One-Pot Wonders

Pork Torta

June  1, 2010
4 Ratings
  • Serves 8
Author Notes

My husband lived in Tijuana for a year, and whenever pork comes up in a conversation, he starts drooling about the carnitas tortas he had while he lived there, and I am consumed by jealousy. Then, I found an awesome sandwich shop in Boston that serves an amazing torta with jicama slaw. This has been my recreation of that brilliant sandwich. Though the pork is not traditional carnitas, it's cooked in a tangy marinade taught to me by a neighbor, and pairs wonderfully with the sweet, cool, spiciness of jicama slaw. It's a plan ahead recipe, since the pork has to marinate overnight and cook for a long time, but it's so worth it. Oh, and I almost forgot! A real torta would have beans, but I can't eat beans, so I leave them out. However, for a full experience, warm up some refritos and spread them on the rolls before you add the avocado! - fiveandspice —fiveandspice

Test Kitchen Notes

After 3 hours, the pork shoulder is juicy and falling apart and the lime and oregano have mellowed and infused the pork thoroughly. The jicama slaw is sweet, creamy, musky and tart -- none in excess. If you aren't a big fan of goat cheese, you can substitute a Mexican queso fresco, shredded Jack or leave cheese out entirely -- the avocado, slaw and meltingly tender pork are pretty magical on their own. - Kristen —The Editors

What You'll Need
  • Pork tortas
  • 8 good quality, large sandwich rolls
  • slow cooked, lime marinated pork (see below)
  • 2 avocados, pits and peels removed, chopped and just barely mashed with a little salt
  • 8 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  • 3 cups very coarsely shredded/julienned jicama root
  • 1 carrot, coarsely shredded
  • 4 scallions, quartered lengthwise and then cut into julienne length strips
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and cut into thin matchsticks
  • 3 tablespoons chopped, fresh cilantro
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup plain yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 2 limes, juiced
  • 3 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • slow cooked, lime-marinated pork
  • 3 pounds pork shoulder or butt, trimmed of excess fat, cut into 2 inch cubes
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, minced
  • 5 large limes, juiced (plus a bit more lime juice, for basting)
  1. Pork tortas
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, yogurt, honey, lime juice, and spices. Set aside in the refrigerator for at least 10 minutes for flavors to combine.
  3. In a large bowl, combine jicama, carrot, scallions, and cucumber. Toss with the dressing.
  4. Split open sandwich rolls, and scoop a little bit of bread out of each side to make extra room for the fillings. Spread the bottom of each roll with some of the avocado. Top with pork, crumbled goat cheese, and jicama slaw. Put the top of each roll on each sandwich, and serve. Have lots of napkins!!
  1. slow cooked, lime-marinated pork
  2. Toss the pork with the rest of the ingredients and allow to marinate in the refrigerator overnight (at least 8-12 hours).
  3. Put pork and marinade together in a Dutch oven or roasting pan, cover tightly, and bake in a 350F oven for 2 1/2 - 3 hours. (Peek at 1 1/2 hours to check the liquid levels and pour in a half cup, or so, of mixed lime juice and water if the pork looks totally dry - my pork often looks like it has no liquid by the end, but is extremely tender and falling apart nicely)
  4. Use forks to shred the meat apart. Stir any cooking juices into the meat, and use the pork in assembling the tortas.

See what other Food52ers are saying.

  • Marisa Corrado Walsh
    Marisa Corrado Walsh
  • Mollyh
  • AntoniaJames
  • monkeymom
  • Kayb

10 Reviews

Marisa C. October 23, 2023
Delicious! And easy. Pork Very salty for our family. Next time I make it will only use 1-1.5 tsp salt.
Mollyh April 7, 2014
Where does the rice vinegar go? In the dressing with the lime juice?
fiveandspice April 8, 2014
Yes it does! Sorry for the omission.
AntoniaJames June 10, 2010
Congrats on the EP! This recipe is so appealing. I especially like the lime-marinated pork!! Very, very nice. ;o)
fiveandspice June 11, 2010
Thank you Antonia James :).
monkeymom June 4, 2010
This looks fabulous! We do a similar pork shoulder with oranges. Will definitely try the slaw!
Kayb June 2, 2010
If I were not going to be out of town for the next four days, I would not let an evening pass before I tried this slaw. Pork sounds wonderful, too, but that slaw!
fiveandspice June 4, 2010
The trials and tribulations of going out of town!! ;) I hope you get a chance to try it though (you too, monkey mom!). The slaw is great on all sorts of things as well - especially anything including avocado.
AntoniaJames June 1, 2010
Yummmm. Really like both the slaw and the pork recipes. Have saved to my recipes!! I know my boys (including the oldest one, Mr. T) are going to enjoy this. ;o)
fiveandspice June 1, 2010
Thanks! :)