Birria tacos have exploded in popularity over the last couple of years, and there's a reason why: It takes a lot of elbow grease. Meat is slow-cooked to tenderness in a chile-based stew, and served up in tacos with the consommé, or broth, on the side for dipping. Every region of Mexico and every family has their own version of birria. This recipe, from sisters Stephanie and Cloud Ramos of YouTube channel "Views on the Road," includes a family secret that is not often found in other birria: carrots, which add a sweet flavor, and the absence of vinegar, which is typically used in birria.
Technique tip: This recipe makes a lot of servings. You can halve it if you'd like, or put in the work now and refrigerate or freeze the leftovers so you can have birria whenever your heart desires. If you are using a frozen cut of beef, make sure to fully thaw out to achieve a tender birria.
For the Birria:1.
Bring water to a boil in a large Dutch oven and add beef bones, chuck roast, chiles, onion, garlic, bay leaves, carrots, chicken bouillon and salt. Boil for 15 minutes on medium heat. After 15 minutes, skim impurities from the broth. Continue to boil for 1 hour.2.
After 1 hour, remove chiles and 1 cup broth and blend until smooth.3.
Add blended ingredients to broth and continue to cook for about 2 hours on medium-low heat, until the meat is fork-tender and pulls apart easily.4.
Remove roast, place on a cutting board and shred.
For the Chile Oil:1.
Break up dry guajillo chiles and bay leaves and add to spice grinder or coffee grinder. Add hot chiles. Grind them into a powder.2.
Heat a pot on medium. Bring the oil to somewhere between 290 and 310 F, using a thermometer to check the temperature. If you don't have a thermometer, you'll know the oil is ready when you dip a wooden spoon in the oil and start seeing light bubbles. If the oil is smoking, it is too hot and the spices will burn.3.
Turn off the heat. Add chile blend and stir into oil. Add garlic powder, black pepper, ground cloves, bouillon, sugar and oregano, and mix. Let oil cool. Once completely cooled, transfer to a storage container. Store at room temperature.
Heat pan or griddle on medium.2.
Dip a corn tortilla in the birria broth and then the chile oil.3.
Place the corn tortilla in the heated pan. Add cheese, shredded beef, onion, cilantro and optional cabbage. Fold the tortilla over into a taco shape. Cook 2 minutes on each side, or until you achieve the desired crispness.
Ladle birria broth into a cup and serve alongside taco. Dip the taco into the birria and alternate between taking bites of the taco and sips of the birria. Enjoy!