| Prep Time: 10 mins
| Cook Time: 1 hour 15 mins
| Total Time: (ideally) overnight
You may need: Dried Garlic Powder
One of the best known Cuban dishes is Lechon Asado (Lay-CHON Ah-SAW-dough), a marinated pork roast. While the pork can be oven-roasted or even slow-cooked until it falls apart, we modern (busy) home chefs need a recipe that can be prepared quickly, then cooked without much oversight (we have things to do!). Our Cuban Mojo Marinated Pork recipe offers the best of both worlds: a vibrant, herbaceous-citrusy-garlicky flavor of Cuba and less than 15 mins of prep time (and < 1.25 hours of cooking time).
The key to developing max flavor for this roast is to marinate the pork overnight. The marinade is known as Mojo Criollo (MOE-hoe Cree-OY-yo) and is traditionally made with sour oranges, mint, herbs, and plenty of garlic. Sour oranges are hard to find unless you live in South Florida or near a Caribbean market. So, we use a combo of fresh lime juice and fresh orange juice to recreate the natural sweet-sour. Use our Cuban Mojo spice blend as the flavor seed for your marinade. If you’re in a time pinch, you can try marinating in a few hours. However, we recommend you plan a day ahead for this recipe – you won’t regret it! You can also use the same marinade recipe to make a a flavor-bomb salad dressing or use as a marinade on chicken, shrimp, or roasted eggplant.
2-3 lbs pork roast (boneless loin roast or boneless shoulder roast)
1.5 tsp salt (optional) + pepper
3/4 cup fresh orange juice (~2 oranges) + zest
1/2 cup fresh lime juice (~4 limes) + zest
1 cup cilantro, finely chopped
1/4 cup lightly packed mint leaves, finely chopped
5-8 garlic cloves, peeled then smashed with knife (adjust amount of garlic to your taste)
3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tbsp Piquant Post Cuban Mojo spice
The marinade (all ingredients except pork in this recipe) is known in Cuba as ‘Mojo Criollo’. See below for lots of other ideas for how to use this in other dishes.
Adjust the number of cloves of raw garlic to taste, especially if using the marinade (Mojo Criollo) as a dressing or sauce.
Use a food processor for the fastest marinade prep. If you don’t have a food processor, use a chef knife to finely chop the garlic, mint, and cilantro.
If you can find Caribbean sour oranges, definitely use them for the most authentic taste. But fresh orange and lime juice work great to achieve the sweet sour combo.
Lastly, optional ingredients add a little character and flavor but don’t sweat it if you don’t have them.
Season pork roast with salt & pepper. Prep all the fresh ingredients.
For those with a food processor, add the orange juice, lime juice, cilantro, mint, and garlic and pulse for 10-30 secs until everything is finely cut and mixed. Add the mixture to a large ziploc bag (or non-reactive bowl). Add the olive oil, zest, Cuban Mojo spice to the bag and with bag sealed, swish around to mix the ingredients. Marinate the pork in the fridge ideally overnight (or at least an 2 hours if rushed) *Note: if you don’t have a food processor, mince the garlic, then finely chop cilantro and mint before adding all ingredients to the ziploc bag (or bowl).
Remove pork from fridge. Pre heat oven to 425 deg. Place roast on a wire rack with drip pan underneath. Discard marinade juice.
Cook pork on 425 for 30 mins. Reduce heat to 375 deg and cook for 40-45 more mins or until internal temp reaches 160. Slice against the grain into 1/2″ thick cuts and serve with mixed greens & citrus dressing.
Our Cuban Mojo spice blend is the easiest starter kit for making a ‘Mojo Criollo’, the essential Cuban citrus-garlic marinade/dressing. This Mojo Criollo marinade is so versatile and can be used any number of ways, including directly as a salad dressing or dipping sauce.
Don’t eat pork? Try the Mojo Criollo marinade with chicken. Roast in a deep walled oven-roasting pan and try basting the chicken as you roast it.
For a Mexican-Cuban fusion that is to die for, try our delicious Cuban Mojo Carnitas (shredded pork) recipe.
Make roasted veggies and use the marinade as a dipping sauce!
Marinate fish filets and then pan or oven roast. Or try making a Mojo Shrimp recipe.
If you’re using the marinade directly as a dressing, adjust the marinade recipe to scale for the amount you want to use in the next 24-48 hours for max freshness. Also, you may want to adjust the amount of raw garlic to your taste.
Vegetarians/Vegans have ample ways to use the mojo criollo beyond a salad. Try marinating tofu steaks then baking in the oven for Cuban Mojo Tofu. Make savory Mojo Roasted Portobello Steaks. Or, toss the marinade with stir-fried veggies for a Mojo Stir-Fry!
Post pictures of your masterpiece meal on social media and tag us. We repost!