Come On Up To The House

Cuban Pork & Black Beans

I love my slow cooker. I know it isn’t the best way to cook things, but it is really convenient. I found this recipe in my Cooking Light last year, and have made it several times. The kids seem to really enjoy it as well, which is a bonus. I leave out the spicy component so they will eat it and Paul & I spice ours after it is cooked. I usually make this exactly as is seen here, but this time I took some shortcuts to make things go a little quicker. Both are delicious and easy.


Cuban Pork & Beans

4 lb pork shoulder, trimmed off fat
4 slices bacon, chopped
2 3/4 cups chicken broth
1 cup orange juice, from concentrate
1/2 cup chopped cilantro (stems & leaves)
1 medium orange, quartered
1 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper, divided
1 pound dried black beans
1 1/2 cups chopped onion, divided
6 garlic cloves, pressed
1 tbsp dried oregano
2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 bay leaf

1 1/2 cups chopped tomato
1/2 cup onion
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

Heat up a large saute pan on high with high sides. Cook the chopped bacon until crispy. Remove the bacon from the pan and reserve. Swirl the bacon fat and add in trimmed pork shoulder to brown on every side. This should take about 6 – 8 minutes.

While the meat is browning, add chicken broth, orange juice, cilantro, orange and 3/4 tsp salt & 3/4 tsp pepper to a blender and blend well. Pour liquid through a sieve and throw away the solids. Reserve the liquid.

Once meat is done browning, add into the slow cooker. Pour dried black beans around meat (you don’t need to soak or precook the beans). Check to make sure the black beans don’t have any rocks or pebbles in them. I tend to find one per bag.

Saute chopped onions and garlic for 1 minutes in the saute pan that pork shoulder was removed from. Add in oregano, paprika, cumin and bay leaf and let cook for 1 minute. Pour in the reserved orange juice mixture and bring to a boil. Pour over pork shoulder and cover. Let cook on low for 6-8 hours.

Serve with chop tomatoes, onions and cilantro. I leave these in separate serving dishes so they can be sprinkled on the top according to taste. Serve with white basmati rice.

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