For your next Tennessee/Vandy/Titans tailgating gig, bypass the usual burgers, dogs and dips, head to your favorite barbecue joint and load up on pulled pork. Whitt’s will do nicely, but get what you like. You need only the meat — no bbq fixings like sweet sauce, beans or potato salad. Order it by the pound and turn your pulled pork (or brisket) into a Tenn-Mex tailgate feast.
With the work of the slow-cooked meat done for you, piles of soft tacos are a cinch. Stuff the meat into warm flour tortillas and top with your own colorful slaw that includes cilantro, onion and jalapeno peppers dressed with tangy lime mayo.
Go with pinto or black beans or, the Texas favorite, canned Ranch Style Beans. If you have the grill or camp stove fired up in the stadium parking lot, heat up the meat in a foil pan or skillet until the edges are crisp. Warm the tortillas right over the fire and keep the beans hot in a pot. Or, pack everything hot in a cooler in covered foil pans and start the feast right away.
Its even easier to “homegate” these tacos. Make all of the above and enjoy the game in the comfort of your own easy chair surrounded by plenty of chips and salsa. Once you think about smoked meats outside of the confines of barbecue you’ll come up with all kinds of menus. Here’s a Tenn-Mex Slaw for Tailgate Tacos that pulls this game time meal together:
- ¼ cup fresh lime or lemon juice
- 1/3 cup mayonnaise
- 1 to 2 tablespoons sugar
- Salt, to taste
- 4 cups finely shredded green cabbage
- 4 cups finely shredded red cabbage
- Handful of fresh cilantro, chopped
- 3 or 4 fresh jalapeno peppers, seeded and diced
- 1/4 cup finely chopped red onion
Combine the lime juice, mayonnaise, sugar and a big pinch of salt in a large mixing bowl. Blend well with a fork. Add the remaining ingredients and stir to coat with the dressing. Taste and add salt, sugar or a little more tang with lime juice as needed. Cover and chill until serving time.