Who doesn’t love a good taco? I’ve loved them since I was a kid, but I think my taste for tacos has improved exponentially since then. I grew up in the midwest, and when you made tacos, you mixed in the seasoning packet to make “taco meat.” I bet you know what I am talking about. The ground beef would turn almost a reddish color from the seasoning packet. That and Taco Bell were my early impressions of tacos.
When I moved to New Mexico, I discovered that tacos don’t need the seasoning packet. In fact, they taste so much better without! Out here, some people make their ground beef for tacos with diced potatoes and onions. It sounds weird, but it is so delicious. In fact, it’s probably my favorite kind of taco, and that’s saying a lot because I LOVE fish tacos!
I was at our local grocery store picking up some popcorn kernels (air popped on the stovetop and tossed with nutritional yeast, YUM), and I walked by their meat counter. I haven’t exactly been craving ground beef since the pink slime news, however the grocery had a sign proclaiming that they are pink slime free and that they ground their ground beef on site. I picked up a pound of ground sirloin. Nothing like supporting a locally own shop.
Last night, I decided to make some tacos. I got some purple corn tortillas (made locally!) at the store, and I wanted to use them. As I began pulling ingredients, I realized I didn’t have some staples for tacos– lettuce, cheese, and sour cream (I couldn’t eat the last 2 anyhow, since Nico doesn’t respond to dairy very well). However, I did have half a head of purple cabbage, avocado, tomatoes, and radishes. So, I am calling these a New Mexico/Food Hipster mash up of a taco.
1 lb of ground beef (I used slime free ground sirloin)
4 small red potatoes, diced
1/2 onion, diced
1 clove of garlic
1/2 small head of purple cabbage, shredded
4 radishes, sliced
1 tomato, diced
juice of 1 lime
salt and pepper, to taste
1 avocado, sliced
salsa (I just used some stuff made by my local grocery’s deli…yum!)
1. In a frying pan, heat up a couple tablespoons of olive oil. Add the onions, garlic, and potatoes and cook over medium high heat, until the onions are soft and the potatoes are beginning to brown.
2. Add the ground beef and about 1/2 cup of water. Break the ground beef up and mix with the potatoes and onion. Turn heat to medium and cover, stirring regularly. Simmer until the beef is cooked thoroughly and the potatoes are soft.
3. Mix the cabbage, radishes, and tomatoes in a bowl. Squeeze the juice of one lime over the mixture. Add salt and pepper to taste.
4. Take a corn tortilla, add the beef and potato mixture, then some cabbage salad, and top off with avocado and a salsa, if desired.
I loved these tacos. They had the homey feel of the ground beef with potatoes, but with a fresh bite of the cabbage salad. I wish I had discovered the awesomeness that is raw cabbage earlier in my life. I think I always associated cabbage with sour kraut (yuck) and assumed it sucked all around. The salad by itself was delicious, but works great as an atypical taco topper.
Does anyone know how the heck I can keep my corn tortillas from breaking in half after the first bite? That’s the only downfall with corn tortillas–you end up needing a fork.