Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Cinco de Taco's

I thought I would post about Taco's since we made pupusa and we have that giant bag of corn masa sitting in the pantry.

Many of you who still push your cart down the "red" isle looking for the perfect tri-tip or chicken breast value pack may think that giving up the meat means giving up the taco...(I love the sexual undertones) Not true, we must never walk away from the taco, this is a California dietary staple.

There are many soy based protein products out there, and I personally like almost none of them. I didn't give up meat to eat something made in a factory to look and taste like meat. The exception being Morning Star "Grounds" they are in the green bag, and only the ones in the green bag. I get them at Target. I know that sounds gross but they offer a great price and some grocery stores just don't carry them. I swear I don't usually buy my food in a department store but there it is, it makes me feel like Target likes me.

I have made these taco's for all my carnivore friends and family and until this very moment they did not know they were eating a soy product.

I warned you early on that this blog is not about eating particularly healthy I like taco grease dripping down my arm as much as the next person so let's make some taco's.

Trip to the grocery store or maybe just to the frig...

Corn Tortilla's, can be found in the grocery store in yellow or white, they are cheap and store well. I prefer homemade. they don't take long but if you are not in the mood for an extra step go ahead and buy the ones in the bag. At some point you must make your own, It is fun to do with kids or friends and they taste so much better.

Olive oil, because there will some frying, yes frying, yummy.

Bag O' grounds, found where all the veggie stuff is in the frozen isle. Don't defrost them.

Onions, green, white, yellow, purple, it is up to you, buy what you like, hell by them all.

Cheese, Trader Joe's has a great Mexican blend and the price is muy bien. You can buy any kind of cheese that makes you smile. You can buy it grated and save some time or grate it yourself and risk losing the skin off of your knuckles, your choice.

Lettuce, I buy what my kids call "weed salad" they were appalled to discover dandelion leaves one day and thought calling it a "spring mix" was very misleading. The greener it is the more vitamins it has and the less you have to feel guilty about. You can do ice burg if you must or even romaine.

Tomato's, the fruit of the God's. Bless the tomato it sure makes life a whole lot nicer. You can buy any kind you like but there is nothing more heavenly than a vine ripened tomato.

Salsa, fresh is best but if all you have is a jar of the other stuff that is fine.

Cilantro, sour cream, avocado-these are all optional toppings.

I will start with the tortilla's because I am assuming you took my advice and have decided to make them from scratch. If not then tear open your bag and fry your tortilla's in a skillet with about a half inch of oil. Be careful this is hot stuff, no kids aloud, and never fry naked.

If you do not have a bag of instant masa then you need to pick one up when you are at the grocery store. Most major food chains have it in the Hispanic food isle.

There are directions on the back but it is mostly an add water thing. You squish it up and let it sit while you fire up a skillet and some olive oil.

I roll mine out between two sheets of plastic wrap but you can buy a tortilla tool anywhere that mashes them into perfect circles for you, it make it go a whole lot faster. I owned one once but it is now living where all my missing socks are.

I quick fry mine in olive oil (the tortilla not the socks) maybe a minute on each side you do not want them to get stiff-crispy, they should stay soft. I set them on paper towels or a paper bag after they are cooked. Make a pile of these they will be gobbled up fast I promise.

In another skillet heat some olive oil, chopped onions and the grounds. When they all get nice and brown add some salsa and a a couple squirts of ketchup. I am not sure why I add the ketchup I just do. I think the sugar in the ketchup helps everything brown and adds something tasty to the filling. You don't have to add this if it feels too much like adding potato chips to a casserole but I think you will like it.

You simply add the filling to the soft fried taco shell, more salsa, cheese, lettuce, tomato, maybe more onions, cilantro and sour cream. You can add what you like most.

I set everything out in little bowls and stack the tortilla's on a pretty plate and let everyone assemble as they wish, if you don't like eating with your hands or family style then this is not a dish for you.

I serve taco's alone or with rice and beans, maybe roasted corn on the cob if it is in season.

A corona or a nice big jug of lime-aid is perfect with this meal.

When you are done eating go outside and lay in the hammock for a nice siesta.

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