These past two months have probably been the busiest months during the whole year. After almost one year, my second business as a school lunch meal delivery program has taken off! I can proudly say that I now own two successful businesses. In exchange, my work hours have extended from 8 hours to 12. Everyday I would look at my list of tasks to complete and stare at the bottom chore, “write blog post,” with hesitation. I’m not sure how other food bloggers manage but maintaining a website while working long hours is definitely a challenge!
I finally decided that it has been too long and I must share the list of recipes I’ve been holding onto for the last month. A while back I created a fusion Mexican carnitas torta, combining California cuisine with Mexican. Instead of the typical pork, guacamole, cheese sandwich, I decided to give this torta an update. Fried avocado, fresh pico de gallo, slow braised pork, Monterey Jack cheese and roasted jalapenos complete this beauty of a sandwich. My mouth is salivating just remembering how delicious this torta was…
- 2 jalapenos
- 3 lb pork shoulder, bone-less
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
- 2 tsp cumin
- 1 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp onion powder
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped into 1 inch chunks
- 4 cloves garlic
- juice of 2 oranges
- 1 cup chicken broth
- juice of 1/2 lime
- 1 chipotle (canned in adobo sauce)
- 1/3 cup mayonnaise
- salt and pepper
- 3 medium tomatoes, diced
- 1/2 small red onion, diced
- 1 bunch cilantro, chopped
- juice of 1 lime
- salt and pepper
- 2 avocadoes
- 1/2 cup flour
- 2 eggs, whisked
- 1/2 cup panko
- 6 torta rolls
- ice berg lettuce
- 6 slices Monterey Jack cheese
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
- Place jalapenos on a baking sheet. Roast for 10-15 minutes or until the jalapeno has softened. Remove from oven. Slice into thin slices. Set aside.
- Reduce oven to 325 degrees F.
- Prepare the pork. Combine salt, pepper, cumin, oregano, paprika, onion powder and olive oil. Spread rub evenly onto the pork. Lay chopped onion and garlic into a deep baking dish. Place pork on top and pour juice of 2 oranges and chicken broth into the pan. Cover and bake for 2 1/2 hours or until the meat easily shreds apart. Remove from oven and shred the meat using two forks. Keep warm.
- Meanwhile, prepare the chipotle aioli. Blend together lime juice, chipotle and mayonnaise until smooth. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Make the pico de gallo. Chop tomatoes and combine with finely chopped red onion, cilantro, and lime juice. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
- Prepare the fried avocado. Slice avocado in half, discarding the pit. Scoop out the flesh using a spoon. Slice into 1/4 inch thick slices. Coat the sliced avocado in the flour, followed by the egg than panko. Heat oil in frying pan over medium-high heat. Carefully place the avocado into the hot oil and fry until golden brown. Flip and cook on the other side. Remove and place on paper towels to blot the excess oil. Sprinkle with salt. Set aside.
- Toast the bread. Assemble the sandwiches. Spread chipotle mayo on the buns followed by ice berg lettuce, carnitas, Monterey Jack cheese, fried avocado, roasted jalapenos and pico de gallo. Serve immediately.
**Helpful Tips and Common Mistakes
Braised meats may be one of my favorite ways to enjoy red meats. Sure the cooking takes a while but the end result is completely worth it. Not to mention that once you put the meat in the oven, all you have to do is wait!
For this Mexican carnitas torta, you will be preparing a more traditional carnitas. Prepare the meat either in the oven or in the slow cooker for a tender, fall-apart pork sandwich. If preparing in the slow cooker, it will take about 6 hours. When the pork is ready, it should easy shred with just the help of 2 forks.
While the pork is cooking, prepare the remaining ingredients. The chipotle aioli, roasted jalapeno and pico de gallo can all be prepared the day before. In fact, I suggest you make the pico de gallo at least one hour before serving to allow the flavors to meld.
Fry the avocado and you are almost ready to enjoy this torta! Bread the avocado just as you would if you were making chicken parmesan. Coat the sliced avocado in flour, shaking off the excess. Dip in egg than coat in panko to create a crispy exterior. Fry until golden brown and set aside.
Assemble the Mexican carnitas torta, sit back and enjoy this beautiful sandwich you’ve put together! I admit, this was one of the more labor intensive sandwiches I’ve created but wow, it was amazing. Now it’s time to kick off my shoes and relax.
Looking for someone to come to your house and prepare these dishes for you? It is possible! If you are in Los Angeles and looking for a private chef, please feel free to contact me. For more information, visit Private Kitchen Los Angeles.