Mexican Shredded Pork Tostadas (Tinga)
Source of Recipe
Cook's Illustrated, March & April 2010
Basically this is just a recipe for a good pork filling for tostadas, tacos, burritos, etc. It is very easy to do and results in extremely tender and flavorful meat. The original recipe calls for chipotle powder, but Mike and Jessica don't like the smoke flavoring and I can't bear the heat, so I just used a good chili powder. You can make your own tostadas by frying corn tortillas or use a good ready-made brand (like Mission).
List of Ingredients
2 lb. boneless pork butt, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 medium onions, 1 quartered and 1 chopped fine
5 peeled garlic cloves, 3 smashed and 2 minced
4 sprigs fresh thyme
2 T. olive oil
1/2 t. dried oregano
1 (14.5 oz.) can tomato sauce
1 T. ground chipotle powder
2 bay leaves
3/4 c. vegetable oil
12 (6-inch) corn tortillas
Place pork cubes, quartered onion, smashed garlic cloves, thyme, 1 t. salt and 6 cups water into a Dutch oven over medium-high heat and bring to a simmer, skimming any foam from the top. Reduce heat to medium-low, partially cover and continue to simmer until the pork is tender, 75 to 90 minutes. Set aside one cup of the cooking liquid and drain the pork, discarding the onion and thyme (my garlic had dissolved completely). Shred the pork into fairly large pieces (they recommend using a potato masher and that worked really well - it was really fast and the pork easily broke down into the right size pieces).
Heat the olive oil over medium-high heat in a 12-inch saute pan. Add the chopped onions, pork and oregano. Cook, stirring, until the pork is crispy edged and browned - about 10 minutes. Add the minced garlic and stir and cook for another minute.
Add the tomato sauce, chipotle powder (or chili powder), the one cup of pork cooking liquid and bay leaves. Simmer for about 5 minutes, or until the liquid has been completely evaporated. Remove the bay leaves, taste and adjust seasoning.
Heat the vegetable oil in a small saute pan over medium heat to 350 degrees. With a fork, poke a few holes in the middle of each tortilla. Place a tortilla in the oil and using a metal potato masher, hold the tortilla in the oil until it is crisp and browned - about 45-60 seconds (using the potato masher, you don't have to turn the tortillas in the oil). Drain and salt. Repeat with the rest of the tortillas.
Serve family style with the garnishes.
Serves 4 - 6