Tacos

When I was a kid I loved it whenever we had tacos.  Mom would buy one of those kits that contained all the basics to begin making tacos.  The carefully packed shells, taco meat seasoning and taco sauce all came neatly packaged in the bright yellow box.  They were always messy to eat but they were so worth it.  

I have a vivid memory of the first time I had tacos with fresh tortillas.  It was at a birthday party for my childhood friend John Oimoen.  His parents fried fresh corn tortillas that we filled and then gobbled them up as fast as they could put them on the platter.  I can still taste them today!

Lately I have been enjoying all kinds of tacos.  As I have mentioned many times before, I love sandwiches.  When asked what my favorite food is I often answer “sandwiches.”  Well to me, tacos are a type of sandwich.  Some tacos I have made recently include:  Duck, Brie and Caramelized Onion Tacos with Homemade Taco Sauce;  Bacon Jam, Cheese and Spinach Tacos with Lemon Vinaigrette; and Grilled Vegetable and Smoked Mozzarella Tacos with Pesto.  I have included a killer Mojito Pork Taco with Lime Cream recipe below along with a Grilled Zucchini Taco recipe that we made in a Taco and Tequila class a few weeks ago.  Both are easy to make and easier to enjoy!

I have more fun taco classes coming up including several “Taco Truck” classes, featuring other great taco recipes that you’ll just have to sign up to try.  I’m teaching a Taco Truck class for Teens on Friday, March 15th  and then on Saturday the 16th I have a Parent and Child Taco Truck class in the morning and a Kids Taco Truck class in the afternoon.  We will be making all sorts of yummy tacos as well as homemade taco sauce.  This sauce tastes just like the bottled sauce you can buy—but better!  The sauce keeps for a long, long time on the refrigerator but it can also disappear quickly.  There are lots of creative ways to use this delicious, fresh taco sauce.  Share yours with me!

I especially like mine with scrambled eggs and grated Wisconsin cheddar for a delectable morning repast.  Post your ideas below.

Homemade Taco Sauce:

          2 cups tomato sauce

          ½ teaspoon chili powder

          2 teaspoons cumin

          1 teaspoon onion powder

          1 teaspoon garlic powder

          ½ teaspoon paprika

          ¼ teaspoon cayenne

          2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

          1 teaspoon brown sugar

Method:  Combine everything in a jar.  Cover and shake well.  Use as desired.

Mojito Pork Tacos

          ½ cup packed light brown sugar

          1 tablespoon minced mint leaves

          1 teaspoon salt

          ¼ cup lime juice

          ¼ cup light rum

          1 cup water

          1 pound pork tenderloin, trimmed and cut into thin slices

          1 tablespoon olive oil

          Flour or corn tortillas

          Spinach

          Lime Cream, (recipe follows)

Method:  Combine all of the ingredients except the olive oil in a bowl. Let sit for 30-60 minutes. Drain the marinade and dry off the pork a bit so that it is not dripping wet. Heat the oil in a skillet to hot and cook the pork stirring a bit until done. Place some pork and spinach in a tortilla and add a dollop of lime cream.

Lime Cream

          ½ cup heavy whipping cream

          ¼ teaspoon salt

          ½ teaspoon lime zest

          1 teaspoon lime juice

          1 teaspoon sugar

Method:  Whisk the cream to firm peaks. Fold in the remaining ingredients. Chill.

Grilled Zucchini Tacos

          1 pound zucchini, cut into long slabs

          1 tablespoon olive oil

          Salt and pepper

          2 scallions, trimmed

          ½ cup chopped tomatoes

          ¾ cup grated Swiss cheese

          Corn or flour tortillas

          Lime Cream (recipe above)

Method: Rub or brush the oil on the zucchini and scallions. Season with salt and pepper. Grill or sauté the vegetables until lightly charred and hot throughout. Dice and place in tortillas with other ingredients as desired.

 

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