my old man from Mexico City uses, but have you ever thought about adding Coca Cola to the recipe? For an extra sweet carmalization?

Ani L. Arambula said...

Hi Jesus,

Yes, I have used Mexican Coca-Cola before but for me these days, it's too much added sugar. It does taste delicious that way, I agree. But it definitely sweetens the dish and prefer it more savory. Thanks for coming back, reading and commenting! Happy holidays!

Unknown said...

Have you tried cooking the batch in a copper pot? I've seen an old relative cook a carnitas recipe very similar to yours in the copper vat and they were tp die for.

Winter Spring said...

I've made this recipe many times following recipe to a tee. Delicious. The last time I placed all ingredients at once. Flavors were not as pronounced, but still good. From now on I'll always do it in steps and not be lazy.

Amy Escobar said...

def boil the meat. crunchy goodness.

Amy Escobar said...

Ever made this in an electric pressure cooker before?

whatsreal said...

Thanks for posting this recipe! I am making these for a party for 20 people, where they will be on a buffet table for people to munch on throughout the night - how do you recommend serving them for this type of party? Also, how many pounds of pork would you recommend for 20 people?

Anonymous said...

Where do I find the Pork Lard at? My local grocery store does not carry it. Thanks!

Unknown said...

How can I keep this warm for a buffet lunch? They will be on the line for about 2 hours. I am thinking a crock pot but am worried they will get dried out. Any ideas how to keep the meet crisp and moist?

Nancy Quinn said...

Outstanding! I know this is an older post but OMG a keeper. I had a four pound shoulder so I doubled everything except the milk, cinnamon and bay leaves. I did add a half can of real sugar pepsi, all I had. The last half hour of the summer is when the magic happened. The meat caramelized and got all deep brown and beautiful. By the end it has crisped up along the edges. Yes you have to stir it often during the last 15 minutes so it doesn't burn. We were in heaven! I made a roasted jalapeno cream cheese spread and a salsa with warm tortilla. I cannot imagine any better recipe. Thank you ��

Ani L. Arambula said...

So great to hear! Thank you for letting me know!

Ani L. Arambula said...

That's a good question. I wonder if you put an inch or so of water in the crockpot and put a veggie steamer or maybe sliced carrots or something to keep the meat from touching the liquid would be enough to help create steam to keep them warm without drying them out? You might need to sacrifice crunch for keeping the meat tender but that might work. Let me know if you figured something out that worked for you.

Ani L. Arambula said...

Do you have a local Mexican/Latin market? They would have it. You could also try a traditional butcher shop. I know a meat specialty store here in my county that carries rendered pork fat.

Ani L. Arambula said...

I've taken this for parties and what I do is preheat a dutch oven, then put the carnitas straight from the oven to the dutch oven and straight to the party. They'll keep warm, covered for a good hour or so. As for how much to get, 4 people per pound of cooked meat (3 for bigger eaters). Also, keep in that the meat will render down by about fourth to a third depending on how much fat on the pork. So let's say that for 20 you'd need 5 pounds of cooked meat so I'd start with 6.5-7 pounds of pork butt/shoulder.

Ani L. Arambula said...

I have not. I don't own one. If you try it, let me know how it goes.

Ani L. Arambula said...

No, I haven't. I find the cast iron dutch oven works great for me.