This recipe is very much measured by handfuls and feelings. The tortillas are the Sonoran wheat tortillas made at Los Poblanos with the rendered lamb fat from the braise. The lamb itself comes from the Manzanares family’s Shepherd’s Lamb label, which raises the only certified-organic lamb in the state.
CAMPO LAMB BIRRIA RECIPE
300 g sifted Sonoran flour from Southwest Grain Collaborative
300 g AP flour
15 g baking powder
25 g salt
50 g lamb fat (We use the heavily spiced and flavorful lamb fat that comes from the lamb braise for this dish. You can use any fat you choose.)
400 g warm water
Mix the dry ingredients together, cut the fat in with fingertips, add warm water and gently combine using a spoon. The mix will be sticky so try not to get too much on your hands. Let rest for 30 minutes or so, then portion to desired weight. We use 75-gram portions at the restaurant. Let rest for anywhere from 15 minutes to overnight. They are best rolled out 12-36 hours after being portioned. We roll them out about 2 mm thick and grill them directly over the grill here at Campo.
The hominy is processed here from NM blue corn out of Tamaya and Mexican June white corn from the Schneiders in Santa Fe (Southwest Grain Collaborative). We nixtamalize the corn the night before we need it. We rinse and cook in fresh water with garlic, bay leaf, and salt until tender.
The vegetables are seasonal, but usually include turnips cooked in butter along with the hominy, and a grilled vegetable such as asparagus.
The lamb is butchered here by our team into portions that can carefully braise and stay as one chunk to be served on the final dish as opposed to shredded like most birria-style dishes are served. The lamb is marinated in chiles and spices, seared, and braised in other aromatics and stock (lamb, chicken and/or beef)
The spice mix for this is more or less, the following:
Guajillo, árbol, Pequin, NM red, and cascabel chiles
White, green, pink, and black pepper
Allspice, clove, bay leaf
Oregano, garlic, coriander
A little bit of cinnamon
All of these spices and fresh garlic are pulverized to a fine spice mix that is used to marinate the lamb before roasting, searing, and braising gently.
Try a delicious Southwest cocktail with your savory lamb dinner:
Photography by Mary West
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