Epic Pork Belly Tacos

Wanna take your Taco Tuesday game to a whole new level?

Try making these epic pork belly tacos that are braised, and then glazed with orange juice, chilies, and agave. The corn tortillas are freshly pressed and griddled. They are topped with grilled mango and charred spring onions. They are then finished with a roasted chili salsa and a Oaxacan cheese crema like you’ve never tasted before.

All of the accompaniments bring in a unique and delicious flavor profile that will have you wanting to crush twenty of them and wash it down with a cold cerveza.

Epic Pork Belly Tacos

Ingredients

  • 6 lbs. pork belly split
  • 8 oz. Oaxacan cheese
  • 2 cups cream
  • whole milk
  • pork fat
  • masa harina
  • 3 ea mango
  • 2 bunches spring onion
  • 6 ea habenero chili
  • 6 ea serrano chili
  • 6 ea anaheim chili
  • 2 ea yellow onion
  • orange juice
  • agave nectar
  • 3 ea dried ancho chili
  • 2 ea dried gaujillo chili
  • 8 ea campari tomatoes
  • 2 ea cara cara oranges
  • 2 ea limes
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 4 shallots
  • cilantro
  • chives
  • xanthan gum
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • diamond kosher salt

Instructions

  1. Step 1: Braise the pork belly and make the glaze
  2. Step 2: Make the corn tortillas
  3. Step 3: Make the roasted chili salsa
  4. Step 4: Make the Oaxacan cheese crema
  5. Step 5: Grill the pork belly, mango, spring onions, and plate
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Step 1: | Braise the pork belly and make the glaze

It’s best if this step is done the day before. By braising and pressing the pork belly ahead of time, it makes grill day a hell of a lot easier.

This braising liquid recipe is for 3 lbs. of pork. If you’re braising two portions of belly like we did, then make sure to double the braising liquid recipe.

To start, preheat an oven to 250°F and roughly chop the fresh chilies, garlic, and onion. Then add the them to a braising pan. Place the seasoned pork belly skin side down over the mixture and add the water, orange juice, and agave.

Next, wrap the pork tightly with two layers of aluminium foil.

Cook for 3 hours basting the meat every hour with the juices.

Next, flip the pork belly and braise for another 4 hours. Then pull from the oven and allow the pork to fully cool down in the liquid.

Once cool, move the pork to a sheet pan lined with parchment paper.

Cover with a second sheet of parchment paper and one more sheet pan.

Press with a heavy object and refrigerate until the next day.

Strain the braising liquid into a sauce pot and reduce by half until thick and syrupy.

Pork Belly Braising liquid recipe:

1 ea white onion chopped

3 ea garlic cloves

3 ea serrano chilies

3 ea anneheim chilies

3 ea habenero chilies

1 cup agave

1 cup orange juice

1 cup water

Step 2: | Make the corn tortillas

Fresh is always best. We like using Bob’s red mill Masa Harina corn flour. It’s important to use a good quality cast iron tortilla press like the one featured below.

However, if you must substitute, make sure you buy good quality corn tortillas.

Start by mixing the corn flour with salt and pieces of cold pork fat between your hands until the flour becomes moist and forms a crumble texture.

Next, pour the water into the flour while mixing with your hands until the flour is tacky but not wet. The dough should be moist but not stick to your fingers.

Next, weigh chunks of dough to 30 grams and ball them individually.

Once they are balled, place them in a tortilla press with a halved zip loc bag above and below.

Press the balls with the tortilla press and layer them individually between 2 sheets of parchment paper.

Form all of the tortillas, stack them nicely on a sheet pan, and refrigerate until ready to griddle.

Corn Tortilla Recipe:

4 cups Bob’s red mill masa harina

4 tbs. cold pork fat

2 1/4 cups mineral water

3 tsp. diamond kosher salt

Step 3: | Make the Roasted chili salsa

This salsa should be made fresh the day of.

Start by measuring out all the ingredients. Season the tomatoes, garlic, and shallots with extra virgin olive oil, salt, and pepper.

Next. lightly toast the ancho and gaujillo chilies on the grill.

Once toasted, remove the chilies and grill the rest of the ingredients.

Remove the stems and seeds from the chilies, juice the citrus, and blend the salsa.

Make sure to season with kosher salt and agave.

Roasted Chili Salsa Recipe:

3 ea ancho chilies

2 ea gaujillo chilies

8 ea campari tomatoes

3 ea garlic cloves

4 ea shallots

2 cara cara oranges

2 ea lime

1  tbs. agave

3 tsp. diamond kosher salt

Step 4: | Make the oaxacan cheese crema

Oaxacan cheese is most similar to a stringy mozzarella cheese, and adds an incredible flavor to these tacos.  Very easy to make, the xanthan gum thickens and stabilizes the cream. It reminds me of a room temperature cheese fondue.

Start by cubing the cheese and blending with the cream and milk until smooth.

Next add the xanthan gum, salt, and continue to blend until the mixture is warm but not hot. If the mixture is too thick, add a bit of milk. If it’s too thin add a pinch of xanthan gum. It should have the consistency of a fondue.

Add the minced chives and refrigerate until ready to plate.

Note: The crema will thicken slightly as it cools so be ready to loosen with whole milk.

Oaxacan Cheese Crema Recipe:

1 1/2 cups oaxacan cheese

1 cup cream

1/2 cup whole milk

1/4 tsp. xanthan gum

1/2 tsp kosher salt

3 tbs. minced chives

Step 5: | Grill the pork belly, mango, spring onions, and plate

Start by seasoning the spring onions with extra vigin olive oil, salt, and pepper and peeling and slicing the mango.

Grill the spring onions and mango.

Next, grill the pork belly and brush on the agave glaze.

Once grilled and ready to plate, cook the tortillas in a hot cast iron pan for 30 seconds on each side. Slice the pork belly and charred spring onions.

To plate, lay a piece of the glazed pork belly over a warm tortilla. Add the mango, spring onion, and a spoonful of the roasted chili salsa. Finish with the crema and cilantro.

Also try serving these family style on a wood slice serving board like the one featured below from Sur La Table.

Conclusion:

We are happy to announce that we have teamed up with Sur La Table and will be featuring their amazing products as we continue to evolve here at EFB. Make sure not to miss out on their spring sale happening now!

These tacos should be enjoyed family style with some good beer. Making fresh tortillas is always better than buying packaged ones and is something that the kids will love to do.

Remember, if you braise and press the pork belly the day before, this project will become very easy.

Don’t forget to share these epic tacos with your friends using our social media bar.

Thanks for stopping by epic food blog!