I decided I wanted tacos, actually, I wanted cheap crunchy tacos, like from Taco Bell. But, I really cannot eat those anymore, so I cooked. I had purchased a nice Harris Ranch tri-tip, again, seasoned it with this rub at my other blog and let it sit wrapped in paper for around 2 hours. Then it sat for 30 minutes exposed to air to form a pellicle. Just a different process for giggles.
The subject in repose
Rubbed with the Mother Rub
I then cooked the tri-tip, smoked it at 250F for around an hour, or so, until it felt like it was around 125F internal temperature. The kettle was setup with Cowboy Brand lump (not my favorite) and some chunks of apple.
This is essentially, like checking for steak by touch. You poke the meat with your index finger, if it goes in easily, too rare, if it pushes back, too done. I look for a texture that is similar to if you poke the pad of flesh between your thumb and finger if they are held together. Yes, I could have used my wireless remote thermometer with thermocouple. Didn't. The meat was removed and wrapped in baking parchment to rest.
And sliced for the win!
Meanwhile I had baked some corn tortillas, to get them sort of crispy, crispy enough to satisfy my need for a crunchy taco shell. I also made a nice cucumber and tomato salsa and a chile sauce. The chile sauce consisted of sauteing onion and garlic in some olive oil, the tossing in some home made chile powder, a pinch of turbinado sugar and some hickory-smoked salt. The chile powder is basically dried chile de arbol, cascabel, jalapeno (not chipotle) and serrano, minus the seeds and ground to a grainy powder. The chile powder is sauteed into the onions, then water is added to reach the desired thickness, a little palm sugar for texture and the whole thing is blended.
Not pretty, blender fixes that
The whole mess was assembled into the tacos and accompanied by a salad of pickled carrots and cucumbers and fresh lettuce. Yes, Iceberg, it had to be. Oh, a fire roasted jalapeno of extra large variety was tossed half into the salsa and half into the chile sauce along with the onions.
Always a good addition
The Final dish, sort of...
After I ate the tacos, I found I wanted more, so I threw together a tostada as well. Same ingredients, different form factor. Still, all good stuff.
Love that last shot, it really shows the colors and elements quite nicely. Tri-tip is such a versatile meat and really quite quick to throw together.