Tacos with Salvadoran Pulled Pork and Grilled Mahi Mahi

Total Time:
4 hr
20 min
3 hr 40 min

10 to 12 servings

  • For the Pulled Pork:
  • 3 pounds pork butt, trimmed and cubed
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 6 cups water
  • 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 sweet onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 jalepeno pepper, diced
  • 1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • For the Mahi Mahi:
  • 2 (6-ounce) mahi mahi fillets
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Essence, recipe follows
  • Oil, for greasing
  • Lime or lemon juice
  • For the Tacos:
  • Toasted or grilled 4-inch flour tortillas
  • Pumpkin Seed Salsa, recipe follows
  • Shredded cabbage, for serving
  • Sour cream, for serving
  • Sliced or cubed avocados, for serving
  • Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons paprika
  • 2 tablespoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • Pumpkin Seed Salsa:
  • 1 1/2 cups toasted pumpkin seeds (pepitas)
  • 4 toasted tortillas, cut or ripped into large dice
  • 1/2 red onion, peeled
  • 3 tablespoons lime juice
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 ancho chile
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the Tacos:
  • For the Pulled Pork: Season the pork with the salt and pepper and place in a medium saucepan. Add enough water to cover by 2 inches, about 6 cups. Bring to a simmer and partially cover the pot; cook until the meat is very tender and almost all of the liquid has evaporated, about 3 hours. Uncover the pork and let it slightly pan-fry in its own fat, stirring, until golden brown.

  • Meanwhile, combine the tomatoes, onion, garlic, jalapeno, oregano and cinnamon in a blender. Puree until smooth. Add the tomato mixture to the pork in the saucepan and stir to loosen any browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Lower the heat and simmer for another 30 minutes, or until pork is falling apart and most of the liquid has reduced from the sauce. The pork mixture should be very thick.

  • Remove the pork from the sauce. Dice into cubes and place back into the sauce until service.

  • For the Grilled Mahi Mahi: Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Season both sides of fish with salt, pepper and Essence. Using an oil-soaked paper towel or rag, oil grill. Place the seasoned fillets on the grill and squeeze lemon or lime on the fish. Cook on both sides until opaque and cooked through.

  • Assemble tacos with either the pork or mahi mahi and garnish with the Pumpkin Seed Salsa, shredded cabbage, sour cream and avocados.

Emeril's ESSENCE Creole Seasoning (also referred to as Bayou Blast):
  • Combine all ingredients thoroughly.

  • Yield: 2/3 cup

  • Recipe from "New New Orleans Cooking", by Emeril Lagasse and Jessie Tirsch

  • Published by William Morrow, 1993.

Pumpkin Seed Salsa:
  • Add all ingredients into a food processor and process until combined. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

  • Yield: about 3 cups

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