Pork Picadillo

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 50 min
  • Prep: 20 min
  • Cook: 30 min
  • Yield: 4 to 6 Servings
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3 tablespoons olive oil

12 ounces ground pork

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon dried oregano leaves

1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper

1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

1/2 cup chopped yellow onion

1 tablespoon minced garlic (about 3 cloves)

3 tablespoons tomato paste

2 tablespoons cider vinegar

1 1/2 tablespoons light brown sugar

1/4 cup currants

4 teaspoons chopped green olives

1 tablespoon capers, drained

1 cup water

Tostones, recipe follows, for serving

Fresh Salsa, recipe follows, for serving


2 green plantains

Vegetable oil, for frying


Fresh Salsa

3 tablespoons fresh cilantro leaves

1 cup cherry tomatoes

1/4 small onion, chopped

1/2 jalapeno, seeded and stemmed

1 clove garlic

2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. Heat the olive oil in a medium nonstick skillet over high heat. Combine the ground pork, cumin, cinnamon, salt, oregano, crushed red pepper, and allspice, and cook, using a spoon to break up any clumps, until the meat is golden brown and cooked through, about 6 minutes. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add the tomato paste, vinegar, brown sugar, currants, olives, and capers, and stir to thoroughly combine. Stir in the water and reduce the heat to medium. Continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is very thick and the flavors have come together, about 15 minutes. Serve the pork with Tostones and Fresh Salsa, recipes follow, if desired.


  1. Tostones:
  2. Heat the oil to 360 degrees F.
  3. While the oil is heating up, cut the green plantains into 1-inch thick slices and then peel them. Fry the slices in the hot oil for 3 minutes. They should be a light golden color and semi-soft.
  4. Remove the plantain slices with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.
  5. When the plantain slices are cool enough to handle (about 1 minute), between paper towels, smash them into flat rounds using the bottom of a glass. Fry the rounds in the hot oil for another 3 minutes. They will turn crisp and golden brown.
  6. Remove the tostones with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels. Salt them as soon as they come out of the oil.

Fresh Salsa

  1. Fresh Salsa:
  2. Combine the cilantro leaves, tomatoes, onion, jalapeno, garlic, olive oil, salt, and pepper, to taste in a mini food processor and blend until the desired consistency is reached.
  3. Serve as a condiment.