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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 02-18-2020, 03:05 PM   #1
qposner
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Default al pastor on kettle - trompo or direct grill?

Afternoon all! Im thinking about making tacos al pastor on Sunday. As you all know, its traditionally prepared on a turning trompo and meat is shaved off as it cooks allowing the next layer to get the caramelized goodness. Anyhow, since I dont have a real tromp, Im thinking about making a DIY one and using it on my 18 inch kettle. However, with this method the exterior is the only portion getting that char since I wont be shaving the meat as it cooks. So my other option is to grill the layers of pork directly and then stack to slice when all done. Has anyone done both and have an opinion as to which method was best? Shoot, even if you havent done either of these methods, Id love to hear your opinions. Thanks!
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Old 02-18-2020, 04:09 PM   #2
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Non traditional method. Sear it on cast iron, then put it in a roasting pan with chicken stock.


https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/...-salsa-3541083
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Old 02-18-2020, 04:34 PM   #3
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We always cook our adobada straight on the grill over mesquite lump just like carne asada. When done cooking, remove from grill, chop it up, pile it on a toasty corn tortilla and pass it to a buddy.
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Old 02-18-2020, 04:50 PM   #4
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I have had very high quality al pastor from meat on the spit at some high profile taco spots, vs meat grilled on a flat top or even a charcoal grill. I will take the meat grilled on a flat top, followed by a charcoal grill EVERY time, as the entire surface area of the meat is coated with the marinade and cooks evenly. This is my preference, and I know not everyone will agree with me. Everyone has different tastes.


I did an Al Pastor cook using my 22inch weber rotiss. This is another option and will closely mimic a trompo, though cutting he meat off is near impossible while it's cooking without a lot of fiddling:


https://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/s...d.php?t=272211





The tacos came out good, and I'm glad I tried the rotiss experiment, but won't be repeating it again. Too much work for too little flavor payoff compared to the other two methods.
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Old 02-18-2020, 10:49 PM   #5
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^^^

I'm with Moose. Unless you have the vertical spit like the restaurants, the flat top works well.

I did some a couple times and used my turkey hanger below



Hung it my PBC or Hunsaker



But did finish it off on the griddle



While it was amazing the griddle will do just fine

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Old 02-19-2020, 02:48 AM   #6
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I've made it both ways, as well.

Completely agree with those above.

If you're messing around with a trompo and want to try that, give it a shot!

If you're going to simple/easy - go with the big griddle (or larger cast iron skillet).

I really think it's the marinade that matters with well-cooked (including a little char here and there) finishing.

Enjoy! Y'all are reminding me that I need to make more of this very soon.
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Old 02-19-2020, 10:08 AM   #7
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Thanks all! Looks like my options are the flat side of the grill grates on my gasser or direct over the coals on the kettle. I’m thinking just go direct over the coals.
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Old 02-19-2020, 10:47 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssv3 View Post



Hung it my PBC or Hunsaker


What did you think about the PBC with the turkey hanger? I have both and thought about this. Worth the time to smoke in the PBC and finish on the flat side of grill grates?
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Old 02-19-2020, 11:12 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ShadowDriver View Post
I've made it both ways, as well.

I really think it's the marinade that matters with well-cooked (including a little char here and there) finishing.

Marc, well said.



There's a taco place called El Tapatio that I frequent (Sako/ssv3 does as well, when he's in the neighborhood) that has some of the best al pastor I've ever had. The meat is marinated overnight and is cooked on the flat top. The edges of the meat have little crispy bits that along with the intense flavor of the marinade and the tender meat makes for a massive flavor and texture explosion that makes my taste buds dance.



Here's some pictures of the al pastor tacos from El Tapatio so you can see:


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Old 02-19-2020, 11:59 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by qposner View Post
What did you think about the PBC with the turkey hanger? I have both and thought about this. Worth the time to smoke in the PBC and finish on the flat side of grill grates?
I say it's worth it and here is why. I hung the Al pastor in the PBC, when it was pretty much cooked, I took it out and shaved off the "trompo" onto the griddle for a little sizzle before they went on the tortillas.

I hung it back in the PBC to cook down and give color to the exposed edges after shaving the outer layer onto the griddle. It also kept the meat warm because by this time the PBC fire had burned down and was keeping the meat warm and still lightly charring the edges. Basically replicating the traditional vertical spit they use at restaurants.

So anyone that came in for seconds and thirds, were getting hot off the trompo tacos as you would in a restaurant.
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Old 02-19-2020, 12:03 PM   #11
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I used a combination of the PBC turkey hanger handle and cheap Lowe's Bayou Classic turkey hanger.



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Old 02-19-2020, 12:08 PM   #12
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That has to be some of the best I've had Richard. And that salsa....ohhhh man! I can drink that stuff.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moose View Post
Marc, well said.



There's a taco place called El Tapatio that I frequent (Sako/ssv3 does as well, when he's in the neighborhood) that has some of the best al pastor I've ever had. The meat is marinated overnight and is cooked on the flat top. The edges of the meat have little crispy bits that along with the intense flavor of the marinade and the tender meat makes for a massive flavor and texture explosion that makes my taste buds dance.



Here's some pictures of the al pastor tacos from El Tapatio so you can see:


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Old 02-19-2020, 01:08 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ssv3 View Post
That has to be some of the best I've had Richard. And that salsa....ohhhh man! I can drink that stuff.

Agreed, though I have every confidence that if you and I put our heads together, we can come up with something even better! To be discussed next weekend.
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Old 02-19-2020, 05:14 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moose View Post
Agreed, though I have every confidence that if you and I put our heads together, we can come up with something even better! To be discussed next weekend.

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Old 02-19-2020, 06:12 PM   #15
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Quote:
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Agreed, though I have every confidence that if you and I put our heads together, we can come up with something even better! To be discussed next weekend.
Man! Wish I were down there to try that pastor and whatever you guys come up with!
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