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Turkey Barbacoa Tacos with Black Beans

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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons sesame seeds
  • 1 1/2 pound plum tomatoes
  • 10 garlic cloves, unpeeled
  • 3 medium onions, unpeeled, halved through root, divided
  • 6 ancho chiles, seeds removed
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt, divided, plus more
  • 4 turkey drumsticks
  • 1 16-ounce package banana leaves, thawed if frozen
  • 2 1/4 cups dried black beans, soaked overnight
  • 2 medium carrots, halved crosswise
  • 2 celery stalks, halved crosswise
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 24 corn tortillas, warmed
  • Salsa de Chile Morita (click for recipe) and queso fresco or dry farmer cheese (for serving

Details

Adapted from bonappetit.com

Preparation

Step 1

Toast sesame seeds in a dry large skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium heat, stirring, until golden, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a blender.
Place skillet over medium-high heat and add tomatoes, garlic, and 4 onion halves and cook, turning often, until softened and charred in spots, 5−8 minutes. Transfer tomatoes to blender; set onions and garlic aside.
Cook chiles in same skillet, turning often, until darkened and fragrant, about 1 minute. Add to blender. Once cool enough to handle, peel garlic and onion and add to blender along with 1 Tbsp. salt. Blend until smooth.
Divide drumsticks between 2 resealable plastic bags. Add tomato purée, dividing evenly. Seal bags, pressing out air, and toss to coat. Chill at least 12 hours.
Preheat oven to 325°. Line a large roasting pan with banana leaves, then individually wrap drumsticks with the marinade (use all of it) in banana leaves; place in pan. Cover with any remaining leaves, then cover pan tightly with foil. Bake until meat is very tender and falling off the bone (tear into packets with a fork to check), 2−2½ hours. Let cool slightly.
Meanwhile, drain beans and combine with carrots, celery, cumin, and remaining onion halves in a large pot. Add water to cover by 2”; season generously with pepper. Bring to a gentle simmer and cook, partially covered, seasoning with salt halfway through, until beans are tender, 80−90 minutes. Pluck out carrots, celery, and onion.
Transfer drumsticks and any marinade to a large bowl; discard banana leaves.
Pour turkey cooking liquid from roasting pan into a large glass measuring cup; season sauce with salt.
Scrape off cooked marinade from turkey legs, then shred meat into bite-size pieces; discard skin, bones, and sinews. Combine shredded meat with marinade; season with salt if needed.
Serve turkey with tortillas, salsa, queso fresco, and small cups of sauce. Serve beans with some of their liquid.

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