In college, my roommate and I would go to Sam’s Club, buy a megapack of taquitos from the freezer section, and then cook them on a foreman grill. This was particularly delicious at 3 in the morning after a long night of binge drinking. That was the inspiration for these taquitos.
Taquitos Carnitas Recipe:
1. Slow-cook pork: I took a hunk of bone-in pork shoulder and slow cooked it. Heat up oil in a dutch oven, sweat half a diced onion, and sear all the sides of the pork. Then, lower the heat, add a cup of chicken stock, and simmer. Every hour, I would flip the meat and baste with the chicken stock. This whole process takes about 4 hours.
2. Pull pork: Let the pork cool, put it in a big bowl, and start pulling. I do this by hand. It’s easier to feel for any bits that my wife wouldn’t like. We ended up with a lot more pulled pork than you need for this recipe. My wife and I have been eating leftover pulled pork with barbecue sauce and pickles on ciabatta for about a week.
3. Mix pork: chop up some peppers and some additional onions. Once they soften, add them to the pork. Then add 2 C of shredded cheese. I happened to have shredded monterrey jack cheese. My wife and I bought it on a Friday night at the grand opening of the Trader Joe’s in our neighborhood. Yes, we are that lame.
4. Roll the taquitos: Set out four corn tortillas on a board. Put some filling inside. Roll it up.
2 tips: (1) wipe some water on the corn tortillas and then microwave for half a minute or so. Do it in small batches. This will minimize the amount of tortilla ripping. (2) use a toothpick to secure the rolled tortilla. I learned this from watching a Cooking for Real episode where she made flautas. I don’t know what flautas are, but they look exactly like taquitos.
5. Deep fry: I put a big container of oil into my iron skillet and heated it to about 375. Drop in the taquitos in batches of 4. They’re only going to need to fry for about a minute. Flip them over about halfway through so you get uniform color all around. Drain them thoroughly and place them on a wire rack on top of a sheet tray.
We ate these with some salsa verde we picked up at Trader Joe’s. I usually don’t like salsa, but when I saw this at the store, I knew it would go with taquitos. And I was right. The corn tortillas were nice and crunchy and really salty, so the sweetness of the salsa was a nice counterpoint.
The filling of the taquitos had burned on the ends, but this was likely because I had a really high cheese content in these taquitos and/or because I probably reused my fry oil one too many times. But, once you got to past the first bite of the taquito, the filling was stupefyingly good. It was hot, melty, porky, and cheesy. It was like really good pot pie filling, but with pork. And deep fried.
The original plan was to eat half of these now and then freeze the other half to eat later to recreate the drunken taquitos experience from college. But these were just too good, and we ate them all before any could make it to the freezer.