Lose your load, leave your mind behind, Baby James.
Woh, Mexico, it sounds so simple, I just got to go.
The sun’s so hot I forgot to go home, guess I’ll have to go now.
Who doesn’t love a little James Taylor (the original JT, though I still love the current JT)? I grew up listening to the peaceful strumming of his guitar on every single road trip as a kid, and even now when I hear any of his songs pop up on my iPod, I’m transported back to the backseat of that ugly red Volvo station wagon, driving through the West Virginia Appalachians with the family on summer vacation.
Just like that classic tune implies, this classic Mexico dish sounds so simple…and it is. For my convenience, it’s re-purposed as a slow cooker dish, and rarely does it get any easier. BUT, have you ever used a slow cooker for breakfast?
Now you can! I bring to you machaca con huevos.
When it comes to breakfast, I’m almost always a sweets girl. Perhaps it’s because pre-blog I used to eat (let’s be honest, still eat…) eggs for dinner all the time, and they’ve lost their appeal first thing in the morning. However, lately I’ve been in a more savory state of mind and this breakfast oh so extra appealing.
Machaca con huevos is dried, shredded beef, eggs, onions, tomatoes and chili peppers. In a way, it’s Mexico’s version of steak and eggs. While I can’t seem to get behind a porterhouse at 9 AM, the flavors in this one seem to trick my mind into forgetting that I’m eating a dinner meat for breakfast. Plus, throw anything in a tortilla and no matter the time of day or night, I’ll surely be shoving it in my face.
Like I said in my intro, the prevalence of cattle ranching in the northern Mexican states lend itself lots of meat. According to the Huffington Post, this dish in particular became a staple because in the day of pre-refrigerators, meat was dried preserved into jerky. It kept, and was then subsequently served with eggs to accompany.
While I do love beef jerky (in college I ran into trouble eating only that during exams…and then my jaw was so sore I could only eat soup for a few days after…#chrissyproblems), I found a recipe on Hispanic Kitchen that I adapted for the slow cooker. This beef is also not dried…I left mine on the soft side. I think that if you wanted a crispier, more dried version, bake it in the oven at 450F (like I did with the pulled pork) for that effect. The veggies are pureed into a lovely sauce accompaniment to round out the most important meal of the day.
- 1 pound skirt steak
- 1 TB ancho chili powder
- ½ TB cumin
- ½ TB smoked paprika
- ½ TB salt
- ½ TB black pepper
- ½ medium white onion, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, smashed
- 2 Roma tomatoes, chopped
- 2 jalapenos, seeded and diced
- 1 Poblano, seeded and chopped
- 1 ancho chile
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ cup Mexican-style beer
- 2 TB wine vinegar
- 2 TB lime juice
- ½ cup chicken or beef stock
- Cinnamon, a few shakes
- 1 handful cilantro, chopped (about ½ cup), plus more to garnish
- 4 eggs, over-medium, to serve
- Tortillas, to serve
- Chihuahua cheese, to serve
- Avocado, to serve
- Mix the dry spices (chili powder through pepper) and generously rub on both sides of the beef, let sit for 20 minutes.
- Preheat a large skillet with about 3 TB olive oil to medium/high heat. Sear the beef, about 3 minutes per side and set aside.
- In the bowl of your slow cooker, add the onion, garlic, tomatoes, peppers, chile and bay leaves.
- Add the beef and cover with the liquids and sprinkle of cinnamon.
- Cook over medium/high heat for three hours.
- Once the beef is done, shred with two forks. Using a blender or an immersion blender, puree the juice until thick and smooth. Transfer to a medium saucepan and reduce to desired thickness.
- Serve the shredded beef atop a tortilla with an over-easy/medium egg. Garnish with more cilantro, cheese and avocado as you wish.
- If you don't want to use the slow cooker, cook in a Dutch oven at 300F for 3 hours.