Copita's Barbacoa de Borrego
Lamb Barbacoa de Borrego
courtesy of Chef Gonzalo Rivera of Copita in Sausalito, CA
2.5 lbs boneless lamb shoulder roast
2 ancho chiles, cleaned, seeded, deveined
2 guajillo chiles, cleaned, seeded, deveined
4 chile de arbol, cleaned, seeded, deveined
2 T apple cider vinegar or more for taste
5 garlic cloves, cleaned
1 t cumin seeds
1 t dried Mexican oregano
2 t kosher salt
1 package of banana leaves
8 dried avocado leaves* (Optional - these add another layer of flavor, but should be removed before serving as they are not edible).
Preheat oven to 350º F.
Preheat a large pan over medium-low heat. Toast the chiles, turning them over and pressing them down with tongs, until chiles are fragrant. Soak the chiles in enough cold water to cover until they’re soft, about 20 minutes. Drain and discard the water.
Blend the chiles with the vinegar, garlic, cumin, oregano, cloves, salt and ½ cup of water in a blender to form a very smooth puree, at least 3 minutes.
In a large bowl add the lamb shoulder and marinade; rub the marinade all over making sure the whole shoulder is covered. Let marinate for 24 hours.
Line a deep-sided roasting pan with banana leaves and add the lamb and (optional) dried avocado leaves and wrap the lamb. Add enough water to submerge the meat and cover tightly with foil on top. Roast for about 2.5 to 3 hours or until fork tender.
Remove from broth, discard leaves, and coarsely shred the meat. Serve with your favorite homemade tortillas, beans and salsa.