Mexican Birria de Res

Serves 4-6

Prep time

20 minutes

Cook time

Low for 7-8 hours

For this recipe you will need a food processor or blender to prepare your sauce.


3 large tomatoes

3 tbsp olive oil

250ml hot water

7 dried ancho chillies

1.5 kg brisket, either in 1 piece or 2

1 medium onion, diced

3 garlic cloves, finely chopped

5 cloves

1 tsp cumin seeds

½ tsp whole black peppercorns

1 tsp oregano

1 tsp thyme

1 tsp ground cinnamon

½ cup white vinegar

125ml water

1 large cinnamon stick, snapped in half

2 bay leaves

Salt and pepper

To serve – chopped coriander, diced white onion and lime wedges.


Preheat your oven to 200c, 180 fan. Place the halved tomatoes into a small tray or on a piece of foil, drizzle with 1 tbsp olive oil, season with salt and pepper and roast for approx 30 minutes until softened. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Heat the removable bowl on your hob until hot, turn down the heat and begin to toast your dried chillies, add a couple at a time, turning regularly so that they don’t burn, they will take a couple of minutes each.

Place into a large bowl and add 250ml of boiling kettle water. Cover the bowl with some food wrap or a large dinner plate and set aside to soak for 20 minutes. (Make sure the chillies are immersed in the hot water, add a splash more if not)

If your brisket is rolled round and secured with string, cut away the string and unroll the meat so that you have a thick strip, cut into half, then again so you have 4 smaller thick pieces. This will easily fit into your bowl.

Season the meat both sides with salt and pepper.

Heat 1 tbsp oil in your removable bowl and sear all 4 pieces of meat 1 at a time until brown. This is a quick process and should take a couple of minutes per piece. Remove the meat as you go and place onto a dinner plate.

Wipe out the bowl with some kitchen paper, add a further splash of olive oil and sauté the onion over a low heat until softened.

Add the garlic and stir well. Add the cloves, peppercorns and cumin seeds and cook for a further 2 minutes.

Remove the soaked chillies from the water, remove the seeds and any veins/stalks. (this is where the heat lies so removing this well, reduces any fieriness)

Add the chillies, cooked onion mix, roasted tomatoes, oregano, thyme, ground cinnamon, vinegar and water to a food processor or blender.

Blend until smooth.

Place the beef into the crock-Pot bowl and cover with the sauce.

(You can refrigerate here overnight if you like, just cover the bowl with food wrap or invert the lid).

Before cooking add in the snapped cinnamon stick and bay leaves

Cook on High for 5-6 hours or Low for 7-8 hours.

Once cooked the meat should easily shred using a couple of forks.

You can serve in bowls with the sauce, topped with some white chopped onion and coriander and lime.

Alternatively serve in some corn wraps or burrito shells with some Monteray Jack or Mozzarella cheese, coriander, and a pot of the sauce for dipping.