Roast Pork in Adobo with Garbanzo Beans & Cilantro Chimichurri

​​Source: Gino García

This might be a bit controversial, but I believe Mexican adobo has the power to make any dish instantly more delicious. 

Even though the recipe changes depending on the family and region of Mexico, adobo is a reliable flavor that always manages to create those deeply aromatic and complex flavors that we love experiencing in Mexican food. 

Complete with garbanzos and a tart-herby chimichurri, this recipe is no exception.

While the recipe isn’t necessarily complicated, it does require time to properly marinate and cook. That being said, the the flavor you’ll experience, will certainly be worth it. 

Pair it with a crisp salad or sautéed greens, and you’ll have a complete meal that you’ll want to keep coming back to!

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​​Source: Gino García

Roast Pork in Adobo with Garbanzo Beans & Cilantro Chimichurri

Prep Time: 12 hours (including overnight marinating)

Cook Time: 5 hours

Total Time: 17 hours

Yields: 8-10 servings

Adobo Ingredients

  • ‌10‌ ‌chile‌ ‌guajillo,‌ ‌stem‌ ‌and‌ ‌seeds‌ ‌removed‌ ‌

  • 4‌ ‌chile‌ ‌arbol,‌ ‌stem‌ ‌and‌ ‌seeds‌ ‌removed‌ ‌

  • 1‌ ‌cup‌ ‌yellow‌ ‌onion,‌ ‌coarsely‌ ‌chopped‌ ‌

  • 8‌ ‌garlic‌ ‌cloves,‌ ‌peeled‌ ‌

  • 1‌ ‌tablespoon‌ ‌oregano,‌ ‌preferably‌ ‌Mexican‌ ‌

  • ½‌ ‌teaspoon‌ ‌freshly‌ ‌ground‌ ‌black‌ ‌pepper‌ ‌

  • ½‌ ‌teaspoon‌ ‌ground‌ ‌cumin‌ ‌

  • ¼‌ ‌teaspoon‌ ‌ground‌ ‌cinnamon‌ ‌

  • 1‌ ‌dried‌ ‌bay‌ ‌leaf‌ ‌

  • ⅓‌ ‌cup‌ ‌white‌ ‌vinegar‌ ‌

  • Salt,‌ ‌to‌ ‌taste‌ ‌

Preparing the adobo

  1. Boil a pan of water and add prepared chiles.
  2. Turn heat off and cover pan for 10-15 minutes until chiles are rehydrated.
  3. Add chopped onion, garlic, dried spices, and rehydrated chiles to a blender and purée on high until smooth and fully combined.
  4. Add ¼ cup of chile soaking water slowly to slightly loosen up purée.
  5. Add vinegar and 1 tablespoon of salt to blender and pulse a few times.
  6. Taste and add more salt as needed (it should be on the saltier side).

Pork and Garbanzo Ingredients

  • 6-8 pound whole boneless pork shoulder, excess fat trimmed away

  • 1.5 cups dried garbanzos

  • 1 large yellow onion, halved

  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled

  • 2 dried bay leaves

  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

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​​Source: Gino García

Preparing pork and garbanzos

  1. Put pork shoulder in a large container (or the pot you’ll use to cook it in), pour over adobo and rub in marinade around pork, cover and put in refrigerator overnight (about 12 hours).
  2. Put garbanzos in a bowl and cover with plenty of cold water (Note: They’ll soak up a lot of water!). Leave on a counter to rehydrate overnight (about 12 hours). 
  3. The next day, preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  4. Add garbanzos to pork in a large, oven-safe pot or dutch oven with a lid.
  5. Add onion, garlic, and bay leaves to pot, along with enough cold water to completely cover garbanzos and two-thirds of the pork.
  6. Sprinkle salt and black pepper on top of the pork, cover with lid and cook for 4 to 5 hours, checking halfway to add more water if needed.

​​Source: Gino García

Cilantro Chimicurri Ingredients

  • 1 small bunch of cilantro, leaves and stems

  • ¼ cup parsley, leaves and tender stems only

  • 1 shallot, coarsely chopped

  • 1 serrano, coarsely chopped

  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled

  • 2 limes, zested and juiced

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • ¼ to ⅓ cup extra virgin olive oil

Preparing cilantro chimichurri

  1. While pork is cooking, combine all ingredients except olive oil in a food processor, pulse several times to break down ingredients, scraping down sides as needed.
  2. Transfer to a small bowl and whisk in half the amount of olive oil, then pour over enough oil to barely cover surface, taste and adjust seasoning as needed.
  3. Reserve while pork finishes cooking.‌

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​​Source: Gino García

Serving Ingredients

  • Roasted Pork in Adobo

  • Garbanzos

  • Cilantro Chimichurri

  • 5-6 red radishes, sliced thinly

  • Tortillas de maiz or warm baguette slices

Serving the roast pork in adobo

  1. Pull apart pork in large pieces and plate in large bowls.
  2. Spoon garbanzos around pork and about ½ cup of adobo broth into each bowl.
  3. Garnish generously with cilantro chimichurri and radish.
  4. Enjoy with tortillas or baguette.

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About the Author

Gino García

Gino García is based in Seattle, WA, originally from the California central valley, and has family roots in northern Mexico and the Mediterranean. He’s worked in restaurant kitchens, as a recipe developer and cooking instructor, and is an avid researcher and writer on regional Mexican cuisines. Gino has studied traditional Mexican techniques and flavors for many years, but loves to adapt dishes to local and seasonal produce available in the Pacific Northwest.

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