Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day. I like to start with a hearty, hot, and delicious breakfast--no bowls of cereal, please. Since I've started my whole30, I've made lots of great egg dishes, but now I'm having a problem. I'm tired of eggs.
Yes, I know there is egg in this dish, too. But here, the egg is almost a garnish. Just ONE egg, in between a layer of tangy cilantro avocado crema and a bed of tender, falling-apart carnitas. This breakfast is about the meat! The pork is cooked slowly in a mixture of lime and lemon juice, which tenderizes the meat, and then browned at the end for that little bit of crispness.
Carnitas are a time investment, but I think they're worth it. You can get a lot done around the house while you simmer carnitas for a couple of hours. And in the end, you'll have a delicious pile of meat that you can use for tacos, salads, stir-fries, or pretty much anything. By the time my carnitas were done, I was hungry. I whipped up this cilantro avocado crema, fried an egg, and was soon indulging in a delicious and less egg-centric breakfast.
Ingredients (makes 4-6 servings):
For the carnitas (adapted from The Clothes Make The Girl):
2-3 pounds pork shoulder or butt, boneless or bone-in
1/3 cup lime juice
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 tablespoon cumin
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
For the cilantro avocado crema:
1 avocado, peeled and pitted
Small handful fresh cilantro leaves and tender stems
1/4 cup coconut milk
Salt to taste
1-2 teaspoons lemon or lime juice
1 fried egg per person
Cilantro for garnish
To make the carnitas, combine all the spices and salt in a small bowl. Cut your pork into large chunks (about 3-4 inches) and rub the spices into the pork. Place the pork in a large, deep skillet and pour in the lemon and lime juice. Pour in water to just cover the pork.
Bring the water to a good rolling boil, then reduce the heat so that the mixture bubbles some, but not too much (kind of like a vigorous simmer). Go find something else to do, keep half an eye on the pot, and check it after two hours. At that point, almost all of the liquid should be gone.
Once the liquid is gone, turn the pieces of pork carefully to brown them on all sides, then remove from the heat. Voila! Carnitas.
To make the cilantro avocado crema, combine all ingredients in a food processor and pulse until smooth. Taste, and add more salt or lemon juice if needed.
To serve, shred two or three pieces of carnitas and spread them out on a plate. Top with a fried egg, cilantro avocado crema, and cilantro if desired. Serve hot.
Carnitas will keep in the fridge for several days. Reheat them by sauteing them quickly before serving.
You might also like:
Asparagus Bundles with Bacon & Poached Eggs
Breakfast Arepas with Guacamole
Veggie Hash & Eggs