A few days ago I bought a 3.75 lb. pork butt at the supermarket, and that means it’s time for carnitas tacos! Ever since we got our Instant Pot, making carnitas has become super-easy. It’s actually not difficult to make carnitas even without the pressure cooker, but with it, it’s really simple.
I’ve experimented with a few different recipes, but this time I wanted to go basic. The recipe is basically salt, pepper, cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, and half a cup of beer. Cut the pork into 2-inch cubes, more or less, put everything into the Instant Pot, and cook on high pressure for 60 minutes.
After it’s done, transfer the meat into a large bowl and use two forks to shred the pork. Give it a taste to make sure it’s salted to your liking, and the meat is ready to be eaten! But, if you like it a little crispy, you can put the meat into a hot skillet and brown it up. That’s my preferred way.
For toppings, we had onion, cilantro, avocado, lime, lettuce, jalapeño, and salsa. Add to that some rice and beans, and you have the classic taco meal. It was yummy!
Today I got an octopus taco from a new truck that stopped by the office. I was disappointed with it because it tasted quite bland. It looks like it would be bursting with flavor, but it was not so… Oh well, I had to give it a try anyways.
I had tacos today for lunch since the taco trailer was outside the office. In the photo, you can see one taco al pastor on corn tortillas, and a sirloin steak taco with flour tortilla. Both with raw onion and cilantro, plus jalapeño and habañero salsa. It was muy delicioso!
Sometimes when I make a big batch of carnitas, I’ll take a poll from the family on whether they would prefer burritos or tacos for dinner. The vote usually swings 3-1 in burrito’s favor, which makes it a tiny bit more complicated because I have to find extra-large tortillas and that can sometimes be a challenge. It’s easy to find taco-sized tortillas, and 12-inch as well, but we want the larger (at least 16″) size which the supermarket might not stock.
Speaking of burritos, we love to visit Freebirds for our quick burrito fix. I usually will get a “monster” size for $9.60 which I can share with my wife, or save half for another meal. There’s one lady who works at our local Freebirds who really makes awesome burritos. She adds plenty of meat, a good amount of any other ingredients you ask for, and has great skill at mashing it all together nicely without the tortilla tearing. She treats us well! Actually, watching them compress all the burrito fillings while wrapping it in the tortilla is fascinating and something we try to emulate at home. Fun with food!
At any rate, I prefer burritos over tacos, but that’s such a tiny difference. It’s like I give a burrito 5 stars, and tacos 4.8.
So today the taco trailer visited our office building and of course I couldn’t resist. I have a view of the parking lot from my desk so I can see which food truck is gracing us with its presence, and also see how long the line is. And one of my co-workers is my taco-buddy so I enjoy Taco Tuesday at the office. 🌮
When I was growing up, and there was the choice between corn or flour tortillas, I always chose flour. I really couldn’t understand why anyone would prefer corn tortillas. I’m pretty sure it was because I liked to eat tortillas plain, and I once chose corn tortillas which were really dry. So, I kept with flour as my choice all these years.
But now, living in the land of central Texas, we eat soft tacos a lot. And I prefer the double-corn tortilla style for these smaller tacos. I think it just tastes amazing! I could eat carnitas, onion, cilantro on corn tortillas every day.
Today, however, I decided to try flour tortillas with a pork-belly filling and it was really delicious. The pork belly is really greasy and the flour tortillas soaked up all those flavorful juices nicely. It was somewhat eye-opening! I guess I have to rethink my tortilla game, or maybe just get used to calling an audible every time I order. 😆
Today’s photo is what I call an Otaku Still-life, with Fuchico in the starring role. These little toys are nerdy things from Japan but they are really fun to take photos of. And then I had to also put some pencils and washi tape in the background to fill the frame. I admit it’s an “11:59 pm photo”, but I like it nonetheless.
I used my Ultrapod to hold the camera, then I positioned the elements while referencing the LCD screen. I then used the 2-second timer feature to reduce camera shake. In Lightroom, I added some grain to the final image, which I think adds a lot of character. I prefer a little roughness over a super clean look.
Yes, “Taco Tuesday” is really a thing… although it’s not like a holiday or super-special occasion. Here in Austin where tacos (especially breakfast tacos) are very popular, many of us “celebrate” Taco Tuesdays. I say that only semi-seriously because since we eat tacos so often, and since Tuesday comes once a week, it’s more like we’ll recognize the special day when we realize we are eating a taco and it is Tuesday. But it’s fun to say anyway… the phrase rolls off the tongue nicely, doesn’t it?
I’m lucky in that we have a taco trailer come by our office every week and the tacos are tasty and not too expensive. For non-breakfast tacos, I like to get corn tortillas, and here they serve each taco with two corn tortillas. I like it like this. And since I got two tacos, the quartet of tortillas makes it a filling and satisfying lunch. To me, the perfect taco consists of a simply seasoned protein, diced onion, cilantro, and a hot sauce or pico de gallo. Not too many flavors, but super tasty. 🌮