Note: Queso fresco is a fresh Mexican cheese now available in many grocery stores. To toast tortillas, hold them with tongs and place them directly on the grates of a gas burner, about 30 seconds per side. Or warm them, one at a time, in a dry skillet over medium heat, 30 seconds.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- 2 bay leaves
- Coarse salt and ground pepper
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 (3-pound) boneless pork shoulder, cut in half lengthwise
- 1 can (28 ounces) whole tomatoes in juice
- 1 large chipotle chile in adobo sauce (from a small can), minced (about 4 teaspoons)
- 16 (6-inch) toasted corn tortillas
- 1 cup crumbled queso fresco, feta, or goat cheese
- 1 cup fresh cilantro leaves
- Crunchy Slaw with Radishes, optional
In a large (5-quart) heavy pot, heat oil over medium. Add onion, garlic, thyme, oregano, and bay leaves; season with salt and pepper. Cook until onion has softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in tomato paste. Add pork, tomatoes (breaking them up) and their juice, chipotle, and 1 cup water. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer until meat is very tender, 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Discard bay leaves.
Using tongs, transfer meat to a large bowl; shred with two forks, discarding any large pieces of fat or gristle. Return meat to pan, and simmer until sauce is thick, 30 to 45 minutes more. Season, if necessary, with salt and pepper. Proceed to next step, or cover and refrigerate, up to 1 day.
Spoon pork and sauce into toasted tortillas, using 2 tortillas for each serving; top with queso fresco and cilantro. Serve with Crunchy Slaw with Radishes , if desired.