I can’t believe I’m still eating vegetables from the CSA. In addition to the veggies in the fridge mentioned in the last post, I just remembered that I have a bag of potatoes in the pantry and a few winter squash in the garage. While the majority of this meal wasn’t CSA veggies, it was still tasty and I believe deserves to be included as tacos are not tacos in this nearly-vegetarian household without some sort of green leaf as part of the filling. We use lettuce most of the time, but in the winter we are more likely to use cabbage. On Sunday I made a small pot of black beans (and that night we ate simple bowls of beans), well with beans and cabbage in the fridge we just new what we were going to have for dinner. And at the utter last minute we decided we wanted Tacos with a capitol T. In my family that means freshly fried shells (well, fresh from a store bought package of tortillas). So we, um, bought an 8″ cast iron skillet and pulled out the remaining shortening (yes, bad, but we had it so we used it) and started practicing our shell frying skills.
The first two shells were sacrificed to the kitchen god, whom decided to consume them via my mouth, but after that they were useable – nice and crunchy if a little snug for filling. I just broke one in half and made two half tostadas when filling it become too difficult.
Taco instructions in pictures (because nothing is measured)
Fried Shells: small cast iron skillet, hot oil, tongs and some practice (hint fry one side at a time), we’ve always let them rest and drain on a paper bag
refried beans do not make for an appetizing picture
“Refried” beans: I actually just scoop out beans plus a bit of their juices into the pan, let it heat up, add a bit of cumin and mash with a potato masher to the consistency I prefer. If they are too juicy and you forgot to skim the juice before mashing just let it simmer off, if they seem dry stir in a spoonful of water at a time until they are the right thickness.
Toppings: grated cheese, shredded cabbage, diced onion, salsa and sour cream (tomato, cucumber, avocado, cilantro are all great toppings when you can get them)
And the tasty taco result. I actually like to layer as follows: beans, cheese, salsa, other diced stuff if available, sour cream and finally the shredded cabbage. The sour cream helps the cabbage stick in the taco and the cabbage keeps the sour cream off your hands (if you didn’t overstuff your taco).
The oop-it’s-now-a-tostada-taco, still tasty