Slow Cooker Carne Guisada

If you have never heard of carne guisada, well now you have. It is essentially stewed meat, and typically done with pork, it can be done with chicken, or beef, and in my case, pork. It’s one of those comfort foods that everyone can identify with, and one that is super versatile as it can be used in tacos, enchiladas, burritos, or event stand on its own. This is my take on a slow cooker carne guisada, as one I was pinched for time during the work week, and two, who doesn’t love the slow cooker?

Slow Cooker Carne Guisada Tacos

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds of boneless pork ribs, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 whole onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped, seeds removed
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt, to taste
  • 2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp Mexican oregano
  • 1 whole tomato, chopped
  • 1/2 cup water
  • flour tortillas, warmed, optional
  • fresh cilantro, optional
  • hot sauce, optional

Start by heating a large skillet on medium-high heat. Once heated, add in the oil, and let it come to temperature for about 10 seconds. Add the pork, and sear the pork on each side. Once seared, place the pork into your slow cooker. Return the skillet to the stove, and toss in the chopped onion. Cook for about 2 minutes, then add in the water to deglaze the skillet. Pour everything into the slow cooker.

With the remaining ingredients, with the exception of the tortillas, cilantro, and hot sauce, add to the slow cooker, and give everything a cook stir. Cover, and cook on low heat for 7 hours.

Carne Guisada Ingredients

Before serving, I like to lightly shred the pork, however leaving some cubes together. Now you can go ahead and serve as is, but I like to sear mine on the stove once again. So what I do is add a skillet on medium-high heat to the stove. Next I add in however much carne guisada I think will hold with two tacos, and mixing it around for a couple of minutes until some of the pork caramelizes, and some of the juices run clear.

Add to the warmed tortillas, and dig in.

Words can’t explain how awesome this meat mixture is. It’s super tender, and just loaded with great spices and flavor. It’s a definite winner for tacos, that’s for sure. So if you are looking to steer away from your standard taco meat, give this one a shot. Hope you enjoy!

Slow Cooker Carne Guisada
Author: 
Recipe type: Tacos, Stews
Cuisine: Mexican
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds of boneless pork ribs, roughly chopped
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • 1 whole onion, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, chopped, seeds removed
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1 tsp salt, to taste
  • 2 tsp cumin powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • ½ tsp Mexican oregano
  • 1 whole tomato, chopped
  • ½ cup water
  • flour tortillas, warmed, optional
  • fresh cilantro, optional
  • hot sauce, optional
Instructions
  1. Start by heating a large skillet on medium-high heat. Once heated, add in the oil, and let it come to temperature for about 10 seconds. Add the pork, and sear the pork on each side. Once seared, place the pork into your slow cooker. Return the skillet to the stove, and toss in the chopped onion. Cook for about 2 minutes, then add in the water to deglaze the skillet. Pour everything into the slow cooker.
  2. With the remaining ingredients, with the exception of the tortillas, cilantro, and hot sauce, add to the slow cooker, and give everything a cook stir. Cover, and cook on low heat for 7 hours.
  3. Before serving, I like to lightly shred the pork, however leaving some cubes together. Now you can go ahead and serve as is, but I like to sear mine on the stove once again. So what I do is add a skillet on medium-high heat to the stove. Next I add in however much carne guisada I think will hold with two tacos, and mixing it around for a couple of minutes until some of the pork caramelizes, and some of the juices run clear.
  4. Add to the warmed tortillas, and dig in.

 

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Beef Cheek Tacos

I have been thinking about making tongue tacos lately. I know, many might think of this being gross, however if you have never ordered ‘lengua’ from your local tacqueria, well you are missing out. The great thing about using other cuts of beef are that they are not only tender, but the beef flavor escalates into something extraordinary, and to me that is pretty awesome. So this past weekend when I was shopping for both Asian and Mexican ingredients, and devouring some great tacos from El Rey in Milwaukee, I decided to browse around and try to find tongue. They had pork tongue, but not beef, but with that said, I saw this great package of beef cheeks. I was all in.

How to make Beef Cheek Tacos

I was not going to let my family know what I was making, and as far as they knew, it was just beef. If I mentioned beef cheeks, I knew that they would probably hesitate, and back out from trying it. So the night before, I decided to brine it, as I would have if making beef tongue. Trust me on this one, find and make beef cheeks.

Let’s get started.

Ingredients for the Brine:

  • 6 cups of water
  • 1 lime, cut in half, squeezed
  • 1 orange, cut in half, squeezed
  • 1 whole guajillo chili, stem and seeds removed
  • 1 whole dried chipotle chili
  • 1 whole puya chili
  • 1/2 cup of sugar
  • 1 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 lbs of beef cheeks, fat trimmed

Ingredients for the tacos:

  • 2 cups of water or beef stock
  • 2 tbsp canola oil
  • fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1/2 avocado, diced
  • 1 whole lime, cut into quarters
  • warmed flour tortillas

Make your brine by adding everything but the beef cheeks to a stock pot. Bring to a simmer, stirring along the way, ensuring you dissolve the salt and sugar. Once dissolved, remove from the heat, and let it cool.

Beef Cheek Tacos

Add the beef cheeks to a large sealable bag and pour in the cooled brine. Seal and place in the refrigerator overnight.

The following day, pour out the brine, and add the beef cheeks to a large saute pan or dutch oven. Add about 2 cups of water or beef stock, bring to medium heat, cover, and cook for about 3 hours. Reduce the heat to a medium-low once it comes to a boil.

Beef Cheek Tacos

After 3 hours, remove the beef cheeks onto a plate, and let them cool. Once cooled, slice and then chop the beef cheeks.

When you are about ready to serve, heat a large skillet on medium-high heat and add in the oil. Add as much beef cheeks as you want, and cook until those beef cheeks get a nice sear on them. You want to get that great crispiness on it.

How to make beef cheek tacos

When you are ready to serve, add the beef cheeks to a warm and toasted tortilla, top with fresh cilantro, minced shallot, a bit of avocado and a squeeze of lime juice. Repeat.

My son, who is now getting into onions, and one that was lingering around when I was making these tacos, tried one (I was surprised as he was not a fan of avocado, but was convinced by my sell) and devoured it.  These beef cheek tacos are probably now my favorite, and I do not kid you when I say that. The texture was spot on, and the beefiness escalated from that of skirt or flank steak, plus a heck of a lot cheaper.  Give these a shot if you are looking from some really great beef tacos. Hope you enjoy!

Beef Cheek Tacos
Author: 
Recipe type: Tacos
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
Ingredients
  • Ingredients for the Brine:
  • 6 cups of water
  • 1 lime, cut in half, squeezed
  • 1 orange, cut in half, squeezed
  • 1 whole guajillo chili, stem and seeds removed
  • 1 whole dried chipotle chili
  • 1 whole puya chili
  • ½ cup of sugar
  • 1½ tbsp salt
  • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
  • 2 lbs of beef cheeks, fat trimmed
  • Ingredients for the tacos:
  • cups of water or beef stock
  • Brined Beef Cheeks
  • tbsp canola oil
  • fresh cilantro, roughly chopped
  • shallot, minced
  • /2 avocado, diced
  • whole lime, cut into quarters
  • warmed flour tortillas
Instructions
  1. Make your brine by adding everything but the beef cheeks to a stock pot. Bring to a simmer, stirring along the ways, ensuring you dissolve the salt and sugar. Once dissolved, remove from the heat, and let it cool.
  2. Add the beef cheeks to a large sealable bag and pour in the cooled brine. Seal and place in the refrigerator overnight.
  3. The following day, pour out the brine, and add the beef cheeks to a large saute pan or dutch oven. Add about 2 cups of water or beef stock, bring to medium heat, cover, and cook for about 3 hours. Reduce the heat to a medium-low once it comes to a boil.
  4. After 3 hours, remove the beef cheeks onto a plate, and let them cool. Once cooled, slice and then chop the cheeks.
  5. When you are about ready to serve, heat a large skillet on medium-high heat and add in the oil. Add as much beef cheeks as you want, and cook until those beef cheeks get a nice sear on them. You want to get that great crispiness on it.
  6. When you are ready to serve, add the beef cheeks to a warm and toasted tortilla, top with fresh cilantro, minced shallot, a bit of avocado and a squeeze of lime juice. Repeat.

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Spicy Beef and Kimchi Tacos

Recently I made a stop at one of my favorite taquerias in town, El Rey Supermercado, as I normally do, and decided to shop around for a few minutes after I had a delicious taco lunch. Often times when I go there, I load up on limes, chilies, avocados, and corn tortillas, but this time around I loaded up on fresh fruits, and meat. I can say I get a bit intimidated when ordering from their butcher as my ten years or so of Spanish is a bit weak, but heck, I give it a try every single time.  One thing that stood out to me while I was browsing was these great beef ribs that we thinly sliced.

When I arrived home that evening, I decided to come up with a kimchi style beef rib, only to be slow cooked overnight, and chopped into a killer beef for tacos.

Spicy Beef and Kimchi Tacos

If you have never had beef that is cooked with peperoncinis, well, that is a must, but cooking beef with kimchi just elevated that whole recipe. Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs beef short ribs
  • 6 sport peppers
  • 2 cups spicy kimchi
  • 1/2 cup water
  • flour tortillas
  • 1 jalapeno chili, thinly sliced
  • 1 shallot, minced

This recipe is so easy, only because you can do this in your slow cooker. You could braise this in your oven if you would like, but who doesn’t love a slow cooker, right?

Start by adding the water, beef short ribs, sport peppers, and kimchi to your slow cooker. Give a gentle stir, then cover, and cook for 8 hours.

When you are ready to prepare your tacos, carefully remove the beef short ribs from the slow cooker and place them on a large platter. Your goal here is to remove all of the bones. As you can see in my photo, there are plenty of bones to remove.

How to make Spicy Beef and Kimchi Tacos

Trim any excess fat, then chop the beef ribs. Once chopped, add the beef back to the kimchi mixture, and give a good stir.

Heat a skillet on medium heat. To another skillet, lightly toast the flour tortillas, just until they get a bit of  char, the place them on a place, and cover them to keep warm.

To the skillet, add some of the beef mixture, and get a nice sear on the beef, then place the beef mixture into each tortilla and top with the shallots and jalapeno chili.

Dig in. The flavors will blow you away. Not overly spicy, but you get this great, almost sweet, flavor from that kimchi. No one would know, but you, if there was even kimchi in this dish as it mellows out in the cooking process. These tacos might be one of my favorites now, and if you know me, I love tacos. So the next time you are near a Mexican supermarket, stop in, look around, and pick up some beef short ribs! Hope you enjoy!

Spicy Beef and Kimchi Tacos
Author: 
Recipe type: Tacos
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
Ingredients
  • 2 lbs beef short ribs
  • 6 sport peppers
  • 2 cups spicy kimchi
  • ½ cup water
  • flour tortillas
  • 1 jalapeno chili, thinly sliced
  • 1 shallot, minced
Instructions
  1. Start by adding the water, beef short ribs, sport peppers, and kimchi to your slow cooker. Give a gentle stir, then cover, and cook for 8 hours.
  2. When you are ready to prepare your tacos, carefully remove the beef short ribs from the slow cooker and place them on a large platter. Your goal here is to remove all of the bones. As you can see in my photo, there are plenty of bones to remove.
  3. Trim any excess fat, then chop the beef ribs. Once chopped, add the beef back to the kimchi mixture, and give a good stir.
  4. Heat a skillet on medium heat. To another skillet, lightly toast the flour tortillas, just until they get a bit of char, the place them on a place, and cover them to keep warm.
  5. To the skillet, add some of the beef mixture, and get a nice sear on the beef, then place the beef mixture into each tortilla and top with the shallots and jalapeno chili.
  6. Dig in. The flavors will blow you away. Not overly spicy, but you get this great, almost sweet, flavor from that kimchi. No one would know, but you, if there was even kimchi in this dish as it mellows out in the cooking process. These tacos might be one of my favorites now, and if you know me, I love tacos. So the next time you are near a Mexican supermarket, stop in, look around, and pick up some beef short ribs! Hope you enjoy!

 

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Mexican Style Layered Dip Recipe

My wife fell ill to the good ‘ol flu bug this past holiday season. It was not happy times by any means, and she was laid up in bed for days. As I had planned out a great meal, days in advance of her falling ill, I continued with my plan and had family over. The meal turned out well, and I felt bad as my wife was not able to join in on the festivities. When she began to perk up, I decided to make a few comforting appetizers for her, which I thought she would love, and boy did she (and I) ever! Once I decided to make was a spin on a Mexican style layered dip. I’ve been craving Mexican food of any kind, and Tex-Mex in particular, and so I wanted to come up with something that incorporated all of the awesomeness on a plate of standard Mexican fare. Welcome the Mexican style layered dip.

Mexican Style Layered Dip

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 14 oz can red enchilada sauce
  • 14 oz can green enchilada sauce
  • 15 oz  can of refried beans
  • 4 oz can of green chilies
  • 5 oz box of La Preferida Spanish rice, cooked by directions
  • 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
  • 3 cups of cheddar jack cheese, shredded
  • 1 tbsp canola oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • Tortilla chips

Start by heating up a couple of pots, and a skillet on medium heat. To one pot, add the green enchilada sauce, to another pot add the red enchilada sauce, and to the skillet add the canola oil.

Warm the sauces through, just until they bubble, then reduce the heat to low.

Season your cut up chicken breasts with salt and pepper, then add to the skillet. Cook until cooked through, then remove from the heat.

Heat your refried beans in the microwave, or to another pot on the stove, until fully cooked.

How to make a Mexican layered dip recipe

Now for the assembly.

To a microwave safe bowl, large enough to hold all of this, or use a baking dish and cook in the oven, your call.

Add the layer of refried beans, top with the cooked Spanish rice, layer the green enchilada sauce, the green chiles, then the a layer of cheddar jack cheese, the cooked chicken, then the red enchilada sauce, and finally another layer of cheese.

Trust me.

Heat in the microwave, or oven until the top layer of cheese is nice and bubbly, allowing the rest to cook through, again.

Get your chips ready and dive in.

TRUST ME.

This dip was a mega hit. Everything you wanted in a scoop or spoonful of Mexican food and perfectly balanced with just the right spice and textures.

If you are looking for a crowd pleaser, give this Mexican layered dip a try. I’m certain you will love it!

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