Claire Corlett

Fish Food, Fish Tanks, and More
Tacos Al Pastor Recipe

Tacos Al Pastor Recipe

Hey everybody, I’m Chef Tom
with All Things Barbecue and today we’re gonna be
making Tacos al Pastor. (whoosh)(splash)(drip) So al Pastor is probably
my favorite taco filling, and it’s a really cool dish, it’s a really cool example of fusion food. This is something that
the Lebanese population brought to Mexico way back in the day, and it’s just like their Swarma spits that they were doing at the time, but they’re using what
they had around them to make this brand new dish. So what we’re gonna do
today is take a pork butt, slice it nice and thin and we’re gonna let it
soak up this marinade. Now this marinade we’re gonna whip up is gonna include some Achiote paste as well as a Adobo sauce that
we’re gonna make from scratch, and then we’ll take all of that, thread it onto a spit and then we’re gonna cook
it on our JoeTisserie on the charcoal grill. Now of course authentic al
Pastor would be cooked on a spit uptight like this, with the heat source that browns the outside. We don’t have a grill that sits like that, so what we’re gonna do
is turn it sideways, normal rotisserie action
and it’s gonna take on the color from the fire and we’ll slice off the
layers as they cook. We’re gonna kick this thing off by toasting some dried
peppers for our Adobo sauce. Now these are Guajillo peppers. This is my favorite peppers
to use in chorizo as well. And then we’re also gonna
do some of these Chipotles. I got about two ounces of each. As these get a little toasted,
we’re gonna flip these over, brown ’em on the other side as well. This is just kinda waking everything up. You’ll notice that if you try to breathe right above it as well. So now what we’re gonna do is take all these seeds outta here. If you want it super spicy, you can go ahead and leave them in there. But they are gonna add a little bit of bitterness to the sauce. Alright, I left the skillet going, ’cause these peppers are
gonna go back in here to rehydrate now. So I’m just gonna break
em up a little bit, make this process go a little quicker. And then we wanna cover ’em with water. (water sizzles) Now I’m gonna let this come to a simmer, and then we’re gonna simmer
this for five minutes, which is going to rehydrate the peppers, so we can blend ’em down into our sauce. Alright these are all softened up. So we can get ’em out of this liquid, transfer them to the food processor. You can definitely do this
in a blender at home as well. And now we can begin to add the
remainder of the ingredients for the Adobo sauce. (knife chops) Gonna take half of this white onion, just kinda do a rough chop on it. It doesn’t need to be anything exact cause it’s going into the food processor. Here I have about an ounce of Piloncillo. This is essentially brown sugar. If you need to replace
it with something else, you could use brown sugar. Then we gotta a tablespoon
of ground cumin, tablespoon of Mexican oregano, tablespoon of thyme and a teaspoon of ground all-spice. Couple tablespoons of apple cider vinegar. And then I’d normally do
about two cloves of garlic, crushed up, but this one is massive, so we’re just gonna use one in here. And we’re gonna use a
couple different juices: pineapple juice because that
goes great with al Pastor, as well as some fresh orange juice. (orange squeeze) And last, throw in about
a teaspoon of salt. (food processor whirs) Man, that’s fantastic. That’s so earthy, get
the smokiness from the… Chipotles. It’s still a little bit rough, but I wanna scrape down the sides, make sure we’re working everything in. (food processor whirs) Mm, smells awesome. Beautiful. Pinch more salt and we’re perfect. (food processor whirs) Now that the Adobo sauce is finished, we can whip up the rest of the marinade. This the Achiote paste
that we’re gonna use, and this is something
you can make from scratch if you want to. But you can find this pre-made at your local Mexican market. And of course y’know, the Adobo
sauce, kinda the same thing. You wanna make it from
scratch, that’s awesome. You can always grab that even at your local big-box grocery stores, some Chipotles and some Adobo sauce. So this is fourteen
ounces of Achiote paste. Kinda mash this up and start
adding the other ingredients. I’m gonna add a half cup
of apple cider vinegar, and a half cup of olive oil. Kinda mix this around and let
that paste dissolve a bit. Look at that beautiful vibrant red color. That’s gonna end up on the
pork, it looks fantastic. Now I’m gonna start adding my Adobo sauce. Here’s a couple of cups of Adobo, mix that up, see how it looks. (whisks) Really nice color. Let’s see how it tastes. That’s about what we’re going for. I’ve got a little bit
of extra Adobo sauce, I’m just gonna dump that in there. Got that all mixed in, I’m gonna go grab our pork
butt and start slicing. This pork butt’s been in the
freezer for about four hours, so it’s not frozen but it’s cold enough that it should make slicing
it thin pretty easy. I’m gonna take this fat cap off. It’s just a little bit
more fat than what we need. And then what I’m gonna do is try and find where that bone is. Alright so bone here, if I go a little bit further I can see that I can get
all the way through there. So I can take this half of the pork butt, and slice this real easy
to fit onto that spit rod. This half we’re gonna have
to work with a little bit, work around this blade bone. But we’ll still be able to get some good slices outta this too. Now the great thing is this is not gotta be
any part of presentation so you don’t have to be too
pretty with your cutting. The goal really is just to get as much surface area as possible so we can get some good size slices. So I’m gonna begin to make these slices, probably about a half inch thick. The great thing about this dish is that these slices are all
gonna be pressed together, so like I said: you don’t have to be too pretty with your slices. And you’re gonna be shaving off just a small amount at a time. I mean imagine these all
stacked on top of one another. It doesn’t matter that they’re
not all the same shape, because we’re just taking
off the outside edge slowly as it cooks. Now we’re gonna combine everything that we’ve worked on up until this point. We’re gonna put a little
bit of our marinade down in a dish, spread that out and start layering in the pork. Wanna do our best to make
sure that every bit of this surface of the pork is
exposed to this marinade and that will allow the
marinade to penetrate the best. Alright and at this point, this is gonna go into the refrigerator. You wanna let the pork
soak in the marinade in the refrigerator for at least an hour before you move onto the next step which will be skewering this and actually getting it onto the grill. Before we get this pork
threaded onto that spit rod, we need to get our pineapple cleaned up, ’cause a little bit of this is gonna go onto that spit rod as well. So I’m just gonna square
off the top and the bottom. Now this will sit flat for us, and we can cut off this spiky exterior. Make you don’t get any
of those left in there ’cause they’ll get stuck in your throat and it’s not pleasant. Alright, now I wanna quarter this. (knife chops) And these middle sections
I’m gonna set aside. The top and the bottom are
gonna go onto the skewer and all of the pork
will fill up in between. I’m just gonna start
pulling these slices of pork out of the marinade and I’ll wipe off the excess. Transfer them over to this dish. Don’t be afraid to leave
some of that on there though, there’s tons of flavor in there. It’s more than just a marinade, it’s really a seasoning agent. Alright so once you’ve filled
up the bottom of the pan, you can hit it with a
little bit of seasoning. What we’re using today
is the Cattleman’s Grill Carne Asada seasoning so you know a bit chili flavor. Some salt in there. Alright and then we can
work on our next layer. Let’s kick this off, like I said, with the cap from the pineapple. Skewer that into place down here. And then we can start
stacking our pork on. And the great thing about these little prongs here at the end is that they can kinda allow
you to stretch the pork out so it’s as even as possible. Once you’ve got this thing filled up, you can throw the other end
of the pineapple on here. And cinch that in nice and tight. And this is ready to go on the grill. Have you seen these parts that
are kinda flapping around? Don’t worry about that. They’re gonna get cooked up really quick and we’re gonna take them off
as soon as they’re browned. We’ve got the Kamado Joe
set up for direct grilling so those coals are going to
cook the outside very quickly. In fact we’re gonna keep peeking at this, probably every five to ten minutes, and see how it’s browning on the outside, and as the first layer browns, we take our knife and shave it off, catch it underneath, pull it off and keep it warm while the
rest of it continues to cook. Woo. Look at that color. Beautiful. Alright, so here’s the plan. Gonna slide this wok underneath here. You guys don’t have one
of these, that’s fine. Use a tray or a foil
pan or whatever it is. So just these brown bits on the outside. And this first batch you take off is always a little bit sloppy, because not everything is even yet. But as we form this, as we cut this off, it becomes more uniform and even easier to shave off of here. You guys will see that
as we continue to cut. Now of course this is designed so that can serve hot
food for a period of time. This may take an hour or so total for us to shave everything down. So this is ideal for larger gatherings where you’re feeding people throughout a longer period of time. And what’s really cool
is with this wok in here it’s getting nice and hot so it crisps up that
meat as it falls down, and then we can slide it back out of there and serve it hot straight out of this wok. (meat sizzles) So I’m gonna take this middle
section of the pineapple that we’ve reserved and dice
it up to go onto the tacos. (knife chops) We’re still rolling
right around 500 degrees and it’s about every ten minutes or so that we’re coming out here
to slice off each layer. You can see how much more uniform this is becoming now as we shave it down, which is great because it cooks just a little bit more evenly and we get a more even amount
that’s coming off each time. So let’s say you’re in the kinda situation where you wanna serve this all at once. Well what you wanna do is do this ahead, earlier in the day and collect all that meat in
the small bite-sized pieces. Then when you’re ready to serve it, go ahead and throw it into a hot skillet with a little bit of oil
to get it crisp again and to bring the temperature up. (knife chops) Alright so we’re building our tacos now that our al Pastor done. We’re gonna hit it with a
little red onion as well. Beautiful color, beautiful texture. Love the crunch from the red onion. Gotta have the sweetness of
the pineapple in there as well. Little bit of cilantro for some greenery, and of course the wonderful aroma. And those are good to go. (chomp) Mm. I love the way that the
pineapple is bright and sweet, contrasts that nice savory pork flavor. I love every bit of it. All I’m missing is a cold beer and it’s a good night. Thanks so much for watching. If you enjoyed the video, please
hit that subscribe button. And if you have any questions or comments or there’s anything you’d
like to see me cook, let me know in the comment
section down below. For more recipes, tips and techniques, head over to All things barbecue, where
barbecue legends are made.

100 comments on “Tacos Al Pastor Recipe

  1. You are a wonderful teacher. Not only are your recipes great, but you walk thru and hand hold your viewers each step of the process. I finally subscribed tonight and am glad I did. thumbs up……again.

  2. Wow great recipe!! Missing the salsa though lol but still really well made!! Hope you can make a vid on how to make some good tacos de brisket!! And if possible a salsa too 🙂

  3. The place I used to go had pineapples placed between the meats as well. This way, as it was being sliced, bits of pineapples fell off too. You should try grilling some cactus, onions, and jalapenos on the side to eat with the tacos.

  4. Looks delicious as always!! Only disadvantage I can think of with regards to roasting it horizontally instead of vertically is that the pineapple really doesn't gets to "unleash it's potential" as the juices drip down off the skewer instead of running down through the meat.

  5. I made this recipe and followed the instructions and this was just out of this world. I grilled the pork on a 22 weber kettle with the rotisserie and put a 12” leave cast iron pan underneath when I was cutting off the bits. Awesome technique all the way from start to finish.

  6. Take this from a Mexican chef and a lover of street food in my beautiful México, you sir did a great job on making tacos al pastor in every single way, from the marinade to the way you cooked it and sliced it along the way!. Best video of an american guy making authentic tacos al pastor!

  7. I like tacos al carbon.but you need hot salsa avocado limones and tortillas de maiz…but i approved yours tacos al carbon…have a nice day chef …

  8. Great!! Remember adobo paste and al pastor marinating sauce are different, the second one has many more different spices than axiote and Chilis, like cinnamon, etc. One is from Northern Mexico called adobada tacos, the al pastor tacos are from Mexico city and a slice of pineapple are added. Arabs do not eat pork, it is the Mexicans that created this marinated beef taco, inspired by the Lebanese migrants food

  9. Love the vids! Great quality shoots and editing! What’s the deal w the out of synch audio, though?

  10. So many things wrong with how you assembled the final product, it’s actually pretty sad, especially when a Mexican tells you so. Disappointing video tbh

  11. As a Mexican I can say that's a good way to cook it, but you are missing a very important part to finish your tacos… A good hot spicy green or red sauce, every taco need its salsa, just as we need the air to breath hahaha, and lemon, always add lemon to your tacos!!!

  12. I love al pastor and can’t wait to do these. Does anyone have a recipe for Taco El Gordo’s (TJ and San Diego, Vegas) green salsa? I believe it’s some type of avocado dressing (no, it isn’t quac). Thanks!

  13. Great recipe, but I want to add why vertical grilling is important: if you turn the spit horizontally, the fat will end up in the grill and the meat will dry out faster. With vertical grilling, the fat runs down along the meat, keeping it moist and allows for a slower cooking method, which utlimately results in a more tender, flavorful meat.

  14. Chef Tom, could you make a lamb or chicken doner? I'm guessing it'd be similar, but I'd love the flavor profile and the sauce I'm sure you'd nail.

  15. Amazing cook…How about adding a wood chuck for smoky flavor..I'm sure it does not need anything else…Again, it looks amazing.

  16. All that work and you use a flour tortilla? Blasphemy! Excellent recipe though. I’d love to try it on my rotisserie.

  17. So not only is this recipe delicious I used it in a food competition and took first place. I had to cook everything in a wok. I also made homemade tortillas and a green salsa with Mexican street corn. Thank you for this video it got me a spot to compete in the world food championships. I modified it with pork tenderloin for the hot and fast. Love your videos.

  18. awesome recipe, some hot salsa and two or three drops of lemon on those tacos is the way to go for most of méxico city people.

  19. New to your YouTube site and I'm instantly hooked. I can't wait to find out what else you've made. So far it appears you're willing to take on some pretty challenging or extravagant dishes. Being from Phoenix, Al Pastor is one of my favorites. Another Mexican favorite I'd love to see you take on is pork Carnitas. I love the slight sweet garlicky flavor with the crispy caramelized outer crust, almost like burnt ends. When it's done right, it's amazing! While I'm making suggestions on your Al Pastor video, watching the meat turn on the rotisserie makes me think of another favorite. It would awesome if you made a homemade Gyro. I look forward to seeing if you take on the challenge and I'll keep watching for your other amazing dishes!

  20. If I use store bought adobo sauce, how much with the achiote paste? Will it need any other ingredients like garlic, salt and pinnacle juice?

  21. Everything was going great until the flour tortillas came into play, thats a big NO, tacos go with corn tortillas

  22. I think I saw him eating those tacos 🌮 with flour tortillas… I never had them with flour tortillas, maybe I should to see what they’re like and then I’ll have an informed opinion on it.

  23. Everything was right up to the moment you put the meat on top of a flour tortilla. That's just sacrilege. All tacos are made with corn tortillas.

  24. I appreciate your fine efforts here. One important question that has not been addressed though. How do you continue to shave off the cooked meat now that you've gotten down to the rotisserie spikes?

  25. "Those are good to go"

    Ah, ah, ah. No taco is complete without a good salsa, my friend. You could have taken that to yet another level!

    Otherwise, that looked delicious. Been wanting to do something like this but I don't have a rotisserie. Need to get creative.

  26. Love the chunks of pineapple on the taco. And just tossing the cilantro on. no chopping. Brilliant I could hear the crunch I’m making this

  27. The pineapple is kinda pointless for this cooking method because doing it sideways you don’t have the juices falling up and down. It’s sideways and the juices don’t touch the meat. But still looks amazing

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *