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Lechon de noche buena

My grandfathers noche buena lechon recipe that I grew up eating. Typically we roast the whole pig but in this recipe its a pork shoulder & you can just throw it in the oven thats perfect for all my home cooks. The crispy skin on the outside and tender fall off the bone meat filled with homemade mojo juices make this the best lechon recipe in my opinion. Save your leftovers to make the best Cubano you've ever had!


  • 5-8 Pds. pork shoulder, bone in

  • 1 cup fresh squeezed sour orange juice

  • 1/3 cup olive oil

  • 30 Garlic cloves (trust me)

  • 1 small onion

  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano

  • 1 tbsp. Cumin

  • 1 tbsp. salt (Plus the salt for salting the pork shoulder)

  • Pepper to taste


Combine all your ingredients in a blender & blend on high for 3-4 minutes.

Skin side up, using a knife make 3 large cuts until you hit the bone vertically then another 3 horizontally. Then make a bunch of deep cuts, forming little holes / pockets in your pork shoulder that are going to hold all of that delicious mojo & making sure the inside gets all the flavor too.

Generously and aggressively salt your entire pork making sure to massage the crazy amounts of salt in all of those little holes as well as in those slits we made earlier...really get the salt in there. If you think you added way too much salt, you did it right! Now, add your mojo all over the shoulder, skin side up. massage the pork again making sure to pour all that mojo everywhere and inside. Turn upside down, skin facing up and cover, and let this sit in the fridge for a minimum of 24 hrs.

Preheat the oven to 350 F. In a large and deep oven baking dish, place your marinated pork shoulder, with a napkin clean the pork skin making sure it has no mojo on it. Now tent it and cover with aluminum foil making sure the skin does not touch the aluminum foil because it will stick!! Bake at 350 F. Cooking it for 45min. for every pound. Once done, take off the aluminum foil, crank your oven to 425F. and cook another 20-25 min. until golden brown & crispy. Broil on low for another 5-6 min to ensure it was XTRAAAAA crispy! Make sure to keep your eyes on it while broiling so it doesn’t burn. Once ready, take your lechon out of the baking dish & place on a nice platter.


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