If you’re a fan of crispy, savory snacks, you’ve probably heard of masitas de puerco fritas. These Cuban-style fried pork bites are a popular appetizer or snack that can be enjoyed on their own or as part of a larger meal. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at what makes masitas de puerco fritas so delicious, how they’re prepared, and some tips for making them at home.
What are Masitas de Puerco Fritas?
Masitas de puerco fritas are small pieces of pork that are marinated, seasoned, and then deep-fried until golden brown and crispy. The name “masitas de puerco” translates to “little pork cubes” in English, which is an accurate description of these tasty morsels.
The key to making great masitas de puerco fritas is in the seasoning. Cuban-style masitas are typically seasoned with a blend of garlic, oregano, cumin, and salt, which gives them a unique and delicious flavor that’s hard to resist.
How to Make Masitas de Puerco Fritas
If you want to make masitas de puerco fritas at home, you’ll need a few key ingredients and some basic cooking equipment. Here’s a simple recipe to get you started:
- 1 lb. pork shoulder, cut into small cubes
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp. dried oregano
- 1 tsp. ground cumin
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- 1/4 tsp. black pepper
- 1 cup vegetable oil, for frying
- In a large bowl, combine the pork cubes, garlic, oregano, cumin, salt, and black pepper. Mix well to coat the pork evenly with the seasoning.
- Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour (or up to overnight) to allow the flavors to meld together.
- When you’re ready to fry the pork, heat the vegetable oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat until it reaches 350°F.
- Using a slotted spoon, carefully add the pork cubes to the hot oil in batches, being careful not to overcrowd the pan.
- Fry the pork cubes for 4-5 minutes, or until they’re golden brown and crispy on the outside and cooked through on the inside.
- Remove the pork cubes from the oil with a slotted spoon and transfer them to a paper towel-lined plate to drain off any excess oil.
- Repeat with the remaining pork cubes until they’re all fried.
- Serve the masitas de puerco fritas hot with your favorite dipping sauce, if desired.
Tips for Making Perfect Masitas de Puerco Fritas
While making masitas de puerco fritas at home is relatively easy, there are a few tips you can follow to ensure that they turn out perfectly every time:
- Use a flavorful cut of pork: Pork shoulder is the best cut of meat to use for masitas de puerco fritas, as it’s both tender and flavorful.
- Marinate the pork for at least an hour: Allowing the pork to marinate in the seasoning mixture for at least an hour (or even overnight) will help to infuse it with flavor.
- Don’t overcrowd the pan: Adding too many pork cubes to the hot oil at once can cause the temperature to drop, resulting in less crispy and less evenly cooked pork.
- Drain off excess oil: Letting the fried pork cubes drain on a paper towel-lined plate for a few minutes after frying will help to remove any excess oil and keep them crispy.
Overall, masitas de puerco fritas are a delicious and satisfying snack that’s perfect for any occasion. Whether you’re entertaining guests or just looking for a tasty bite to eat, these crispy pork bites are sure to hit the spot. With a few simple ingredients and some basic cooking equipment, you can easily make your own masitas de puerco fritas at home and impress your family and friends with your culinary skills. So what are you waiting for? It’s time to fry up some masitas de puerco and enjoy!