How to make Birria Stew

How to make Birria Stew

Making Birria stew is easy and quick:

Soak the peppers. Bring a pot of water to a boil and then take it off the heat, soak the dried peppers while you do the next steps.
Season the meat. While you wait for the peppers to soak, cube up the roast and season the meat with salt and pepper

Make the marinade. Throw together everything left except the cloves, bay leaves, and cinnamon into a blender. Remove the peppers from the now warm water and let them get cool enough to handle. Hold them by the tip over the sink and cut the tops off with scissors. The seeds will just fall right out. Then drop them into the blender too. Blend it all up into a smooth paste.

Marinate the beef overnight. Two hours is good enough too, but longer is always better when it comes to stews.
Make the stew. Saute the onions. Onions are the base of all flavor, so make sure they are extra delicious – transparent and golden. Take your time. Then add the meats, cover with chicken stock, and add the last few spices. That’s all there is to it!

How to make Birria Tacos
Once you have the stew, making the tacos is super easy:
Shred your meats. Fry them up too, if you like. I skipped this step and it was ok, but if you like your meat extra crispy and hot, here’s where you would do that.

Warm up your tortillas. This makes them pliable and soft. We use a tortilla warmer, but you can just wrap them up in damp paper towels and microwave for 30 seconds.

Dip and fill. Dip your tortillas in the soup, the fat is near the surface so you don’t need to dip too far, but make sure they get coverage. Then top half of the tortilla with beef, onions, cilantro (optional), and cheese (optional).
Fold and fry. Fry your tacos in a non stick skillet over medium heat until they crisp up, 2-3 minutes per side. Serve with a side of the stew to use as a dip.

Instant pot birria
You can make this stew any way you like, but I prefer it in the instant pot because it’s so much faster, and keeps more of the flavor locked inside the dish. Those yummy smells that fill up your house when you slow cook for hours? Those are flavor particles, and that means that’s flavor that’s not in your soup. But, regardless of how you make this, it’ll come out absolutely delicious, so pick whatever method is best for you.

Dutch Oven
To cook this in a dutch oven, you’ll need a fairly large dutch oven. Follow the instructions all the way until you close the lid of the Instant Pot. Instead, cover the dutch oven and set it on as low heat as possible on your stove, or alternatively, pop it in a 200ºF oven for 4-6 hours.

Slow Cooker
The only hard part of making this in a slow cooker is sauteing the onions. My solution was to just skip that step entirely. It didn’t seem to make much of a difference. What I did was pop all the ingredients into the slow cooker and set it to low for 8 hours. This recipe as given didn’t fit in our smaller slow cooker, so I halved it, but I think it will fit a standard sized slow cooker just fine. Let me know in the comments if you end up trying this out.

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