If you want a hearty breakfast, this is it! No need for a “second breakfast.”
This was a morning meal we would enjoy whenever we would visit my mom’s aunts and uncles at their ranchos (farms) in Baja California, Mexico. Northern Mexicans love their beef!
Sometimes, my parents would bring back machaca, along with the produce we were allowed to take across the border. We would enjoy it for breakfast on the weekend, which meant Sunday for us since we (me and my siblings) usually had Corn Flakes before church on Saturday.
This recipe is from Marge Poore’s 1,000 Mexican Recipes cookbook. When I first read it, I thought of those trips to visit my abuelita‘s brothers and sisters. As the oldest grandchild of my grandmother, I had to “represent” the rest of the family. I remember it as a scary experience, especially for a kid from el otro lado (the other side of the border/ the US). But everything was great after breakfast and we (all the kids) were running around the farm having fun for the rest of the day!
This is a very filling breakfast, so adjust your portions to how hungry you are. My eyes are usually hungrier than my stomach, but you probably have better self-control than I do!
Huevos con Machaca (Eggs with Shredded Dried Beef)
1 cup machaca (Mexican dried beef)
2 tablespoons grape seed oil (or other neutral oil)
1/2 cup medium onion (I used white), finely chopped
2 jalapeño chiles, seeded and finely chopped
1-2 medium Roma (plum) tomatoes, cored and finely chopped
Salt and pepper to taste
6 large eggs, beaten
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, chopped
2 tablespoons queso fresco, crumbled
1 – 2 avocados, prepared into slices
Cook the onion and chile,in stirring, until softened. Stir in the shredded beef, tomato(es), salt and pepper.
Add the beaten eggs and cook, stirring to scramble until just set or however you like your scrambled eggs. Serve, topping each serving with cilantro, queso fresco and avocado. We eat it with a side of refried pinto beans and flour tortillas. But it would also make a great filling for a breakfast burrito.
If you can’t find machaca at your local Mexican mercado (market), this is the recipe I use. It is also from Marge Poore’s 1,000 Mexican Recipes cookbook, but you can find other good recipes online.
Carne de Res Deshebrada (Dried Shredded Beef)
Makes about 2 cups shredded beef.
1 1/2 pounds boneless stew beef
1/2 medium white onion, sliced
2 medium garlic cloves, peeled
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon salt
Cut the beef into 1-inch pieces and put into a large saucepan with the onion, garlic bay leaf, and salt. Cover with cold water and bring to a boil, uncovered, skimming the surface as needed. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer until the beef is very tender (about 1 hour).
Remove the beef from the heat and let it cool in the broth. When it is cool, drain the broth and shred the beef with your fingers. Remove any fat and/or gristle and the beef is ready to use.