Making this for Sunday - nothing like firing up the smoker in February
Smoked Al Pastor Tacos
3-4 lb Shoulder/Butt
3 tbsp Achiote Paste
2 tbsp Chili Powder
1 tbsp Garlic Powder
1 tbsp Dried Oregano
1 tbsp Cumin Powder
1 tbsp Black Pepper
1 tbsp Kosher Salt
3/4 cup Apple Cider Vinegar
1 cup Pineapple Juice
1 cup caramelized onions
1 cup Pineapple Jalepeno glaze (recipe to follow)
Cilantro for garnish
1) Combine achiote paste, chili powder, garlic, oregano, cumin, salt & pepper with apple cider vinegar and pineapple juice and marinate pork shoulder overnight.
2) Prepare the Smoker – In our case we used a wood pellet smoker set to 225. If using a charcoal / wood grill, arrange firebox or set up indirect cooking until the chamber registers at approximately the same temperature (225). Feel free to use whatever hardwood you have on hand, cherry and maple were used for this recipe, but hickory or apple would also be good choices.
3) Using the same spices as the marinade, lightly coat the pork shoulder with a even mixture. This provides the end product with a more flavorful “bark” (crispy outside layer).
4) Place the shoulder on the smoker and monitor the temperature accordingly. Starting at the 4 hour mark, spritz with pineapple juice once per hour. This is also the time where I use a meat thermometer to begin monitoring the internal temperature of the meat.
5) Take the pork off the smoker one the internal temperature reaches over 195 (I prefer 203). Wrap and foil and let it rest 30-90 minutes prior to shredding / pulling.
6) While the meat is resting, prepare your caramelized onions….for more info on how to do this —-> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-bhA0GcoLM
7) To make your jalepeno glaze, dice 2 jalapenos (seeds and all), and mix with 1 cup of pineapple juice, 1/2 cup of brown sugar. Bring this mixture to a simmer and add 1 tbsp of cornstarch that’s been combined with 1/4 cup of water. Allow the glaze to simmer (and thicken) for 15-20 minutes.
😎 Warm your tortillas according to the instructions. Build your tacos with pork, onions, glaze, and cilantro. Feel free to add your own flavors to this dish and be your own Smoker Box Hero!
9) Eat the tacos heartily while consuming copious amounts of beer or tequila.