Choose a bone-in pork shoulder sized for the amount of guests you’ll be serving (one pound per person). Either trim or ask your butcher to trim the meat to leave as much of the fat cap on the meat as possible. This will ensure the most flavorful and tender finished product.
Let the meat come to room temperature at least one hour prior to preparing. You can lightly score the fat cap to reduce the cooking time by 25 percent. Preheat oven to 225 degrees.
To make the dry rub, source the freshest ingredients possible. Using a mortar and pestle, grind the ingredients to a uniform grain without any large pieces. To save time, pulse in a spice or coffee grinder. Store in a mason jar or airtight container and keep in the pantry for up to one month.
Dust both sides of the pork with one half of the dry rub mixture. Place seasoned pork with the fat cap up into a perforated pan and leave uncovered to create a ‘bark’ and give the pork a smoky flavor. A disposable turkey pan from the grocery store works well if you don’t have a perforated pan at home. Cook for 1½ hours per pound and dust pork with remaining dry rub half way through the cook time.
Remove from oven, tent with foil and allow the meat to rest in its own juices for two to three hours prior to slicing. Serve in tacos, sandwiches or simple slices with seasonal vegetables.