Pernil: Puerto Rican pork shoulder like Kelis’s Grandma used to make

"Pernil is my favorite thing in the world. My grandmother made it. My mom made it. And now I make it."

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Kelis’sMilkshake” has been bringing all the boys to the yard since 2003. The 37-year-old has released six albums, has been nominated for two Grammys, and more recently has turned her mixes and beats to food. After graduating from Le Cordon Bleu, Kelis launched her line of Bounty & Full sauces and is now serving up brunch at pop-ups and food trucks around LA. She shares this special recipe from her new cookbook, “My Life on a Plate: Recipes From Around the World.”

Pernil is my favorite thing in the world. My grandmother made it. My mom made it. And now I make it. Make sure you get a pork shoulder with the skin on and bone in. When you slice into the roast, you see the gorgeous olives and garlic in every slice. I call for a 6- to 8-pound roast because I like to have leftovers for sandwiches, but make any size pernil you want. It’s hard to find large roasts sometimes, so put in a special order at your grocery store or butcher ahead of time. My butcher orders it for me every other month or so and texts me when it comes in.”


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All photos by David Loftus.