Haiti – Griot ~ Fried Pork
Griot is a popular street food in the Caribbean nation of Haiti. It is also served at parties and celebrations. It is a popular food server with cocktails. Griot is prepared by cooking pork pieces in a marinade prepared with sour orange juice or grapefruit juice, cooking it till tender and then deep frying it to get a crunchy and brownish texture. I could not find sour orange and used lime juice instead. Lamb or beef can also be used but those are called Tassot (pronounced tas’-oh)
I made these twice. The first time I made them, I pan roasted griot. As I mentioned in my Finnish Semolina Porridge post, the only self imposed restriction for this marathon is, no sweets and deep fried food. I stuck to it and pan fried griot. The second time I made them couple of weeks ago, I deep fried and I must admit, the deep fried griot were lot tastier than the pan fried/roasted griot. I did not plan on taking any pictures the second time around as I had already scheduled the post and was ok with the pictures I took the first time I made it. Just to show the texture and color of the fried griot, I took a quick picture with my point & shoot camera near my dining table before digging in. After tasting both roasted and deep fried griots, I recommend deep fried griots and Mr. U wants me make once in a while.
- 1.5 lbs. boneless Pork Butt or Shoulder Cut Picnic Pork or any cut of Pork (check note below)
- ¼ cup Onions (I used ½ white and ½ red onions but any variety would work)
- 3 Serrano Peppers chopped
- 1-2 tbsp. Parsley chopped
- 3 big Cloves Garlic
- 2 Cloves
- 1 Lime or 3 tbsp. of Lime Juice
- ¾ tsp. Black Pepper Powder
- ¾ tsp. Chili Powder
- 1 tsp. Salt
- Oil for deep frying
- Cut pork pieces into 1 ½ – 2” pieces. Shoulder cut pork had lot of fat and trimmed off half of that fat. Wash and keep aside. Most of the blogs called for washing the pork pieces with lime rind. I did not do it.
- Grind together onions, serrano pepper, parsley, cloves and garlic to paste. This can be a coarse paste too.
- Add lime juice, black pepper, salt and chili powder to ground onion serrano pepper mixture and mix well to make the marinade.
- Rub the marinade into the pork pieces and marinate it for at least 1 hour or overnight or up to 24 hours. I marinated it for about 5 hours.
- Cook marinated pork in a pressure cooker with ½ cup of water. I used Fagor pressure cooker and cooked it for 12 minutes on high or until meat is tender. Let the pressure release naturally. Pork can also be cooked in sauce pan for 45 minutes to 1 hour until the pork is tender. I have never cooked pork in a sauce and the time I mentioned is my guess based on what I have read in other blogs.
- Separate pork pieces from the juices and keep aside the juices. Juices/sauce can be served with rice.
- Place the pork pieces in a colander or a strainer to let the pieces dry a bit. If one wishes, rinse the pork pieces but I chose to use them as it is.
- Heat oil in skillet or deep fryer for deep frying griot/pork. Check note below.
- Add pork pieces gradually into hot oil and deep fry for 2 – 4 minutes turning them around until the pieces turn brown. If shallow frying or pan roasting the pork, take some oil and roast or shallow fry until pork turns brown in color.
- Serve with sliced onions as an appetizer with cocktails or as a side dish.
- The first time I made griot I used boneless pork butt and the second time I used shoulder cut picnic pork. Shoulder has bone in it and I asked the guy at the meat counter to remove the bone and cut the shoulder into pieces. I liked the shoulder cut pieces better than the pork butt.
- The first time I made the griot I pan roasted the griot in some oil. But I would recommend deep frying to get the real taste of griots as made in Haiti. Also, if pan roasting the griots, pressure cook the meat for no longer than 10 – 11 minutes. If deep frying, then pressure cook for 12 minutes. The meat was very tender and deep frying it made it crunchy on the outside and soft in the inside.