Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Make me some Mexican

Ok, so some people may say that I like to watch T.V.-me I like to think that I'm just par for the course. One of my favorite channels lately is the Foodtv. They have some serious hotties that work on there-oh and the food is good too. One of my favorite Mchottie is Tyler Florence. He's babe-a-licious go to for some yumminess!

Anyways, Tyler always makes killer food/recipes and this episode was for Mexican tacos. Yum-o as Rachael Ray (another Foodtv chef) would say. It looked super yummy and I wanted to try it the minute it got over. We invited some friends over on Saturday and made these. I was a little nervous about the spiciness to the recipe and even though it does have some kick once you added guacamole and salsa it was wasn't too spicy. Let's just say it was so yummy it was only because I literally could not stuff anymore in that I stopped eating. I am posting the recipe below in hopes that you can share the same yummy experience as us. We are DEFINITELY doing this recipe again sometime soon. I think it might be in my Top 5 recipes of all time.

*Some notes about the recipe below.
-I have never used Ancho chile powder and had to go to a specialty grocery store to find it. It wasn't anymore expensive that other herbs so don't be afraid to find it. I'm sure the recipe wouldn't be the same without it, but in a pinch regular chile powder would probably work too.
-San Marzano tomatoes-I also found these at AJ's fine grocery. They are pricey and I don't know if I can tell a difference. I guess these are the juiciest and best tomatoes out there, but I'm sure your regular store brand would work just fine too.
-Serrano and Jalapeno chile peppers-I started using these ingredients lately and they really aren't too hot. Just leave out the seeds (they contain a lot of the heat) the first time and adjust accordingly. Chile peppers do leave an oil on your fingers so please wash thoroughly after using and don't stick your finger in your eye. We've already had an incident in our house when Jordan didn't realize this and wondered why his eyes and nose were burning after sticking his finger in both orifices. I'm sure he'd tell you it hurt like he** (he'd say heck!).

Ok, so on for the recipes. They look more complicated that they are. I'm sure you could make the roast in the crock pot too on low after browning on both sides first.

Mexican Pot Roast Tacos
Recipe courtesy Tyler Florence, 2007

2 pounds beef shoulder
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, smashed
1 large onion, sliced
1 (28-ounce) can crushed tomatoes, (recommended: San Marzano)
1 tablespoon ancho chile powder
1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
1 tablespoon ground cumin
3 bay leaves
Vegetable oil, for deep frying
Corn Tortillas
Kosher salt
3 cups finely shredded white cabbage
Guacamole, recipe follows
Salsa, recipe follows
1/4 bunch fresh cilantro leaves

For the simple salsa:
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes, drained, reserving the juice (recommended: San Marzano)
1 small red onion, roughly chopped
1 Serrano chile
1 garlic clove, roughly chopped
2 limes, juiced
1/2 cup chopped cilantro leaves
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper

For the Guacamole: (I cut this recipe into a third and it worked well for 4 people)
6 ripe avocados
3 limes, juiced
1 medium yellow or red onion finely chopped
1 garlic clove, smashed then minced
2 serrano chiles, cut into rounds (I cut these a bit finer and not in rounds)
1 big handful fresh cilantro with stems, about 1/2 cup, finely chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Season all sides of the beef with a fair amount of salt and pepper. In a large Dutch oven, or other heavy pot that has a tight cover, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over moderately high heat. Add the garlic and the beef to the pot, browning the meat on all sides, taking the time to get a nice crust on the outside. Add the onion and allow to lightly brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Add the crushed tomatoes, plus 1 tomato can of water (to the side of the meat not on top of), spices, season with salt and pepper, to taste (on top of meat). Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer with a lid for 3 hours until the meat is fork tender. Let meat cool in the liquid. Shred meat and set aside.

Heat a large pot of oil over medium heat. When oil reaches 350 degrees F, fry the corn tortillas 1 at a time. Place the tortilla in the oil and wait about 30 seconds. Then use the handle of a wooden spoon to press down into the center of the tortilla and fold it in the middle. Hold down for a few seconds waiting for the tortilla to form into taco shell and then drain on paper towels. Season with salt.

For the simple salsa: To make salsa, pulse all the ingredients, except the tomato juice, in a food processor. Add the reserved tomato juice if the salsa is too thick. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside, allowing the flavors to marry.

For the guacamole: Halve and pit the avocados. With a tablespoon, scoop out the flesh into a mixing bowl. Mash the avocados using either a fork or potato masher, leaving them still a bit chunky. Add the remaining ingredients, and fold everything together. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper and give it 1 final mix with a fork. Lay a piece of plastic wrap tight on the surface of the guacamole so it doesn't brown and refrigerate for at least 1 hour before serving.

To assemble the tacos: Lay some shredded cabbage as a base. Top with some shredded beef. Serve alongside Guacamole and salsa. Garnish with fresh cilantro leaves.

1 comment:

Sam Spade said...

Have you watched "Shaq's Big Challenge" on Tuesday nights?? Tyler Florence is helping Shaq develop healthy kids meals for schools in Florida. That show has been cool to watch.