Jerked pork is one of Jamaica’s most popular fast foods. For years my aunt, Ena ran a very successful Jerked Pork Stop in the parish of St. Mary, Jamaica.I was very fascinated with the flavor of her pork, so I asked her to teach me how to do it. She gladly agreed and travelled by bus to our home in the parish of St. Catherine for an overnight cook-out. It was exciting, to say the least. She and my mom seemed to transform into little girls again.
Between lively banter and burns from the coal fire, I learnt how to jerk using the boil and dry method (half-cooking the meat on the stove top and completing the cooking over hot coals. That night we did 10 pounds of pork. Little did we know though, that my aunt snored like a locomotive. At that time she weighed over 300 pounds and when she sat still for over 5 minutes she fell asleep. (In Jamaica being overweight is oftentimes seen as a sign of prosperity).
After she had done about 6 pounds of the pork, she sat for a spell, then she stated to snore. We believe the house shook when she snored. My mom tried waking her, but each time she shook her, she assured us that she wasn’t sleeping. She never budged though, and after we realized that her participation in the event was over, my mom and I decided to finish jerking the pork in the oven.
It tasted almost as good as Aunt Ena’s and we had a grand time sampling. Over the years, I have perfected my own version of Oven-Jerked Pork. It has become a hit at functions when I cater.
Photo Caption: Mouthwatering Oven-Jerked Pork, featured to the right of the image was a part of the menu for my 2014 birthday celebrations.