Before I begin this post, I humbly apologize to every Cuban or person of Cuban heritage. I love this style of cooking but a lot of the ingredients are not available here in the Canadian Rockies. For example I noted some recipes call for a sour orange. Therefore, this is my homage to the style and flavour profile but is in no way authentic Cuban food. If you haven’t had Cuban cuisine, seek it out. It is wonderful!
I had a nice chunk of pork loin that I had cut off a full loin I purchased to make back (Canadian) bacon. I decided to try and create a Cuban inspired dish.
I started by putting the following in my mortar and pestle:
2 cloves garlic
5 ml (1 tsp) Kosher salt
1 ml (1/4 tsp) cumin
2 ml (1/2 tsp) dried oregano
2 ml (1/2 tsp) ground coriander
I mashed them together into a paste.
I mixed the following together to dissolve the honey:
25 ml (2 tbsp) lime juice
15 ml (1 tbsp) lemon juice
15 ml (1 tbsp) honey
15 ml (1 tbsp) vegetable oil
I had a nice 890 gram (2 pound) piece of pork with a 1/4 inch fat cap. I cut a diamond pattern through the fat. I really recommend you have a little fat cap on the pork loin. It helps keep it moist.
I rubbed the garlic paste into the slices.
I put the pork in a plastic bag and added the lime juice mixture. I marinated in the fridge 8 hours to overnight.
I patted the excess moisture off the pork and put it in the fridge, uncovered, a couple of hours.
This can be done in a 375 F oven or smoker.
I preheated my smoker to 375 F and smoked to an internal temperature of 155 F (I don’t like pink in my pork). It took a little over an hour.
I let it sit for 25 minutes and carved it.
This pork was incredibly moist. The citrus tang and seasoning blend gave a great taste that went perfectly with the pork. To my Cuban friends, thanks for the inspiration.
The Old Fat Guy
- 890 grams (2 pounds) pork loin with 1/4 inch fat cap
- 2 cloves garlic
- 5 ml (1 tsp) Kosher salt
- 1 ml (1/4 tsp) cumin
- 2 ml (1/2 tsp) dried oregano
- 2 ml (1/2 tsp) ground coriander
- 25 ml (2 tbsp) lime juice
- 15 ml (1 tbsp) lemon juice
- 15 ml (1 tbsp) honey
- 15 ml (1 tbsp) vegetable oil
- Put the garlic, salt, cumin, oregano, and coriander in a mortar and grind it to a paste with a pestle.
- Mix the lime juice, lemon juice, honey and vegetable oil together.
- Cut a inch wide diamond pattern just through the fat cap.
- Rub the garlic paste into the slices.
- Put the pork into a plastic bag and add the juice mixture.
- Marinate from 8 hours to overnight.
- Cook in a 375 F smoker or oven to an internal temperature of 155 F.
- Let sit for 15 minutes before slicing.