America's Test Kitchen Tostadas

adapted from: America's Test Kitchen

Shredded Pork:

2 Lbs. boneless pork butt roast (I used boneless country ribs)

2 medium onions, 1 quartered and 1 chopped fine

5 medium garlic cloves, 3 peeled and smashed and 2 minced

4 sprigs fresh thyme (I used dried)

table salt

2 Tbl. olive oil

1/2 tsp. dried oregano

1 (14.5 oz.) can tomato sauce

1 Tbl. ground chipotle chili powder

2 bay leaves


3/4 c. vegetable oil

12 (6-inch) corn tortillas 

table salt


Queso Fresco or Feta cheese

fresh cilantro leaves, chopped

sour cream

diced avocado

fresh salsa

lime wedges

1.  For the shredded pork:  Trim the excess fat from the meat and cut into 1-inch pieces.  Bring the pork, quartered onion, smashed garlic cloves, thyme, 1 tsp. salt and 6 cups of water to a simmer in a large saucepan over medium-high heat.  Reduce the heat to medium-low, partially cover and cook until the pork is tender, 1 1/4 - 1 1/2 hours.  Drain the pork, reserving 1 cup of cooking liquid.  Discard the onion, garlic and thyme.  Return the pork to the saucepan and using a potato masher, mash until shredded; set aside. 

2.  Heat the olive oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering.  Add the shredded pork, chopped onion and oregano; cook, stirring often, until the pork is well browned and crisp, 7-10 minutes.  Add the minced garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.  

3.  Stir in the tomato sauce, chipotle chili powder, reserved pork cooking liquid and bay leaves; simmer until almost all the liquid has evaporated, 5-7 minutes.  Remove and discard the bay leaves and season with salt to taste.

4.  To fry the tostadas:  Heat the vegetable oil in an 8-inch heavy-bottomed skillet over medium heat to 350 degrees.  Using a fork, poke the center of each tortilla three or four times (to help prevent puffing).  Fry, one at a time, holding a metal potato masher in the upright position on top of the tortilla to keep it submerged, until crisp and lightly browned, 45-60 seconds (no flipping necessary).  Drain on a paper towel-lined plate and season with salt to taste.  Repeat with remaining tortillas.

5.  To serve: Spoon some shredded pork onto the center of each tostada and top with desired garnishes.  Serves: 4-6 people.  

Jenn's Notes: I pretty much did exactly what the recipe says, except I only used about 1/2 of the chopped onion.  You know the pork is done, when it shreds easily with only a fork.  ATK says that if you can't find the chipotle chili powder to substitute two minced canned chipotle chiles.