When I was pregnant with my first baby I did extensive research into what and when a baby should eat. As time passes I forget what can be considered acceptable food for children. While I want to feed my kids the same thing my husband and I are eating, including leafy greens and fresh vegetables, questions linger in my mind. Is it ok for my 16 month old to eat tomatoes or will they be too acidic? How will his tummy handle mushrooms? Lime juice? Jalapenos?
Since my boy will eat just about anything I haven’t tried to shelter him from things, rather, I’ve gone by trial and error. About a month ago he got very, very sick and I was afraid it was because I had let him eat pico de gallo with avocado, jalapenos and all. He loved it at the time, but I questioned how it had settled in his tiny stomach. Luckily, it turned out to be a virus (acknowledged by the fact that I, too, became sick), so I’m back to letting him lead the adventure of eating.
Mexican food is the biggest culinary adventure in our house, and this meal was no exception. I loved watching my kids devour the little tomatoes, crunch on the fresh red cabbage, and go wide eyed when they tasted the savory pork. While I was hesitant about feeding the kids something with so much chili powder in it, this was a definite winner amongst everyone at the table.
I love the fresh flavors afforded by the vegetables chosen below, but of course feel free to make this meal your own and add any toppings you like. You could also swap out the corn tortillas for flour ones, or leave them out all together for a taco salad of sorts.
My husband didn’t eat the cabbage, but my kids did. Go figure that one out.
For the Pork:
1 15 ounce can tomato sauce
3 Tablespoons chili powder
3 Tablespoons light brown sugar
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 3 pound pork shoulder (or butt)
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
5 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 small yellow onions, diced
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
For the Tacos:
Fresh cilantro sprigs
Red cabbage, shredded
Grape tomatoes, halved
In the bowl of a slow cooker, combine the tomato sauce, chili powder, brown sugar, coriander, and cumin. Stir to combine. Add the pork and salt and pepper the meat. Use tongs to turn the pork over and salt and pepper the other side. Continue to turn until it is coated evenly in the sauce. Add the garlic and onions and stir again.
Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook until tender and beginning to fall apart, 8 to 10 hours on low or 4 to 6 hours on high.
Transfer the pork to a serving plate or bowl. Let cool slightly, then use two forks to shred the meat, removing any excess fat.
Skim any excess fat off the remaining sauce in the slow cooker. Stir in the lime juice and season with salt and pepper. Add the shredded pork back into the sauce and mix until coated.
To assemble the tacos, heat a corn tortilla according to package directions. Place a spoonful of meat down the center of the tortilla and top with desired garnishes such as cabbage, cilantro, and cojita cheese.
Adapted from Kelsey Nixon