Vegan tacos forever!
We used to travel across Stockholm town to eat tacos in my teenage years. The "Taco Bar" served nachos, tacos and enchiladas and we would snub the local burger joints because nothing tasted as good as mexican food. Pretty soon taco spice mixes and corn tortillas were sold in regular shops and we would have taco evenings with friends and family as often as we could. Since then I skipped the ready made spice mixes (they contain industrial trans fats = bad), and learned to make my own taco spice mix. I'm not baking corn tortillas yet, and not sure I will for taco nights, instead I buy whole grain tortillas at the local organic store which makes sense, since aside from the fabulous taste, the great charm about a Taco dinners is that it's fuss free, quick and easy! Basically all you have to do is chop up a lot of fresh ingredients, warm some beans, lay it all in a tortilla and top with sauces and then it's heavenly good..
Tacos is mexican and basically a tortilla with filling. It's the perfect combination of warm, earthy spices and fresh clean salad! Lots of texture an flavor, no wonder its one of the worlds most popular foods. In my easy recipe I use a harissa sauce - both with the beans and as cold condiment. You can also use a more traditional Mexican salsa or hot chili sauce of choice here. Harissa fits perfect with tacos and I love the idea of bringing Mexico and north Africa together in one dish like this! Taco really invites fooding around, you can take it for a real spin!
A NOTE ON HARRISA
Harissa is a north African spice sauce originating in Tunisia. To make Harissa you need a bit of time and love to slow fry the ingredients; chili peppers, tomatoes, garlic, coriander and mint with various additions. You can use it where you normally would use hot sauce. Harissa is a great staple ingredient to keep at home, it will perk up lots of dishes, - mix it into soups , hummus and marinate your veggies in it, it's versatile.
Do you want to make your own harissa sauce? check out my blog friend Klaras recipe here!
Back to the tacos! I don't think I need to sell tacos to anyone in today's food conscious society :) but let's take a minute to just ponder on how perfect tacos are - and why we love it so much!
Having people over but very little time? The answer is TACOs! Feeling like a festive meal on a friday night but to tired to cook? - Tacos! Encouraging fussy eaters to try new vegetables? - Tacos! Tacos is kids-friendly and perfect for a hungry crowd when there's little time or energy to cook. How can we not love this Mexican street food?
This recipe is more a direction, you can improvise freely, after all tacos can be made with virtually anything.
Makes 4 tacos
4 Tortillas (I used whole grain tortilla)
In Mexico, corn tortilla is the preference, and that's really tasty but there are many alternatives, pick what you fancy! Tip! You can also use big cabbage leaves as raw tortillas!
WARM SPICY BEANS
1 tbsp vegetable oil
400 gram cooked beans (100 gr per tortilla)
I used big white beans, but you can use any bean if choice, or cooked dark lentils, or mix the two, I usually make use of leftover beans or lentils for this.
home made taco spice mix
a drizzle shoy sauce ( a few tbsp) or tamari sauce (both are japanese soy sauces)
juice of ½ lime
1 tbsp dried oregano
1 tsp raw cacao powder
1 tsp agave syrup
1 tbsp red paprika powder
1/2 tsp black pepper
1 tsp fine salt
1-2 clove of garlic, crushed in the salt
2-3 tbsp harissa sauce, green or red, can be substituted for 2-3 tbsp finely chopped low to medium hot chili, try jalapẽnos or ancho chillies. You can also add sriracha or another chili saue to this.
Tip! Use less chili if you don't like it so hot.
2-3 tomatoes finely chopped
½ red paprika, finely chopped
1 red or yellow onion, finely chopped
2 avocados, finely sliced
2 big handful of green leaves, (I used spinach) mix and match different leaves if you like
½ cucumber, finely sliced or diced
a big handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
(You can also add):
finely sliced red cabbage
small dices of mango
roasted nuts and seeds
cold cooked beans
Vegan or dairy cheese
harissa sauce or other hot chili sauce like sriracha
vegan sour cream (or dairy creme fraiche or sour cream)
fresh lime pieces
drizzle olive oil for the warm beans
optional: hemp seeds
Other sauce suggestions:
vegan lemony cashew cream (recipe here)
1. Preheat the oven to 160℃ for the tortillas
2 Place the fresh cold ingredients and sauces in serving bowls.
3. Heat up a skillet and melt 1 tbsp vegetable oil.
4. Slowly fry the "spicy bean" ingredients, all except the beans, together for 2-3 minutes on low heat.
5. Add the beans, mix well with the fried spices and lite fry for another 2-3 minutes on medium heat while stirring.
6. Place the tortillas in the oven and let it warm up for 2 minutes.
7. Remove the warm beans from the heat, drizzle olive oil over the beans.
8. Remove the tortillas from the oven and serve with the rest of the ingredients on the table.
9. Make your own taco by adding fillings on a tortilla, wrap it up and enjoy!
Bon appetit, or "provecho" as a mexican would say!
The small family owned brand Mina is founded by New York based, highly sought after moroccan Caterer - Mina. Her recipe for Harissa has made it onto shop shelves and are available to buy easily on Mina's web site here.