Cross Shank Tacos

 

Cross shanks. What do you do with them, you ask? Never cooked them? Neither had Rebecca. But her husband, Rex, is always up to prove he's better in the kitchen, so here's a home tested original recipe from another Saddle Ridge farmer. Get your cast iron & crock pot ready!

Saddle Ridge Cross Shank Tacos provided by Rex

Shanks:
6 pounds (approx - 2 packages) of beef cross shanks
Salt
pepper
Paprika
garlic powder

Braise:
1 onion - rough cut
6 - 8 garlic cloves - rough cut
3 - 12oz dark beer (prefers Negro Modelo)
1 - 6oz Goya tomato sauce
6 - dried chilis (ancho & pablano)
6 - tablespoons cumin
6 - tablespoons paprika
3 - tablespoons chili powder
3 - tablespoons minced garlic
1 - tablespoon red chili flakes
1 - lime juiced inluding pulp
1 - handful of rough cut fresh cilantro

Beans:
1 - can black beans rinsed good
3 - 4 cloves of garlic minced
2 -3 jalepenos
1/4 cup ketchup
beer to cover
handful of cilantro
salt & pepper to taste

Start braise on low heat in your crock pot or dutch oven. Once done, prepare your shanks on a tin foiled lined cookie sheet. While you are preparing, heat your cast iron on medium heat. Once heated, drizzle olive oil and coat pan well once oil has reached same approximate temp. Sear cross shanks on each side 6 - 7 minutes.

Once seared, place cross shanks in braise and cook low for 8 - 10 hours or until meat is fork tender and you are able to shred off bones with ease.

Strain braise and shred all meat, place back in crock pot. Taste and reseason to your liking. While getting that extra yummy in, place your braise liquid in your cast iron & simmer to thicken for taco sause. (Extra can be used for another recipe to follow. Once cooled, skim off any fat and put in fridge or freeze for later. Don't forget to save extra or you will miss out!)

Prepare your beans. Have your beans rinsed & put in saucepan. Beans, ketchup and enough beer to cover, add the rest. Place on medium heat while stirring often. Once heated, place on simmer for about 10 - 15 minutes.

Prepare all your favorite taco toppings and set side. Warm your choice of tortillas.

Rex served his with homemade pico de gallo, cheese, sour cream & thickened braise liquid. Rice (whatever kind you prefer) along with beans is a staple with Mexican cuisine in this house.

Trying new things is a journey to enjoy, so have some fun & enjoy your dinner!

 

Cooking Jowl Bacon

 

Jowl bacon is known for its exceptional flavor, but it's lesser known than typical bacon and often overlooked. Here are some simple instructions for preparing your own Saddle Ridge Farm jowl. 

Begin by removing your jowl from its wrapping and place it on a cutting board.

Begin by removing your jowl from its wrapping and place it on a cutting board.

Next cut your jowl into strips, basing the thickness on your own tastes. We love it sliced thick!

Next cut your jowl into strips, basing the thickness on your own tastes. We love it sliced thick!

Arrange on a cold skillet off the heat, it's always important to start cold meat on a room-temp pan.

Arrange on a cold skillet off the heat, it's always important to start cold meat on a room-temp pan.

Cook your bacon low and slow until desired doneness is achieved. Low and slow brings out the flavor and juiciness.

Cook your bacon low and slow until desired doneness is achieved. Low and slow brings out the flavor and juiciness.

Place on a paper towel lined plate and enjoy!

Place on a paper towel lined plate and enjoy!