Using a slow-cooker to braise pork means you can start this recipe in the morning, go about your day, and just sizzle the meat right before dinner. Store any leftover carnitas in the cooking liquid and use for sandwiches, or serve over polenta.
5 tablespoons grapeseed or other neutral-flavored oil, divided
1 tablespoon adobo sauce from canned chipotle chiles
1 teaspoon achiote paste
4 wide strips orange zest
12 corn tortillas (6 in.)
Pico de gallo, store-bought or homemade
How to Make It
Heat 3 tbsp. oil in a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Season pork with the salt and pepper. Add pork to skillet and brown on all sides, 12 to 14 minutes. Place pork in a 6-qt. slow-cooker.
Discard fat from skillet and wipe clean with paper towels. Stir together broth, adobo sauce, and achiote paste in skillet and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Pour over pork, then add orange zest.
Cover slow-cooker and cook on low until pork is very tender, about 8 hours. Lift meat to a cutting board or platter. Pour cooking liquid through a fine wire-mesh strainer into a measuring cup, then discard solids. Skim fat from cooking liquid. Using two forks, shred meat into large chunks.
Heat 1 tbsp. oil in cleaned cast-iron skillet over high heat. Arrange half of meat in an even layer in skillet and cook, undisturbed, until deeply caramelized, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in 1/2 cup cooking liquid; transfer to a bowl. Repeat with remaining 1 tbsp. oil, pork, and 1/2 cup cooking liquid.
Toast tortillas over an open flame 20 to 30 seconds per side and wrap in a clean kitchen towel until ready to serve. Or, wrap in towel and microwave 1 minute to warm.