Try this recipe for cochinita pibil (slow-cooked pork) from Soho's El Pastor. Serve it as part of a Mexican-style feast along with tacos al pastor, esquites (Mexican corn salad) and spicy Mexican rice, plus check out more of our Mexican-inspired recipes.

For more mouthwatering pulled pork ideas, try our BBQ pulled pork, sloppy joes and pulled pork tacos.



  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 7 cloves
  • 15 whole black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 15g achiote paste
  • 4 sprigs oregano, leaves only
  • ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ orange, zest pared into strips with a peeler
  • 3 tbsp orange juice
  • 4 tsp white wine vinegar
  • ½ tsp soy sauce


  • 650g pork collar or shoulder, cut into large chunks
  • ½ plum tomato, sliced
  • ½ small onion, sliced
  • ¼ red pepper, sliced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 15g banana leaves, (optional)


  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 500g red onions, finely chopped
  • 3-4 habanero or scotch bonnet chillies, deseeded and chopped
  • 4 sprigs oregano, leaves only
  • ½ tsp ground allspice
  • 100ml apple cider vinegar


  • 30g halloumi, grated
  • 1 lime, cut into 8 wedges
  • 12 corn tortillas


  • STEP 1

    To make the marinade, heat a small frying pan, and toast the garlic, cloves, peppercorns and cumin seeds for 3-4 minutes to release the flavour of the spices. Put all the other marinade ingredients in a blender with ½ tsp of fine sea salt and whizz until smooth. Tip into a large bowl and mix in the toasted spices.

  • STEP 2

    Add the pork to the bowl with the marinade, with 1 tsp of salt, the tomato, onion, red pepper and bay leaf, and leave to marinate for at least 3 hours, or up to 6 hours.

  • STEP 3

    Meanwhile, to make the pickled habanero, heat the olive oil in a pan over a medium heat. When hot, cook the onions with a pinch of salt for 10 minutes until soft, then add the chillies and cook for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and add the oregano, allspice and vinegar, and season to taste. Mix well and leave to cool, then keep in the fridge until you are ready to serve. This will make more than you’ll need but will keep in the fridge for a week.

  • STEP 4

    Heat the oven to 180C/fan 160C/gas 4. Use half of the banana leaves (if using) to cover the base of a deep baking tray. Add the pork, spread out evenly and pour in any remaining marinade, then cover with the rest of the banana leaves, or with baking paper instead. Cover with foil or a lid and put in the oven for 2 hours. Once cooked, transfer the contents of the parcel to a large bowl, including the liquid, and shred using two forks.

  • STEP 5

    To serve, put the warm cochinita in a serving bowl. Put the pickled habanero, halloumi and limes in separate small bowls. Wrap the tortillas in foil, and heat them through in the oven. When you are ready to serve, remove them from the oven but leave them wrapped in the foil so that they do not dry out before serving. Fill each tortilla with some of the cochinita and top with the pickled habanero, halloumi and a squeeze of lime.

Create a feast with more Mexican-style recipes

Tacos Al Pastor Recipe


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