So in the course of looking around through the videos such as our last episode, I came upon a couple of different crock-pot recipes. Slow-cooking is underrated, especially for workin' folks. I may be unemployed, but between watching a one-year-old all day, blogging and working on job prospects, my cooking has suffered. So realistically, I should use our slow cooker much more than I do.
One of the best things I saw through all those recipes were a couple of different variations on crock-pot barbacoa. Now, Mexican barbacoa usually comes from head meat and...well...I have no idea how I'd even go about finding a cow's head. But a beef chuck roast serves as a pretty solid proxy.
Now, I have some experience working with chuck, even in the crock pot, and using a modified version of this Food.com recipe modeled on Chipotle's barbacoa, the only real difference is the liquid you cook the meat in.
But the result was some exquisite shredded beef for tacos.
One 3-5 lb beef chuck roast, cut into large chunks - almost like you're cutting it into steaks
5 cloves of garlic
4 chipotles chiles in adobo sauce
4 tsp ground cumin
4 tsp dried oregano leaves
4 tbsp lime juice
3 bay leaves
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 large onion, sliced
3/4 cup chicken broth
1/2 tsp ground cloves
1/3 cup apple cider vinegar
1. Combine the garlic, chipotles/adobo, cumin, oregano, lime juice, salt, pepper chicken broth, cloves and vinegar in a food processor. Pulse until well-blended and as smooth as you can get it.
2. In a large skillet or grill pan, brown your chuck roast and onions in a tablespoon or two of oil. You want to get a good sear on both the top and bottom of the steaks, and some caramelization on the onions. Not cooked all the way through, but a good brown sear with some crust. Huge for flavor whenever you're braising meat slowly like this.
3. Place the beef chunks and the bay leaves in the crock pot, cover with the liquid and set on low for 6 hours.
4. Once the crock pot goes off, shred the meats with two forks and use for tacos as you like. I love some avocado, black beans and some garlic-lime-cilantro rice. This should make enough meat for 4-6 people.