RECIPE: Garlic Pork

Like most ethnicities and cultures, when the Portuguese came to Trinidad, they brought traditions and recipes that were passed down from generation to generation. As is with many recipes, tried and true Portuguese recipes vary from family to family but, the heart and soul of it remain the same. For this week’s issue, we have two traditional Portuguese recipes that are commonly made around Christmas time.
Garlic Pork
Garlic pork is a Christmas tradition for many Portuguese families in Trinidad.There are many different ways to prepare this dish for Christmas.
The Da Silva Garlic Pork Recipe has been in their family for over a hundred years in Trinidad and takes a total of five days to prepare before cooking and serving.
5 pounds pork leg or shoulder, cut into 1-inch cubes
2 cups fresh oregano
5 scotch bonnet peppers
12 ounces peeled garlic
Salt, to taste
White vinegar
Oil, for frying
1 jar large enough for pork and ingredients to soak
1 Wash pork in clean dry bowl using white vinegar, not water. Do not let water get into contact with pork. Repeat and then place in a clean, dry colander to drain.
2 Crush garlic and add to a medium-sized bowl.
3 Halve scotch bonnet peppers and remove the pith and seeds. Then, finely chop and add to garlic.
4 Strip oregano off from stems and add to garlic and scotch bonnet peppers.
5 Mix garlic, oregano and peppers with just enough white vinegar to cover the ingredients. Then, add salt to taste and mix.
6 Using a clean and dry spoon, layer the bottom of the jar with garlic seasoning and then, add a layer of pork on top of the seasoning. Repeat this process until all pork and seasoning is used.
7  Add vinegar to jar and ensure the pork is covered so that the pickling process can properly take place.
8 Seal jar tightly to avoid air from getting into it.
9 Let pork soak for five days before cooking.
10 After five days, the pork is ready to fry.
11 Place pot on medium heat. Add two tablespoons of oil.
12 Drain pork to remove liquid before frying. Fry until cooked through, about 5 to 10 minutes.
13 Serve with aniseed bread and enjoy on Christmas morning!
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