My experience with Machaca is the Machaca Burrito at the Burrito King in Los Angeles. It is one of the stops that I've been making out there since I was about four years old; and my family has been making for many decades. They serve it in a large flour tortilla and i believe it is half machaca and half refritos. There are two locations, but we always go to the one on Sunset at the corner of N Alvarado.
Through trial and error, and scouring the internet.... I have found a VERY good recipe. Big Daves Beef Machaca
This is a basic machaca recipe. You can add to it or take away from it. Spice it up a little by adding chili powder or chili paste. Finish with some diced potatoes for Machaca con papas. You could also make a version of this recipe with leftover roasts or fajitas. Skip the marinade step and the searing step. Simply simmer the meat with the other ingredients until it is falling apart then shred it.
- ¼ cup Worcestershire sauce
- Juice of two limes
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp chili powder
- ½ tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- ½ cup vegetable oil or olive oil
- 2-3 lb Chuck Roast or Skirt Steak, trimmed and cut into lb portions.
- 1 Large Texas Sweet Onion (yellow onion) diced
- ½ green bell pepper diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced or pressed
- 1 Fresh Jalapeno Pepper, minced
- 1 14oz can diced tomatoes or tomatoes with green chilies
- ¼ cup beef broth
- 1 Tb dried oregano
- 1 Tb ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce such as Tabasco
- salt and pepper to taste
- Vegetable oil for searing the beef
For the marinade, combine all the ingredients in a bowl then whisk them to form an emulsion. Add the beef making sure every piece is evenly coated. Cover and refrigerate. Marinate the beef overnight in a bowl in the refrigerator. Before preparing, drain thoroughly and allow meat to come up to room temperature for about 30 minutes. In a large soup pot, heat a few tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat until very hot. Sear the beef a few pieces at a time to develop a rich brown color on all sides as well as on the bottom of the pan. Do this in several batches if the pot is too crowded. When all the beef is browned nicely and removed from the pan, add the onions, peppers, and garlic to the hot pan. Saut for a few minutes then add the remaining ingredients to the pan along with the beef. Bring to a boil, scraping the browned bits off the bottom of the pan. Reduce heat to low, cover and simmer slowly for about 2 hours. The meat should be very tender and should easily fall apart when pricked with a fork. Remove from heat, remove meat to a cutting board and shred with a pair of forks. Return to the pot and bring to a simmer, uncovered. Reduce the liquid until very thick, almost dry. At this point, adjust the seasoning with salt, pepper, and whatever additional heat you want to add if any. Serve with tortillas, cheese, salsa, lettuce and guacamole for a great beef taco. Portion and freeze the remaining machaca in zip lock bags for later use.