Wednesday, October 7, 2009

the best taco-sense is a good b-fense...Mexican style tacos in the house

During my 2 month hiatus of not blogging -- I was still busy in the kitchen with the thoughts of Mexican style tacos on my mind. My trip to Los Potosinos definitely impacted my taste palette and since then I can't get enough of corn tortillas, onions, cilantro and limes with any assortment of meats or legumes. The bear-fense aka b-fense wishes to present the following evidence of such obsession with all things Mexican style.

Exhibit 1: Mexican style tacos with ground turkey & homemade black bean salsa with the El Yucataco pasa doble bringing up the rear

This meal was delicious though unfortunately we were short of limes -- so I soaked the onions in vinegar to emulate the acidic clean taste of missing limes. Despite it's deliciousness I think I prefer non-ground meats in my tacos. There's more substance and diversity of texture. See Exhibit 2:

Exhibit 2: Mexican style tacos with grilled chicken with guacamole salad and Traders Joes Chimichurri rice with the El Yucataco pasa doble bringing up the rear again...

Holy bear-ito. These tacos were on-point. I grilled the chicken on the stove with this Buckeye Rub that I got from Hill's market -- and it gave the chicken a fantastical smokey sweet flavor that really enhanced the taco. Though not pictured we had fresh squeezed lime juice. This meal was replete -- the true gem was the improvisational guacamole salad that I free styled after noticing how Los Potosinos and most other taco reviews revealed that radishes were common with your taco truck experience. This was also my first time making guacamole since Betty makes one that will blow your paws off. The guacamole salad consisted of:
  • 3 avocados
  • juice from 1.5 limes
  • salt & pepper to taste
  • 2 jalapenos diced with membrane removed
  • defrosted frozen organic corn from WholeFoods
  • a bunch of radishes sliced chunky
  • some diced tomatoes
  • diced onions
  • splash of El Yucateco green sauce
For the guac -- I placed everything in a covered bowl and shaked it up like a polaroid picture to let the ingredients combine naturally at first -- then went through with a fork and did some slight smashing. The guac has become a mainstay at our cave these days and Betty finally realized the true unleashed flavor of Mexican style tacos.

Exhibit 3: Mexican style tacos with grilled mahi mahi + radishes and said Trader Joes Chimichurri sauce

You thought I was kiddin'...nope. I kept remixing these tacos I tell you. Exhibit 3 brought out the fish in all of us. I know humans stereotype bears to eat only salmon -- but this bear likes to get his fish on with mahi mahi. I grilled up some mahi mahi -- frozen from WholeFoods -- with seasoned salt, lemon and then splashed it with some vinegar. Then topped it with all the usual fixins but also added diced radishes. This was my first time EVER cooking with fish and it seemed too easy. Ultimately this meal was simply outstanding.

For our final exhibit -- Betty and I decided to hit up La Casita for only our second time as I was craving some authentic Mexican food. After having success at Cazuelas and Don Patron 3 I was amped to see how La Casita fared with their taco offerings. I ordered their taco platter that came with beans and rice.

Exhibit 4A: from La Casita: Mexican style taco trifecta featuring: carnitas, pastor and chorizo

Exibit 4B: refried beans and Mexican rice from La Casita

Well...go figure my taco bear-ble was busted at La Casita. I had a bite of the first taco which was a carnitas taco and it was very tasty though a bit fatty for my tastes. I then had the pastor taco which was greasy and showed no semblance of the sweet tasting pork I had learned to savor. The same greasiness also showed up again when I ate the chorizo sausage. No real smoky kick -just salty greasy strangeness. The highlight of this meal was the beans and rice and I suppose the first taco. This is the first time that I would say I did not like the food at a Mexican restaurant. I felt a little queazy in the post-meal discussion with Betty thinking about the fattiness and greasiness of the meats. Her meal was so so as well. She had a chicken dish with a tangy sour cream sauce. Perhaps this meal was a sign telling us that we are long overdue to hit up El Vaquero? Who knows.

What the b-fense has hoped to show and offer up today is that
  1. I love Mexican style tacos which generally utilize corn tortillas sometimes 2 for the base then topped with some form of protein, diced onions, cilantro and a lime wedge.
  2. They are pretty easy to make at home using a variety of different proteins.
  3. Don't be afraid of radishes. They taste very good in guacamole and on top of fish tacos.
  4. Similar to the Dew's Pizza post -- while restaurants & taco trucks can serve up tasty authentic tacos -- sometimes there's no taco like home-made...which is why I say the best taco-sense is a good b-fense...
  5. Word is bear-log.

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