Turkey Barbacoa Tacos with Black Beans
Turkey Barbacoa Tacos With Black Beans
Authentic barbacoa is a daylong event involving a whole animal and an underground fire pit. This take is easier and totally delicious.
2 Tbsp sesame seeds
1½ lb plum tomatoes
10 garlic cloves, unpeeled
3 medium onions, unpeeled, halved through root, divided
6 ancho chiles, seeds removed
2 Tbsp kosher salt, divided, plus more
4 turkey drumsticks
1 16 oz package banana leaves, thawed if frozen
2¼ cups dried black beans, soaked overnight
2 medium carrots, halved crosswise
2 celery stalks, halved crosswise
2 tsp ground cumin
Freshly ground black pepper
24 corn tortillas, warmed
Salsa de Chile Morita (click for recipe) and queso fresco or dry farmer cheese (for serving)
- Toast sesame seeds in a dry large skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium heat, stirring, until golden, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a blender.
- Place skillet over medium-high heat and add tomatoes, garlic, and 4 onion halves and cook, turning often, until softened and charred in spots, 5−8 minutes. Transfer tomatoes to blender; set onions and garlic aside.
- Cook chiles in same skillet, turning often, until darkened and fragrant, about 1 minute. Add to blender. Once cool enough to handle, peel garlic and onion and add to blender along with 1 Tbsp. salt. Blend until smooth.
- Divide drumsticks between 2 resealable plastic bags. Add tomato purée, dividing evenly. Seal bags, pressing out air, and toss to coat. Chill at least 12 hours.
- Preheat oven to 325°. Line a large roasting pan with banana leaves, then individually wrap drumsticks with the marinade (use all of it) in banana leaves; place in pan. Cover with any remaining leaves, then cover pan tightly with foil. Bake until meat is very tender and falling off the bone (tear into packets with a fork to check), 2−2½ hours. Let cool slightly.
- Meanwhile, drain beans and combine with carrots, celery, cumin, and remaining onion halves in a large pot. Add water to cover by 2”; season generously with pepper. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook, partially covered, seasoning with salt halfway through, until beans are tender, 80−90 minutes. Pluck out carrots, celery, and onion.
- Transfer drumsticks and any marinade to a large bowl; discard banana leaves.
- Pour turkey cooking liquid from roasting pan into a large glass measuring cup; season sauce with salt.
- Scrape off cooked marinade from turkey legs, then shred meat into bite-size pieces; discard skin, bones, and sinews. Combine shredded meat with marinade; season with salt if needed.
- Serve turkey with tortillas, salsa, queso fresco, and small cups of sauce. Serve beans with some of their liquid.