You may have had pork pibil at your favourite Mexican restaurant: it’s a classic Yucatán dish of pork, slow-cooked in achiote, a paste made from annatto seeds, from which the dish gets its lovely colour. Achiote paste is easily available online, and once you have it, this dish will be a staple in your repertoire – it’s so easy to put together.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 3 hours
- 1 onion, roughly chopped
- 6 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano (Mexican if you have it)
- 8 cloves
- 250ml orange juice (ideally freshly squeezed)
- 2 limes, juice only
- 50g achiote paste
- 2 teaspoons sea salt
- 800g free-range pork shoulder, diced
- 1⁄2 red onion, very thinly sliced
- 1 lime, juice only
- Chopped fresh coriander
- Tortillas and sour cream
Preheat the oven to 140°C fan/160°C/gas 2.
Tip the onion, garlic, cumin, oregano, cloves, citrus juice, achiote paste and salt into a blender or food processor and blitz until smooth.
In a small deep roasting tin or lidded casserole dish, mix the pork shoulder with the spice paste. Cover tightly with foil or the lid, then transfer to the oven and cook for 3 hours.
Meanwhile, mix the very thinly sliced red onion with the lime juice and set aside for 3 hours, stirring occasionally. (The acid in the lime juice will turn the onions a beautiful bright pink by the time the pork is ready.)
Once cooked, remove the foil or lid and shred the pork while hot. Serve with the pink pickled onions, chopped coriander, warm tortillas and sour cream.
Note: This dish isn’t at all spicy, so it’s a good one for kids, and can be easily made ahead, frozen and defrosted in portions.
Extracted from: The Roasting Tin Around the World – Global One Dish Dinners by Rukmini Iyer (Square Peg). Photography by David Loftus.