Funky-Fiesty Carnitas!

Oh my goodness. I just made some seriously DELICIOUS, mouth-watering tacos, using my carnitas recipe. The secret to these babies?
Young jackfruit. Yes. Jackfruit. Sick with me!! But the jackfruit MUST be un-ripened.
Unripened jackfruit has the texture of pulled pork or chicken, and that only becomes enhanced when it cooks, and the fruit ‘meat’ becomes tenderized. The beautiful thing about jackfruit is that you can flavor it however you want, since it’s neutral in flavor. It’s also pretty pretty high in fiber, while being low in  calories (if you’re counting!)
These carnitas had a smokey, bold, yet slightly sweet flavor, and were super tender. If you had not told me that we were eating jackfruit, I would have seriously thought that I was eating tacos with pulled dark meat chicken. No joke!
Also-If you’re wondering where on earth you can get canned jackfruit, you can typically get it at your nearest available Asian Market, Whole Foods, or just order some bulk cans on Amazon! And really, the price per 17 ounce can was less than $3, which makes this significantly cheaper than using chicken or pork.
Here’s the recipe:
Funky-Fiesty Carnitas!
Ingredients:
Two 17oz cans of young jackfruit (Make sure that it’s unsweetened)
3 tablespoons of your favorite fajita seasoning
3 tablespoons of cumin
Juice of one orange (or tangerine)
Juice of 1 lime
1 teaspoon of salt
1 tsp liquid smoke
2 tsp of smoked paprika
2 tbsp cooking oil
1 cup of water
1 small onion, diced
Directions:
1. Drain both cans of jackfruit and rinse in cold water for a couple minutes, in order to get rid of most of the salt brine. After rinsing, pull each piece of jackfruit ‘meat’ with your hands and break into chunky shreds. (Optional step: with a knife, remove the tough end-piece and finely chop that up to add into the shredded ‘meat’ mixture).
2. In a large bowl, combine all the other ingredients (except the oil & jack fruit). Mix well, until a marinade forms. Gradually stir in jackfruit, and let it marinade for at least 1 hour (I let mine marinate overnight).
3. In a large pot, heat up oil on medium high for a couple minutes, and then add in jackfruit, including the entire marinade. At this point, crank the heat on HIGH, and let this marinade cook down for about 20 minutes, until most of the marinade has reduced & the jackfruit begins to turn into a light golden brown. Make sure to stir periodically and keep an eye on the mixture!
4. Serve the carnitas on your tacos & fajitas with whatever toppings you like & enjoy! J
Makes 4 servings
Nutritional Information (Per serving):
207 cal/ 2.8g protein/ 8.5 g fat/ 27.8 g carbohydrates/ 3.9 g fiber

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