Thursday, January 23, 2014

taco night tacos

I was recently talking to someone about taco night tacos.  These are better known as the American style taco which consist of a hard shell and ground beef cooked with taco seasoning.  I wanted to make my own version of it.  I began by making a seasoning mix.

The mix consisted of 3 tablespoons ground chile ancho, 2 tablespoons oregano, 2 tablespoons cumin, 1 tablespoon smoke paprika, 1 tablespoon salt, 1 tablespoon pepper, and 1 teaspoon of cornstarch.  I saw a couple of recipes including cornstarch so I decided to give it a shot.  I think the idea is that it thickens whatever juices come from the meat when being cooked.

For my filling, I did a half pound each of ground beef and ground pork.  I cooked this in a pan with onions and garlic before adding the spice mix.

Another one of the key components to this dish is the crispy tortillas.  I did not want to simply buy a box of shells so I went with some regular corn tortillas that I heated over an open flame then shallow fried in oil. I only did this for about 30 seconds on each side making sure they got a bit crisp but not hard.

I while they were still warm I folded the tortillas over the grills in the oven rack to set.  I placed a large dish underneath to catch any additional oil. 

Once this was done, I had taco shells!  It was time to put together the tacos.  For my filling I had the taco meat, sliced avocado, some greens tossed in lime juice, and a sauce I made by combining the fried tomatillo salsa with crema mexicana.

I finished the tacos by topping with some cotija cheese.  I very much enjoyed this version of a taco night taco.  The tortillas was crisp but still had a little give and didn't shatter and all the fillings worked well together.  The meat itself had a decent amount of seasoning and made a bit of a sauce.  The tomatillo salsa crema had a fair amount of heat and the creaminess went well from the crunch of the tortilla. 

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