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Tu Vez Latino Culinary Academy: Barbacoa

Welcome to the Tu Vez Latino Culinary Academy! We are determined to teach Latino men how to feed themselves without having to go to a drive-through. Will it be an old family recipe? A delicious cocktail? A trade secret? Stay tuned to find out!

Bar-B-Q is derived from a Spanish word, did you know that? That’s right, all those good ‘ole boys that hate us immigrants at the bar-b-q cook off, owe it all to us. The word comes from the Spanish word barbacoa. If you’ve never had it, you are living a sad life. It’s braised beef, goat, or pork that is so tender and flavorful it makes you want to slap your granny. Now, traditionally in Mexico they use the head meat of the animal to make barbacoa, especially the cheeks. If you want to use cow cheeks, be our guest. So, our recipe isn’t 100% “authentic”, but it’s still pretty good.


1/3 Cup of apple cider vinegar. No, other types of vinegar won’t do.

3 Tbsp lime juice

3 Tbsp chili powder

4 Garlic cloves, chopped

3 Tsp cumin

2 Tsp oregano

1 1/2 Tsp pepper

1 1/2 Tsp of sea salt. Seriously, use sea salt. Iodized table salt is for plebeians.

2 Tbsp of vegetable oil

4 Lbs of boneless chuck roast with excess fat removed, (but not all)

3/4 Cup of chicken broth

1 Bay leaf

Preheat the oven to 275. Put the vinegar, lime juice, chili powder, garlic cloves, cumin, oregano,black pepper and salt in food processor or blender and puree until it is a delicious paste. Heat the oil in a pan. Cut the roast into like 4-5 pieces and cook them in the pan until they are a nice brown. This will help seal in the juices later. Put the roast in a big pot and pour in the paste, making sure to coat all the meat. Add the chicken stock and the bay leaves and bring it to a boil on the stove top. After it boils, stick it in the oven and braise it for 5-6 hours. In this time, do something productive for God’s sake. Clean the bathroom, it’s disgusting. The last hour take off the lid so the liquid can reduce a bit. Pull the pot out and use two forks to shred the meat. Just shred and shred until it is just a mass of delicious meat strings. Eat it in some tortillas with your choice of toppings. You’re welcome.

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