There's a laugh-out-loud moment in Season 1 of Modern Family when Sofía Vergara's sassy character, Gloria, coerces Cameron (Eric Stonestreet) to try her favorite spicy tacos. Attempting to keep his cool, Cameron sweats through the entire meal, all the while insisting that he's doing fine. Lovers of piquant Colombian cuisine can rejoice because, thanks to The Modern Family Cookbook ($19; amazon.com), Gloria's infamous Carnitas al Diablo and more of her extended fam's recipes may now be prepped at home. Featuring 100 easy-to-make dishes and a complete episode guide, the 251-page tome is the ideal holiday gift for fans of the hit show. Test-drive Gloria's taco recipe below. If your tolerance for heat runs more toward her end of the spectrum than Cam's, feel free to increase the chili powder and adobo.
Gloria’s Carnitas al Diablo
Serves: 4 to 6
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tbsp adobo sauce from a can of chipotle chilies ($3; walmart.com)
3 tbsp chopped garlic
1 tbsp chili powder
1 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
3 lbs boneless Boston butt pork roast, cut into 2-inch pieces
1 cup beer or low-sodium chicken broth
Onion, cilantro, radishes, avocado, and lime wedges for garnish
1. Combine the tomato paste, adobo, garlic, chili powder, salt, and pepper in a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker; stir in the pork. Microwave the beer in a 2-cup glass measuring cup on high power for 2 minutes or until very hot. Pour the beer over the meat in the slow cooker; do not stir. Cover and cook on the high setting for 6 hours or until very tender.
2. Shred the meat using two forks. Serve hot, or see the note below.
3. Serve in corn tortillas with onion, cilantro, avocado, lime wedges, and radishes on the side.
Chef's Note: If you decide to make the meat ahead of time, transfer the meat and juices to a 13-by-9-inch baking dish; cover and refrigerate overnight. To reheat, crumble the meat mixture into a large skillet and cook over medium-high heat for 15 minutes or until browned and hot. If you prefer to use a microwave for reheating, microwave 6 cups of the meat mixture on high power, stirring once, for 6 minutes or until thoroughly heated through.