Lunchbreak: Braised Pork Belly Taco

Midday News

Brad Newman

Café by Cookies & Carnitas at 5938 & 5940 N. Broadway St.

Café by Cookies & Carnitas

Tuesday – Saturday 7 am – 9 pm

Cookies & Carnitas at the Green City Market

Enjoy Cookies & Carnitas’ house made breakfast bagel sandwiches, tacos, and baked goods in Chicago’s Lincoln Park, while shopping the bounty of local farmers, ranchers and producers.

Every Wednesday & Saturday through October from 7 am – 1 pm.

Virtual or In-Person Summer Kids’ Cooking Classes

6 – 1.5 to 2 hr sessions on Thursdays beginning: 6/24 – 7/29 either via Zoom or in person at the restaurant.

Father’s Day Pizza Special

Help us treat all the dads on Father’s Day!  The Saturday before Father’s Day, buy a cheese pizza and enjoy up to 3 toppings on us – anything from Octopus to Pork Belly, Farmer’s Market seasonal produce, Artisan Cheeses…Order directly with us by phoning: (773) 769-2900.


Cookies & Carnitas Braised Pork Belly Taco

Makes 15 Tacos

To prepare the pork belly:

3 tablespoons black peppercorns, ground

5 tablespoons dark chili powder

1 tablespoon onion powder

1 tablespoon garlic powder

1 tablespoon cumin, ground

0.5 tablespoon coriander, ground

1 can chipotles in adobo

1 cup orange juice

1 whole boneless pork belly 12 to 15 lbs

Kosher Salt

14 garlic cloves

12 oz crushed tomatoes

1 large yellow onion, peeled & halved



In a mixing bowl, combine & mix all the spices. Place the pork belly on a baking sheet. Evenly sprinkle and rub the meat on one side with half the spice mixture. Repeat on the other side. Take the kosher, and sprinkle both sides of the rubbed meat. Wrap with plastic and refrigerate overnight.

When ready to braise, preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Remove the pork from the refrigerator. Generously sprinkle both sides with the kosher salt and set aside.

In a large braising pan, add the pork belly, cutting in half if necessary, skin side up. To the pot, add the garlic, crushed tomatoes, onion, canned chipotles, orange juice, and enough water to cover.

Braise in oven for 3-4 hours, or until center of the pork reaches 160 degrees and the meat is fork tender.

Remove from oven, drain and reserve the fat. Let rest for at least 15 minutes.

To prepare the tacos:

Corn Tortillas

Cookies & Carnitas Fire Roasted Salsa

Fresh Cilantro

Mexican Crema

Chihuahua Cheese

Red & Green Cabbages, Shredded



While the pork belly is resting, warm the corn tortillas your preferred way; wrapped in the oven, in a tortilla warmer, crisped in a cast iron pan, and etc. Leave covered.

Remove the pork belly from the braising liquid and place on cutting board. Using a meat slicer or serrated knife, cut the belly into 2 inch sections across the grain. Then portion the section into half inch slices. In a medium hot skillet, add canola oil and sear the pork belly slices on each side until golden brown.

Lay the 2 tortilla(s) on the serving plate or platter if you are plating for a crowd, place 2-3 slice of the belly, top with the cheese, salsa, cilantro, cabbage & sour cream in that order to your taste. Serve immediately with fresh limes and enjoy!

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