Shepherd's Tacos (Tacos al Pastor)

Is that a tumbleweed I see rolling across this blog space?

So here is something funny. Remember, remember in my last post when I was like 'back to normal life next week!' Anybody...anybody 'member that?

Well, first. THIS.

So I had the baby without any complications (except an insanely long labor of 18 hours ohmygod DON'T DO THAT!). And now we're back to normal.

EXCEPT THERE IS A BABY IN MY LAP AS I TYPE THIS! My arm might be smothering him a little. Sorry baby!

I like him a lot. I love him like crazy. Mother hormones are shooting through my veins like cocaine. All of that gets cancelled out at three in the morning though, I'll tell you what.

I'm a g-dang mom. Sleep deprived, starving, and thrilled that my belly button is concave once again.

And there is a child. And he is beautiful.

Here is a taco recipe. It is oh so good. It is called 'al pastor' which means 'shepherd tacos'. The running joke in Mexico as I recall is that, depending on what taco stand you get them from, you might end up with some German Shepherd tacos. If you know what I mean.

But these are not dog tacos. These are wonderful. And as close to the real thing as I can get here in the rainy northwest (if you want something done right you have to do it yourself).

Another nice thing about these tacos is that the "marinade" you soak the meat in is basically just a delicious red salsa. Dip your chips in it! Not after it had raw meat in it however.

Baby's waking up!

Tacos al Pastor (adapted again from Spicie Foodie - hooray!)

2.2 lbs pork, boneless, skinless and extra fat removed, chopped into bite size pieces
3 chile guajillos
2 chiles anchos
2 chiles de arbol (these can all be found dried in the Mexican aisle of almost any American grocery store)
1 tomato
1 t whole cumin seed
3 garlic cloves
1 small white onion, peeled and halved or 1/4 of large onion
pinch black pepper
1 t sea salt
1 cup fresh pineapple, finely chopped
corn tortillas
fresh finely chopped cilantro
fresh finely white onion
lime wedges

Boil about a quart of water. Turn off the heat, and soak chiles in hot water for 15 minutes. In mean time blacken the tomato, onion and garlic cloves on top of a hot griddle or grill. Place the tomato, onion and garlic cloves in the blender as well as the spices. Remove the chiles from the hot water and reserve the water. Remove the stems and seed from the chiles then place in blender. Add about 1/3 cup of the boiling water to the blender. Blend into a smooth salsa.

Place the bite size pork pieces inside a container. Pour the salsa over the meat. Stir until well combined, cover and place in the refrigerator overnight.

Next day, drain extra liquid from the meat. Heat a little bit of corn or vegetable oil in a large pan. Cook the pork until it has cooked all the way through. About 20 minutes. Allow to simmer under low heat until ready to serve.

Scoop a small amount into the middle of a corn tortilla, top with finely chopped onion, pineapple, cilantro and lime wedges on the side.


Cakebrain said...

eeeee! he's so cute!
I could almost smell "baby" looking at him! I remember those times. You must be still runnin' on adrenaline...being able to post on your blog! and take pics to boot! I recall I had a baby permanently attached to my armpits 24/7 for the first 3 months! I was so sleepy!
Best wishes to you (and baby) to get plenty of sleep in the next few months! cheers!

Quay Po Cooks said...

OMG! what an adorable baby. It is great that you can still type with your baby on your lap make such an awesome meal. Kudos to you!

a. maren said...

aw thanks guys! haha i have to confess i cooked these tacos BEFORE the birth...i am still trying to balance having a baby with, oh, you know, doing ANYTHING else! hopefully i'll find that balance soon...

Sweet Tooth said...

he looks sooo cute! congrats! :)

Ms. Cumming said...

18 hours--from what I hear and read about birth in hospitals, man, hah, however were you able to labor for 18 hours without being forced into a c-section for sake of convenience for the doctor? i think labors are supposed to be brutally long from start to finish, and some know it and others just want to go to bed already (doctors).

a. maren said...

ms cumming, i know right? luckily i had a midwife, even though i was in the hospital i still was able to work with a midwife and not an OB, so we avoided the knife. i know lots of women who were not so lucky. once you're on hospital turf you do what the bosses say, right? kinda bugs me.