When the going gets tough, the tough make tacos!
My life has been going great lately, actually, at least outside of the kitchen. In the kitchen, though, things haven’t been so smooth. Last week, for example, I tried to make marshmallows. They were a complete failure. After looking at my thrashed kitchen with nothing to show for it, all I had the heart for making for dinner was tacos.
A couple of days later, I was planning on testing a recipe from a new cookbook, and an ingredient I thought would be readily available wasn’t at any of three large supermarkets. It’s frustrating enough to go shopping twice in one week. While at the last store, I had to think of something else to have for dinner, and it needed to be something I knew I wouldn’t forget an ingredient for. I was not going to the store a fourth time, no way. This called for, you guessed it, more tacos!
Actually, this taco recipe originated with a kitchen failure. One of the first recipes I made when we quit eating meat was a buckwheat and hominy casserole. I was attracted to it because it was something that could be doubled and frozen for later. However, when we tasted it, we both thought it was bland. Since I was going to freeze some of it, there was going to be a lot of bland leftovers, and since it had a bit of cumin and chili powder in it, there wasn’t much I could do with it. So, I bought an envelope of taco seasoning, added it to the bland casserole, and turned the leftovers into tacos. They were a huge hit.
Since we had just had guacamole, I came up with something different to top them with, lime crema.
- 1 tablespoon corn meal
- 1 tablespoon chili powder
- 2 teaspoons cumin
- 2 teaspoons vegetarian chicken or beef broth powder
- 1-1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon oregano
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 2/3 cup sour cream (such as Tofutti Sour Supreme)
- juice of 1 lime
- 1 clove garlic, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup quinoa (I used red quinoa this time)
- 1/4 cup buckwheat
- 1-1/2 cups water
- 1 cup corn, canned, fresh or frozen
- taco seasoning (recipe below)
- 1/2 cup water
- 18 taco shells
- shredded lettuce
- lime crema (recipe below)
Combine all the ingredients. This substitutes for an envelope of store-bought taco seasoning. It's fairly hot - you'll end up with two-alarm tacos. Double the cayenne for four-alarm tacos (I dare ya!), or leave it out for false-alarm tacos.
Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl
In a medium saucepan with a tight-fitting lid, combine quinoa, buckwheat and 1-1/2 cups water. Bring to a low boil, reduce heat to a simmer, cover and cook 15 minutes.
When the water is absorbed, uncover and stir in corn, taco seasoning, and 1/2 cup water. Cook over medium heat, carefully stirring, until water is absorbed, 3 or 4 minutes.
Crisp taco shells according to package instructions. Serve with lettuce, lime crema and salsa. Leftover filling will freeze and makes a nice burrito filling.