Barbacoa de Borrego Tatemado (Mexican Fire-Roasted Lamb)

A featured Wine Club recipe for Adventure Package: Mexico.
Barbacoa de Borrego Tatemado (Mexican Fire-Roasted Lamb)


Barbacoa de Borrego Tatemado (Mexican Fire-Roasted Lamb Barbacoa) is juicy, tender meat that is slow cooked and falling off the bone. A bite of rustic Mexican heaven.

Yield: 8
Cook Time: 90 Minutes


• 5 lbs lamb meat (your favorite cut of lamb)
• Water
• 3 ancho chiles
• 5 guajillo chiles
• ½ onion
• 6 cloves garlic
• 4 cloves
• 8 whole peppercorns
• 1 tablespoon ground cumin
• 1 teaspoon whole oregano
• ½ cup white vinegar
• 2 tablespoons Salt
• Whole Nutmeg optional (but recommended)


1. Place the lamb and 1 tablespoon salt inside a large container.

2. Cover with water.

3. Let sit for 30 minutes. This is to completely remove the blood.

4. Meanwhile, toast the chile ancho and chile guajillo.

5. Be careful not to burn.

6. Remove the stem from all the chiles.

7. Then devein and remove as many seeds as possible.

8. Add the chiles to a pot of water.

9. Bring to a boil. Turn heat off. Let sit for 55 minutes.

10. Discard water.

11. Add all the rehydrated chiles, onion, garlic, cloves, peppercorns, cumin, oregano, 1 tablespoon salt, vinegar, and ½ cup water to a blender.

12. Blend until smooth.

13. We are making a paste. If the blender needs more water, add only the amount necessary to get it to blend.

14. Set aside until ready to use.

15. Discard water from the meat.

16. Rinse the meat well.

17. Pour the sauce from the blender onto the meat.

18. Add 1 cup of water to the blender to get any remaining sauce.

19. Gently rub the sauce all over the meat.

20. Be sure to marinate every part of the meat.

21. Cover and let sit overnight in the refrigerator.

22. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

23. To a large Dutch Oven pot, add the meat and sauce.

24. Cover with the lid and place in the oven.

25. Cook for 1 hour.

26. Remove the pot from the oven.

27. Baste the meat with liquid from the bottom of the pot.

28. Return the pot to the oven uncovered and cook for an additional 15 minutes.

29. (OR, place uncovered pot under the broiler for 7-10 minutes, until the meat is slightly charred. If you are doing this method, watch the meat carefully so it wonʼt burn).

30. Again take out the pot and baste with the juices from the bottom of the pan.

31. Grate fresh nutmeg over the top of the meat and return the uncovered pot to the oven for 5 more minutes, or 2 minutes under the broiler.

32. Serve with raw white onions, cilantro, salsa, lime, and tortillas.

33. Enjoy!