Pernil is a Cuban or Puerto Rican pork dish.  It would typically be a pork shoulder.  It is slow cooked and marinated in lime juice and onions and garlic.  Obviously with a dish of this nature there are lots of variations, and everyone knows “the best” way to make it.  Last night I used a small piece of a pork tenderloin, but I thawed the whole thing. I decided to cook the rest of it, and have some tacos.  They are an easy and tasty dinner.  But first, I had to cook the pork!  This would normally be a large piece of meat, and a very low temperature oven.  In this case, I had a smaller piece of meat, but low and slow is still the best way to go.

Preheat your oven to about 250F.

Next, I made my marinade. Puree half an onion in a food processor, add a couple of cloves of garlic, and chop them as well.  I added some adobo and a chipotle pepper, and chopped that.  Then I added some lime juice. 

I wrapped the tenderloin in a piece of foil, and poured the marinade on it, and made sure it covered it.  I sealed it up and let it sit on the counter for about a half hour just to let it marinate a little bit.  Sitting out also will help speed up the cooking some, because they oven doesn’t have to bring the temperature up from the temperature of the fridge.

Put the pork in the oven, and close the door.  I only had about a pound of meat, so I gave it about an hour and a half.  As long as you have the temperature low there should be almost no way you could possibly burn this.  It will just be more tender, although if you go too long it will end up being dry.

Once you have the pernil out of the oven shred it.  I cut mine into pieces and shredded it to make it easier to deal with. I did that because tenderloin has long muscle fibers that run along the length of it.  Then I added some chopped onion(if I had some I would have chopped some cilantro and added it too) , and a squeeze of lime juice and I was good to go!


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