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  • Catia Pacheco Castro

Slow Roasted Puerto Rican Inspired Pernil (Pork Shoulder) with Homemade Sazon Seasoning


Hello friends, today we stayed in all day. Cuddled up in bed watching movies. It was perfect for my slow cooked Puerto Rican inspired pork pernil. Pernil is pork shoulder and in the states, it is known confusingly as pork butt or Boston butt. This is the same recipe I use on the food truck for my delicious pulled pork. ( Secret's out, LOL )

Growing up in Connecticut, and having lots of Puerto Rican friends and family, has really influenced this dish. It is a fusion of my Portuguese roast pork, but with an added latin twist.

Sazon! If you have never heard of sazon, it is a latin spice blend used throughout latin countries and the Caribbean. It imparts a delicious flavour to any meat, fish or rice dish. I use it to make lots of dishes, and it lends itself perfectly to my Mediterranean cuisine, too!

The colour itself is gorgeous. It comes from annato seeds, ground and mixed with garlic powder, oregano...and a few more spices. The recipe for my homemade sazon will follow in a seperate post, as the store bought version can be filled with lots of salt and msg. Here is the recipe for my delicious pernil, adapted from my sister's recipe. She also is an amazing chef :) Her husband is Puerto Rican, and he says it is the best he has ever had. I always stock up on Sazon when in the States, and my sister will usually post some out to me. I recently learned it is available here in th UK, on Amzon. Yay! If of course you prefer a more natural spice blend, then please see my post for my, homemade Sazon. Please understand I have added my own touches, hence it says inpired, but none the less still delicious and with all the flavour. I let mine marinate for 24 hours and then slow roast for 4 hours. Just before serving, I uncover it and broil the top, on high heat, for 7-9 minutes. The fat will blister up and give you, chicharrón! (pork crackling), you can serve it up with, arroz y gandules, (rice and beans, which the recipe is way overdue for) YUMMY.

I hope you enjoy it, and if there are leftovers, make sure you make some delicious sandwiches....XOXOXO


Slow Roasted Puerto Rican Inspired Pernil (Pork Shoulder) with Homemade Sazon Seasoning

Serves 6-8

Time: Prep 8-24 hours beforehand

Cook:4 hours


1 Bone-less Pork Shoulder ,1.5 -2 kilos

3 tblsps. My homemade or store bought Sazon seasoning with achiote (annato)

2 tbsps. Tomato paste concentrate

1 tbsp. Course sea salt

1 tbsp. Dried oregano

Freshly ground black pepper to taste

1 onion, peeled and quartered

2 bay leaves

1 Sprig of rosemary

1 Sprig of thyme

1 Pork stock cube

8 cloves of garlic, peeled and left whole

1 Green bell pepper, seeded, ribs removed and quartered

1 Small bunch cilantro/ corriander

2 tbsps. Red or white wine vinega

125 ml. Red wine

125 ml. Orange juice


1. *8-24 hours before roasting, place pork and all ingredients in an oven proof dish, ( I like a cast iron pot with lid ) and rub pork all over with ingredients. Turn often during marinating process and keep refridgerated.

2. When ready to cook, remove from fridge. Pre-heat oven to 160°C/320°F.

Making sure pork is skin side up, cover pot with foil to ensure steam remains. Cover with lid if it has one. Place in centre of oven and cook for 3 hours.

3. After 3 hours,uncover and set your broiler to it's highest setting. Do not walk away! Broil on high until skin is charred and crisp, about 7-9 minutes.

4. Lift pernil from pot and place on cutting board. let rest 10 minutes.

5. Place a sieve over a bowl and drain sauce from roasting pot. Set aside to serve.

6. Using 2 forks, shred pernil into portions and remove chicharrón. Divide among guests or better yet, place a large platter in the table's centre, and let everyone serve themselves.

*Note: If sauce is too concentrated, add a bit of boiling water to it before serving.































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Crawley,West Sussex UK

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