Recipe: Puerco Pibil… Crock-Pot Style

If you’ve ever watched Once Upon a Time in Mexico (disclaimer: I never have), you are aware that a dish called Puerco Pibil (or Cochinita Pibil) plays a significant role in the story. And if you’ve ever seen the DVD (disclaimer: I never have), you may have found a special feature called “10-Minute Cooking School” where Robert Rodriguez, in all his bandanna-rocking glory, shows you how to cook Puerco Pibil while waxing philosophical on food and lovemaking. And if you dig slow-cooked pork (disclaimer: hell yeah I do), you’ve probably had it in your mind to make it.

Puerco pibil in a bowl

If you watch the recipe, though, it seems like it could be a bit of a nuisance… finding banana leaves, grinding spices, blending things, marinating, roasting for hours… doesn’t sound like a weeknight meal! But with a little creativity and a Crock Pot, you can bring on the pork coma any night of the week without too much fuss. At least, that’s what my slow-cooker Puerco Pibil experiment seems to have demonstrated.

Banana leaves? Habanero peppers? What’s an achiote? Click to read on, Agent Sands.

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Recipe: Braised Beef Ribs

I love ribs. I must admit an attraction to the barbarian bone-gnawing involved. However, I can’t abide the price that they charge at the grocery store for a food product that’s 3/4 inedible by weight and which is traditionally considered a scrap cut of meat. I mean, who ever heard of paying $5 a pound for what’s essentially a string of bones chained together with a bit of meat and sinew? So I was pleasantly surprised when I came across a few packages of particularly meaty beef short ribs at the local Harris Teeter for a reasonable 99 cents a pound–and ended up coming home with about six pounds worth.

Ribs!

Read on to find out what became of this beefy treasure