Carnitas with Salsa Verde | Stoneground Grits (or corn tortillas) | Cucumber & Herb Salad

If you have the time to cook the pork (it does the work; you just have to be there), true carnitas is delightful for tacos, or just on top of a big green salad. There are similar preparations that are much quicker, though, like crispy ground pork or buying smoked shoulder from a local BBQ shop.

Love to Cook: The cooking time for this carnitas recipe is 2-3 hours, but other than time it needs almost no attention until the very end. Martha Stewart’s version is a bit shorter and just as good. Use herbs of your choice for the salsa verde, and serve with thick, warm corn tortillas, or grits, or grit cakes, and a simple cucumber salad.

Weeknight Reality: Similar in taste and texture is this crispy pork, which uses ground pork and is ready in less than 20 minutes. The recipe calls for steamed rice, but corn tortillas would work here, too.

Need a Miracle: Most BBQ shops will sell plain smoked pork shoulder (pulled or chopped), without added sauce. Some groceries also carry smoked pork in the freezer section. Be wary of the ready-to-cook versions in the refrigerated aisle, though, as they are loaded with salt. Serve the meat with warm tortillas, cilantro, avocado, and lime, with or without a salad.