Aug 16, 2017

Carnitas Quesadillas

·         4-5 lbs Pork Butt or Shoulder trimmed and cut      into large chunks
·         2 TBL Canola or Vegetable Oil
·         1 TBL Kosher Salt
·         1 tsp Fresh Ground Pepper
·         1 TBL Dried Oregano 
·         1 TBL Ground Cumin
·         1 Large Brown or White Onion, cut into        wedges
·         6 Cloves Garlic, Smashed
·         2 Limes, Juiced
·         2 Large Oranges, Juiced
·         2-4 cups Low Sodium Chicken Stock (or    enough to cover the meat while braising 
·         2 Bay Leaves
·         3 Sprigs Cilantro

      2 Cups Shredded Monterey Jack Cheese
      8 Flour Tortillas
      ½ Cup Steamed Corn Kernels
      ½ Cup Diced Red Bell Pepper)
      1 tbsp Canola or Vegetable Oil
      ¼ Cup Thinly Sliced Scallions
      Salt and pepper
      Fresh Cilantro, Finely Chopped (optional garnish)
      1 Cup Sour Cream, For Garnsih

Preheat the oven to 400 F
After the pork has been cleaned, trimmed and bone has been removed, season generously all around with salt and pepper.
Heat a large dutch oven to a medium high temperature, add the oil, then add the pork pieces and sear on all sides until a nice crust forms.  Next, add the onions and garlic, plus a little bit of the chicken stock to deglaze the pan, scraping up all the browned bits on the bottom.  Now add the cumin and oregano, cook until fragrant.  Next add the orange juice, lime juice, bay leaf, cilantro sprigs, remaining chicken stock, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil. 
Cover and transfer to the oven for 2 ½-3 hours.

Remove pork and shred with two forks (DO NOT DISCARD THE LIQUID!) Ladle left over, strained liquid over the shredded pork, and set aside. (Can be made up to 3 days ahead of time)

Preheat griddle to 375 F.

Lay out the tortillas. Divide the cheese between the tortillas, scattering evenly across half of each tortilla. Top with pork carnitas, corn, diced red pepper, scallions, and more cheese. Season to taste with pepper and salt. Fold the tortillas in half.

Brush the griddle or griddle pan lightly with oil. Add as many quesadillas as will fit in the pan. Cook until nicely browned on one side then flip over the folded edge. Cook the other side until browned, then remove from pan. Tip: Keep cooked quesadillas warm in a very low oven. Keep then in spread out in a single layer so they stay crisp.

Serve immediately, garnished with cilantro and a dollop of sour cream.