My friend Diana shared a video with me of an Al Pastor Taco recipe. I remembered the Al Pastor Tacos I had in Mexico City, and they were the best goddamned tacos I’ve ever had. I decided to try the recipe out (instead of using bamboo skewers, I had metal chopsticks. They worked better and fit in my oven), and it was an instant hit.
Here’s the recipe:
- 5 pounds of pork shoulder
- 3 tablespoons of Achiote paste
- 2 tablespoons of Chipotle chili powder
- 1 tablespoon of garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon of ground oregano
- 1 tablespoon of cumin
- 1 tablespoon of salt
- 1 tablespoon of ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup of white vinegar
- 1 cup of pineapple juice
- 8 large pineapple slices
- 1 onion, halved
- 2 Guajillo peppers (dried or fresh)
Cut the pork shoulder into 1/2 inch slices and set aside. Mix together the Achiote Paste, Chipotle chili powder, garlic, oregano, cumin, salt, pepper, vinegar, and pineapple juice. Combine with the cut pork shoulder and marinate for 2 hours (I marinated overnight).
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a deep baking dish (I used a cast iron dutch oven), place two large pineapple slices on top of each other, and place the skewer (again, I used metal chopsticks because they were stronger) into the center of the fruit; the skewer should be standing upright. Next, place half of the marinated meat on top of the pineapple base, skewering it and essentially creating a pork tower. Skewer two more pineapple slices, a Guajillo pepper, and half the onion on top of the meat. You should have enough to pineapple, pepper, onion, and meat to create a second tower.
Place your Al Pastor towers, vertically, into the oven and bake for two hours. Once you take it out, let it rest, and you can shave the tender meat, onions, and pineapple with a knife. Serve on corn tortillas and with lime, but feel free to add any traditional Mexican/Tex-Mex toppings you want.