Antojitos: Mexican Pork Tarts

If you know me…I am fascinated, obsessed, in love (you can get the picture) with Mexican Cuisine. I find any excuse to try something new, and this weekend was no different.  Even though the out come was not quite how I expected, these tarts were still good when eaten fresh and warm. 

I had some friends over to shop for Thirty-one bags, and decided to make some savory Mexican snacks, antojitos.  For the tarts I combined ideas from different blogs, and Better Homes and Gardens Ultimate Mexican magazine. I made the tarts, shredded the meat, and mixed the bean mixture the night before.  I assembled the tarts about an hour before and put in the oven to keep warm (which in turn slightly dried out the tarts, so I don’t recommend it.)

On to the recipe…

 For the Tart Shells:

 2 cups masa harina
1/2 cup shredded cheese (I used Monterey jack and cheddar)
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup shortening (lard would be great)
1 egg yolk
1 cup warm water

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Combine the first 4 ingredients in a large bowl, set aside. Using a stand mixer, beat the shortening and yolk until light and fluffy. Alternately add the masa mixture and the warm water. Beat until a soft dough forms, if it seems too dry you can add more water, 1 tsp at a time.

Shape the dough into about 32 balls, using a tablespoon of dough per ball.  I pressed the dough balls in the bottom of a greased muffin tin. You could free form and bake on a greased baking sheet. Bake, uncovered for about 15 minutes until the dough it set and slightly brown.  If you make the tarts ahead of time, store in an airtight container at room temperature.

For the Filling:
1 can of refried black beans
1/4 cup of your favorite salsa
Juice of 1/2 a lime
1 small Jalapeno. diced
1 package of Trader Joe’s Traditional Carnitas (or you can make your own, this was my short cut.)
Queso Fresco

In a medium bowl, mix the beans, salsa, lime and jalapeno (you will have some extra, so you can half if you want or use for nachos!) Heat slightly until just warm, the microwave works great. Set aside. Prepare the pork as directed on the package and shred. 
Take one of the tart shells and add a spoonful of the bean mixture, top with some pork and sprinkle with the queso. 


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