Thursday, September 26, 2013

Mini Redneck Tacos and Tailgating Kit Giveaway [Contest closed]

Tailgate food should only require one hand....

I mean, that's not an iron clad rule or anything but it is a great guideline....

Or maybe just words to live by.  You want to keep a hand free for drinking, playing cornhole, tossing a football, or whatever.  Plus you want to be able to eat a lot of various things.  Tailgating isn't a's grazing.  

My day job has me going to Nashville a few times a month and I often stop at Martin's BBQ for lunch.  One of their signature dishes is their famous Redneck Taco, which was featured on Diners, Drive Ins, and Dives .  It is a johnny cake (think corn bread pancake) topped with smoked pork, slaw, and a spicy BBQ sauce. 

This is my inspired version of the Redneck Taco.  It's smaller, to comply with the one hand rule guideline.

One of the things I like about using Boston roasts (fka pork butts) is their holding power.  Whether you cook it in the oven or on a smoker, once done you can wrap it in foil, stick it in an empty cooker and it will hold safely for 4 hours.  You can cook it at home and take it to your tailgate to serve.  This makes them a tailgate all-star in my book.

If you don't have a grill you can make Chili Rubbed Slow Cooker Pulled Pork instead (PorkBeInspired) and use it for this recipe. 

Mini Redneck Tacos
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 8-10 hours but worth it 
Makes 24 mini tacos, plan for 2 per person
  • 4-6 lbs Boston Roast (fka pork butt)
  • 2-3 Tbsp yellow mustard
  • 1 qt coleslaw (see prior post for a recipe or buy from Kroger)
  • 1 bottle spicy BBQ sauce
For the Chili Rub

  • 1 Tbsp smoked paprika
  • 1 Tbsp turbinado sugar
  • 1/2 Tbsp Kosher salt
  • 1/2 Tbsp garlic pepper seasoning
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp chipotle chile powder
For the Chipotle Lime Cream Sauce
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 Knorr chipotle cube, finely crumbled
  • 1 tsp lime juice
  • 1 Tbsp heavy cream (or more as desired)
For the Johnny cakes

  • 3/4 cup yellow corn meal mix
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1 cup boiling water
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 3/4 cup unbleached flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • oil for the cooking surface


  1. Make the pulled pork.  Set up a smoker or grill set up for indirect heat.  Add 3-4 chunks of hardwood and/or fruit wood.   Smear yellow mustard all over the pork roast and season with the dry rub.  Cook pork until it reaches an internal temperature of 195-197f.   This should take roughly 1.5 hours per pound but go by the internal temperature.  Remove from heat, wrap twice in aluminum foil and place in an empty cooler until ready to shred for serving, up to 4 hours.
  2. Mix the chipotle lime cream sauce.  Mix the first three ingredients.  Slowly whisk in cream until you get your desired consistency.  Refrigerate until needed.  Note:  You can find these cubes on the Latin American section of Kroger, look for a small red box. 
  3. Make the johnny cakes.  
    1. Mix together the corn meal, sugar and salt in a medium bowl.  Stir in the boiling water until well mixed and set aside for 10 minutes.  
    2. Mix together the egg and milk.  Slowly whisk in the melted butter.  Stir this mixture into the corn meal mixture until blended.
    3. Mix together the flour and baking powder.  Stir this mixture into the corn meal mixture just until it is blended.  NOTE:  Like pancakes and waffle batter, don't over mix it or you will get flat, tough johnny cakes.
    4. Lightly oil a preheated griddle.  Pour a "shy quarter cup" (3+ tablespoons...ish) of the batter onto the hot griddle to make 3" cakes.  When the bottom edge starts to brown and popped air bubbles form on the top of the cake, flip with a spatula.  Cook until the other side turns golden, just a minute or two.  
  4. Make the mini Redneck Tacos.  Top each johnny cake with some pulled pork, slaw, cream sauce, and spicy BBQ sauce.  
Left - fat cap still on   Right - fat cap trimmed off
I like to trim off the "fat cap" from my pork butts, they have plenty of intramuscular fat to keep the pork tasty and moist as it cooks. 

I used small 6" hickory splits for my smoke flavor.  You could also use wood chips or chunks.

Pitmaster Pork Tip:  Slather plain yellow mustard on your pork roasts and ribs.  The mustard acts as a binder to hold the rub to the meat.  The mustard flavor doesn't come through at the end. 

 These are two 8lb Boston roasts going on the smoker, I was cooking extra.

Shredded, chopped, and ready to go.

 You can cook these on a griddle plate over the grill like this or a hot cast iron pan on the range top.  

Fancy plating...

Real life tailgate plating!
That is the third and final recipe that we are making for our tailgate Saturday at the University of Tennessee game.  Speaking of which...

Tailgating with Pork and Kroger Giveaway
Kroger and the National Pork Board want to make sure you are equipped to head out to your tailgate or game day party with your favorite cuts of pork, so they are sponsoring this giveaway of a tailgating kit.

It includes
  • A soft cooler (left) that has a large divided cooler to keep your grub and drinks cold.  It also has storage pockets and a bottle opener attached with a retractable cord.
  • A portable grill (center).  The grill fits neatly into the bottom of the carry case (right) and the top is another soft cooler. 
  • Taylor digital thermometer 
  • $100 Kroger gift card
To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment below.  If you use the anonymous comment option, be sure to leave a way for me to reach you (email or bbq forum name).  If you tweet a link to this post with the hashtag #tailgatingwithpork, you get a second entry.  

The giveaway ends at October 5, 2013, 12:01am.   We'll draw one random winner and announce it on 10/6/13

The winner by random draw is Beth E.  Beth an email has been sent to your gmail account requesting that you provide a shipping address.  Please let me know if you do not receive the prize within 2 weeks.  Congrats!

[Standard Disclaimer]  I am being compensated by Kroger and The National Pork Board to throw a tailgate and post about it.