Able’s Peppercorn Puerco Pebil
The pepper factor is amplified in this twist on a traditional Mayan-style puerco (or cochinita) pebil, a flavorful, slow-roasted pork dish.
- 1 Tbsp. Four Corners Peppercorn Blend
- 1 tsp. szechuan peppercorns
- 1 tsp. allspice berries
- 1 tsp. cumin seeds
- 3 1/2 oz. achiote paste
- 8 cloves garlic
- 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
- 2 lemons, juiced
- 1 orange, zest grated, juiced
- 1 Tbsp. kosher salt
- 1/4 cup tequila, optional
- 1 to 2 habanero chiles*, optional
- 4 lbs. pork shoulder/butt
- banana leaves*, optional
*Seed habanero chiles for less heat. Banana leaves are optional but very cool and add to the presentation of the dish.
Place Four Corners, Szechwan, allspice and cumin in a coffee/spice grinder and grind to a very fine powder. Place powder, achiote paste, garlic, vinegar lemon juice, orange zest and juice, salt, tequila, and habanero chiles in a blender and blend thoroughly. Cut pork into 2-inch cubes and place in a large zip top bag. Pour contents of blender into bag, seal and refrigerate overnight. Line a baking dish with banana leaves, if using, leaving enough overhang to cover top. Pour pork and marinade into the dish along with ½ cup water. Wrap banana leaves over pork to cover completely. Cover dish with aluminum foil and/or lid. Slow roast in a 325-degree oven for 3 hours, or until pork pieces are so tender they're falling apart.
Serve on banana leaves over rice with garnishes like cilantro, pickled onions or a crumbled Latin cheese, such as queso seco. If you are saving any pork for later, remove it from the banana leaf wrapping first.