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Roasted Pork Tacos With Mole Sauce

Roasted Pork Tacos With Mole Sauce

  • Prep Time: 35 minutes
  • Total Time: 5 hours
  • Yield: 20 tacos


  • 1 (5-pound) pork butt roast or shoulder roast
  • 6 large garlic cloves
  • 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon Emeril's Southwest Essence
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup olive oil plus 2 tablespoons
  • 1/2 cup shelled pumpkin seeds
  • 1/4 cup shelled pistachio nuts
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 2 poblano peppers
  • 1 medium onion, quartered
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon cocoa powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon tamarind paste
  • 1 tablespoon molasses
  • 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken stock
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 ounces semi-sweet chocolate
  • 8 ounces grated Monterey Jack or Mexican Queso Blanco
  • 20 medium corn tortillas, steamed and covered to keep warm
  • Cilantro sprigs, for garnish
  • Lime wedges, for serving


  • Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

  • Using a sharp knife, make 6 incisions in the pork roast. Stuff the garlic cloves in the incisions and pour the lime juice over the pork. Marinate at room temperature for 30 minutes, turning occasionally. Season pork with Southwest Essence, salt, and pepper. Rub with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and place in a roasting pan; roast (uncovered) for 1 hour.

  • Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F. Cover the roasting pan tightly with aluminum foil and continue to cook the pork, covered, for 3 1/2 to 4 hours, or until the meat is very tender. Remove from oven and cool for 30 minutes. Using 2 forks, pull the meat off the bones and shred into small pieces; set aside covered to keep warm.

  • Increase the oven temperature to 400 degrees F.

  • Place the nuts on a baking sheet and bake until toasted and brown, about 4 minutes. Place the peppers and onions on a baking sheet, drizzle with 1 tablespoon of olive oil, and bake until browned and slightly charred, about 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and peel, seed and chop the peppers. In a food processor, combine the nuts, peppers, onions, chili powder, cinnamon, cumin, cocoa, tamarind paste, salt, molasses, and the vinegar. Pulse until combined, stopping once to scrape down the sides of the bowl. With the machine running, add the remaining cup of oil in a slow steady drizzle until the mixture is smooth and creamy.

  • Pour the nut mixture into a saucepan and whisk in the chicken stock and cream. Bring the sauce up to a boil and reduce to a simmer. Cook for 20 to 25 minutes. or until the mole is a smooth, thickened sauce. Add the chocolate and stir until melted. Remove from the heat and keep warm until ready to serve. Any leftover mole sauce can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to one month.

  • To build the tacos, place some the roasted pork in each tortilla. Spoon some of the Mole Sauce over the pork. Place some of the grated cheese on top of the sauce and garnish with fresh cilantro and lime wedges.