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Enter any Mexican taquería in California and you'll find carnitas on the menu, usually pork butt (the shoulder roast) - braised first, pulled apart, then roasted on high heat to caramelise. We source our pork locally from Moss Valley Fine Meats. We serve it either in a burrito with black beans, rice and salsa, or in a taco for a lighter bite.

Drink Pairings From StarmoreBoss

The Italian grape Lacrima - meaning 'tears', as the skin is so thin that the juice comes out of the fruit like a teardrop when ripe - from the Marche region is a great match for pulled pork. Fresh, light and floral like freshly-cut violets when first opened, it will work well with meaty flavours and can take on the salsa and a bit of heat.

Alternatively, a zesty verdicchio (white) from the same region will be snappily refreshing and bring any lime element of the dish into focus.


  • 600g pork shoulder
  • 1tsp cumin seeds (toasted)
  • 1tsp paprika
  • Cider vinegar
  • Salt & pepper
  1. Lightly oil and salt the pork rind to make sure you get great crackling, then roast the pork at 175°C. After four hours, take the meat out of the oven, drain the juices and set them to one side. Take the crackling off. If it hasn't crackled enough, you can put it back in the oven at a higher heat (190°C), but keep an eye on it, because it can blacken quickly.

  2. Pull the pork apart and cover it with a generous splash of cider vinegar, toasted cumin seeds, paprika, salt and pepper. Put it back in the oven for 20 minutes, then make a stock with the juices that you have set aside. Add some water and reduce it over the heat.

  3. Pour a little of the stock over it, so that the meat soaks it up, and serve it with salsa and rice for a delicious Mexican treat, or with wheat flour tacos, salsa, iceberg lettuce, sour cream, jalapeños and coriander.

by Now Then Sheffield

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