Authentic Cuban Street Tacos
I’ll bet MY tacos are better than the taco stand one’s…well I think so anyway, lol.
Have you ever tried the tacos from the food stands, or the food trucks that have the tacos? I would put these up in a contest ANY day!
Why? Because these tacos are made in a crock pot! WHAT? That’s right! Super fast, easy and make ahead. Perfect to take to a party, picnic, or for a relaxed night at home.
Now, let me tell you about the flavor. The citrus infuses a wonderful zest to brighten the meat. Then a balance of Cuban cuisine spices will give your taste-buds sheer delight!
These tacos are really simple, let me show you how on the next page!
Authentic Cuban Street Tacos
4 lb. boneless pork butt or top loin roast
1 Tbl. salt
3-4 Tbl. olive or vegetable oil
1 cup water 1 cup chicken broth
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 tsp. ground cumin
1 tsp. chili powder
1 tsp. dried oregano
2 bay leaves
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeno, minced (seeds removed unless more heat is desired)
1 onion, peeled and quartered Juice of
1 medium orange, halved and juiced, rinds reserved (try to scrap off the white from the orange outer layer with a spoon, as it causes a bitter taste)
Tortillas & Garnishes:
8 small corn or flour tortillas
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/2 cup chopped cilantro
Sour cream/avocados, if desired
1 cup Monterey jack cheese
2 limes, cut into wedges
Sprinkle the salt
Rub the pieces of pork all over with salt.Refrigerate for 1-2 hours.
When time is up, heat the oil in a dutch oven or heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, until the oil is shimmering and hot.
Add in the pork and sear on all sides; meaning brown really well all over.
Place the pork in the slow cooker – not shown.
Into the same pot used to sear the pork, pour in the water and chicken stock.
Then scraping the bottom of the pan with a flat-edged spatula or wooden spoon, get up all the delicious brown bits from the bottom.
Cut the onion into chunks.
Roll the orange on the counter with the palm of your hand; more juice is obtained from the fruit this way.
Do this also for the lime juice.
Juice the orange.
Then scrap out all the white pith you are able to at this point. We are going to add in the outer lay, as if we had zested the entire orange, so scrape it and make the shell as thin as possible – MUCH thinner than I did for a less bitter taste.
Do this same procedure with the lime – not shown.
Slice the jalapeno in half, scrape out the seeds (this is where the heat is) and dice small.
I keep disposable gloves on hand for this.
Caution not to touch your eyes or skin with any of the oils from the jalapeno on your fingers.
In same pot with the stock and scrapped up bits of meat, add in the pepper, cumin, chili powder, oregano, bay leaves, garlic, jalapeno, onion, to the lime juice, orange juice and now the orange rinds (remember to make it a thin shell) and bring to a simmer.
Pour this mixture over the pork, which is in the slow cooker/crock pot, and cook on low for 6-8 hours, or until the pork is very tender.
Remove the pork and place in a bowl; set aside.
Strain the bay leaves, onion, orange and lime rinds from the pot and discard.
Pour the liquid from the slow cooker into a pot on the stove and over high heat, bring the mixture to a boil.
Let the mixture boil until it reduces to about 1 cup and is slightly thickened, about 10-15 minutes.
Meanwhile, shred the pork and place on a large platter.
Spoon the reduced sauce over the pork.
Serve in tortillas, garnishing with the red onion, cilantro, sour cream, avocados, cheese and juice from lime wedge.
Recipe from “Cook’s” television program
Copyright Carrie Groneman, A Mother’s Shadow, 2014, 2016
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