Mutton Barbacoa

041/18: Mutton Barbacoa with Pea Mole

041/18 – Mutton Barbacoa with Pea Mole:

Following on the Taco theme tonight was Mutton Barbacoa with Pea Mole – another recipe from the Breddos Tacos book

This recipe is from the Breddos Tacos cook book – You can buy the book by clicking the link below:


The previous taco cooks from this book were:

029/18: Red Curry Paste Braised Short-Rib Taco

The Meat:

2.5kg Mutton Shoulder from Turner and George – £25.

The Ingredients:

Mexican Oregano, Ancho Powder, Chile de Arbol and Chipotle Powder are not the easiest to find. If you want to make your own tortillas you will need Masa Harina also. I got everything from Cool Chile.

The Prep:

I made a marinade from cumin seeds, Mexican Oregano, Ancho Powder, Cayenne Pepper, Chile de Arbol, Chipotle Powder, Garlic, Maldon Sea Salt, Black Pepper and Rapeseed Oil. This was blitzed in a hand blender then rubbed all over the mutton which was placed in a tray then covered with cling film and left in the fridge for 36 hours.Mutton Barbacoa

On the day of the cook I put 2 bags of heat beads into the Weber Smokey Mountain, cleared a space in the centre and poured half a chimney of lit lumpwood in. This was left half an hour to settle then I put the smoker together and poured half a bucket of hot water into the water pan. Again, this was left for half an hour to settle around 250f. Once the temperature was steady at 250f I wrapped the mutton shoulder in banana leaves. Last time I used banana leaves it was hard to keep the folds in place, this time I used cocktail sticks to help! Mutton Barbacoa

The Cook:

The next step was to double wrap in tin foil and put it on the smoker. I did think about cooking it uncovered for a few hours before wrapping to add some smoke, to be honest I forgot as I was rushing to get ready for work! Mutton Barbacoa

After 10 hours at a steady 250f I took the tray off. It smelt incredible! Mutton Barbacoa

So much juice from the marinade and the meat, it was a deep, rich colour too. The shoulder blade bone was exposed when I took the banana leaves off, it pulled away with no effort. A quick prod of the meat showed it was really, really soft!  Mutton Barbacoa

Minimal resistance as I pulled the meat apart, it was the softest meat I have shredded so far. Everything got mixed in with the juices in the tray. Mutton Barbacoa

Glorious! I had a sneak taste and it totally blew me away. A kick from the spicy marinade but such a rich flavour from the meat. Wrapping it in the banana leaf and foil had steamed the meat to make it tender but the rich taste must have come from the fat rendering and some bone marrow melting into the juices as well. With the stronger taste of mutton the combination was immense! Loved it! Mutton Barbacoa

Towards the end of the cook we made Pea Mole (the green one), Pico de Gallo (the red one) and Habanero Salsa (in the jug). Quite a lot of prep to make all of those, fairly time consuming! Mutton Barbacoa

Pea Mole: Peas, Sesame Seeds, Skinned Almonds, Pumpkin Seeds, Lime Juice, Mint Leaves, Chilli Flakes, Salt, Pepper and Garlic.

Pico de Gallo: Tomatoes, Red Onions, Coriander, Jalapeno Chilli, Salt, Pepper, Sugar, Lime Juice and Rapeseed Oil.

Habanero Salsa: Habanero/Scotch Bonnet Chillies, Rapeseed Oil, Onion, Orange Zest, Lime Zest and Juice, Cider Vinegar, Mexican Oregano, Sugar, Water and Salt. 

I didn’t have 10x Habanero’s so played Chilli Roulette out the freezer and picked 5 different looking Chillies. After 2 minutes of dry frying them I was coughing, choking, had tears in my eyes and my nose was running! Not sure what was in the pan but there was some real fire in the air!

I also made the tortillas myself. Masa Harina, water, salt and rapeseed oil then put into the taco press. A freezer bag cut into squares top and bottom helped as did putting the dough ball towards the back of the press before squeezing as the flattening process pushes it forward.

Time to Dish Up:

Tortilla, meat, pea mole, sour cream, pico de gallo, habanero salsa and chopped coriander.Mutton Barbacoa

View from above. Definite health and safety issue when I take these photos from above standing on a wobbly stool! Mutton Barbacoa

My tortillas aren’t a perfect shape but I was happy with them!    Mutton Barbacoa

The Tacos were fully loaded 🙂 Mutton Barbacoa


Cracking recipe from Breddos Tacos again, this one was probably my favourite so far. Not only was the meat incredible from the rich, deep flavours, the spice mix from the marinade and from being so tender but the fully loaded taco with the variety of flavours from all the parts was amazing. Totally loved it!

Another good dish to cook in the smoker if you have something else cooking, good use of space and could be a nice lunch whilst dinner is cooking!

Cook Difficulty: 2/5 
Cook Duration: Quick: 2/5
Cook Equipment: Weber Smokey Mountain
Cook Method: Low and Slow
Charcoal: Heat Beads
Smoking Wood: N/A
Cook temperature: 250f
Cook time: 10 hours
Internal temperature: Unknown
Notes: 1: Smoke it uncovered to start before wrapping.

2: Wear a gas mask when dry frying unknown chillies!


This recipe is from the Breddos Tacos cook book – You can buy the book by clicking the link below:





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