Puerco Pibil, also known as Cochinita Pibil or Cochinita con Achiote, is a traditional Mexican recipe of slow-roasted pork. This Puerco Pibil or Slow Roasted Pork dish is from the Yucatán Peninsula and involves marinating the meat in strongly acidic citrus juice, adding annatto seed, and roasting the pork while it is wrapped in a banana leaf.
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- Coffee grinder
- Large Baking dish or Roasting Pan
- Zip-lock bag
- Banana leaves (optional)
- 5 tbs Annato Seed note
- 2 tsp Cummin Seed
- 1 tbs Peppercorn
- 1/2 tsp Cloves
- 8 whole Allspice
- 2 tbs salt
- 8 cloves garlic
- 1-3 habanero chiles note
- 1/2 cup orange juice
- 1/2 cup white vinegar
- 5 lemons
- Splash of the finest tequila you can find note
- 5 lbs Pork Butt
- Using the coffee ginder, grind Annato, Cumin Seed, Cloves, Allspice, and Peppercorns into a fine powder.
- Remove seeds and inner membrane from habanero.
- Add vinegar, orange juice, habanero, salt, garlic, and spice powder to blender. Blend on high for 30-60 seconds.
- Add juice of five lemons and Tequila and blend for another 30-60 seconds. Congratulations, you've just made achiote paste.
- Cut pork into 2 inch cubes and place in a large ziplock bag; pour achiote paste over pork. Seal bag and mush bag around to spread the paste over the pork. Refrigerate for 2-4 hours.
- Line the baking pan with banana leaves (or foil if you don’t have leaves).
- Pour pork and achiote paste into pan.
- Cover with more banana leaves and then foil. Crimp foil around pan to make sure steam doesn’t escape.
- Bake in the oven at 325° F for 4 hours.
- And bam, a dish so good you might just get whacked for making it.
What is Achiote?
The Achiote seed comes from the Bixa Orellana shrub native to a region between Mexico, Centeral and northern South America. The tree is best known as the source of annatto, a natural orange-red condiment. The ground seeds are widely used in traditional dishes in Central and South America, Mexico, and the Caribbean, such as Bistec Encebollado, Pollos Rellenos and Sopa de Queso con Donas de Masa. North, Central, and South American natives originally used the seeds to make red body paint and lipstick, as well as a spice. For this reason, the Bixa Orellana is sometimes called the Lipstick Tree.
Once Upon a Time in Mexico
Cochinita pibil is a recurring element of the movie Once Upon a Time in Mexico directed by Robert Rodriguez, where it is the favorite food of a CIA agent played by Johnny Depp, who orders this dish every time he enters a Mexican restaurant and urges every person he has lunch with to taste it. He will go as far as killing a cook because his puerco pibil is “too good”.
Rodriguez also included this recipe for puerco pibil and demonstrated how to prepare it in the special features section of the DVD.
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