Sweet Potato, Pinto Bean, Tomatillo Tacos w/ Chipotle Slaw & Cilantro Chimichurri

It’s a mouthful because they’re a mouthful. These tacos were inspired.

Inspired by Paladar Latin Kitchen. And man. Are. They. Good.

I mentioned that my Aunt Julia gave me a wonderful gift on the day of my brother’s wedding… didn’t I? A tortilla press!!! We’ve already made tortillas with them several times, as tacos are one of my all-time favorite eats. And I can say that it was definitely easier to use than trying to smush the tortillas into flat discs with a pyrex pan. Tortillas are absolutely worth making homemade. Especially if you love tacos.

Sweet Potato, Pinto Bean, Tomatillo Tacos w/ Chipotle Slaw & Cilantro Chimichurri

Makes 12 Tacos

Tortillas:

We make our own using Masa (Maseca), water, & salt. We follow the recipe on the back of the Maseca bag & always end up adding a little additional water to feel. You dry fry them in a skillet on high heat for a few seconds on each side. I personally like to add a little oil for a touched of fried flavor.

Filling:

  • 2 Cans Pinto Beans
  • 1 Clove Garlic, minced
  • 1 Tbsp Chili Powder
  • 1 1/2 Large Sweet Potatoes
  • 2 Tsp Cinnamon
  • 2 Tsp Cumin
  • Olive Oil
Cut sweet potato into small 1/2 – 1 inch squares. Toss with cinnamon, cumin & olive oil. Roast on a baking sheet at 450F for about 30 minutes, flipping once or twice.
In a medium saucepan, sautee garlic just slightly before adding the pinto beans & chili powder. Heat over medium-low. You may want to add a bit of water so they don’t dry while preparing the other ingredients.
Chunky Tomatillo Salsa:
  • 7 Medium Tomatillos, diced
  • 1/4 Red Onion, fine diced
  • 1 Clove Garlic, minced
  • 1 Jalapeño, minced
  • Juice of 1 Lime
  • Salt & Pepper
Combine the diced tomatillo, onion, garlic & jalapeño. Toss in lime juice & sprinkle with salt & pepper.
Chipotle Slaw:
  • 1 Head of Cabbage, finely shredded
  • 1/4 Cup Veganaise
  • Juice of 1 Lime
  • 2 – 3 Chipotles from canned chipotles in adobo, minced
  • 1 Tbsp Adobo Sauce, from can
Combine all ingredients in a large mixing bowl & toss to coat thoroughly. You can make the sauce separately first but it’s not a necessary step.
Cilantro Chimichurri:
  • 1 Bunch Cilantro
  • 2 Cloves of Garlic
  • 1 Jalapeños
  • Juice of 1 Lime
  • 1/4 Tsp Red Pepper Flakes
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1/2 Tsp Salt

Add all ingredients to a blender or food processor. Puree.

I like to layer them with the sweet potatoes on the bottom, then the pinto beans. Top the filling with the chipotle slaw, spoon on some chunky tomatillo salsa then bathe the top with that cilantro chimichurri. Now, DIG IN. And Enjoy : )

These tacos are NOMLICIOUS. They are definitely ingredient intense but they are SO worth it. I don’t know if I could choose a favorite food or cuisine but I know I’d find it REALLY hard to live without Mexican/Latin food (it was pretty hard going 4 months in Germany with no decent Mexican, although the awesome Italian restaurant we frequented nearly made up for it).

What is your favorite cuisine? Do you love tacos as much as I do? Haha, of course you don’t. That was a silly question.

*I actually made these tacos at the beginning of the summer. Wow, did it take me a long time to post these. I promise it won’t take as long to make them as it took for me to post them!

Enjoy the last bits of summer as we move into Fall! Personally, I can’t wait! Although, I could definitely do without the darker days.

Stuffed Peppers & Adobo Sauce

Oh. My. Lord. I just discovered that Rick Bayless has a television show. Where he cooks incredible Latin food. For 30 minute segments.

If you don’t know who Rick Bayless is, well then you’re not eating enough (or obsessed with) Mexican food.

I attribute this obscure find to the History Channel special “3 Night Event!” of the Hatfield & McCoys. And Stephen’s dad. I don’t watch a lot of TV. And by that, I mean on the actual TV. I’m a netflix junkie. I like my television shows portable (by way of laptop) & with back-to-back episodes. SO. Stephen’s father loves shows about cars.  And antiques. Thus, I was introduced to American Pickers over Memorial Day weekend. In between every 10 minutes of American Picker footage was a 3 minute homage to the Hatfield & McCoys spectaculAR. So I just HAD TO watch it when it premiered Monday night to find out whether it was gold or shit. And I was sucked in to watching episode 2. And 3. Upon searching the television guide trying to find the History channel in order to DVR the second episode… to fast forward through the HEINOUS overload of commercials, of course… I stumbled upon the mighty random Live Well Network featuring a show called “Mexico: One Plate at a Time“. My reaction went something like “Mexican Food?…. Why yes, I think I will.” Then I read the “info” and found that a man named Rick was going to prepare some common Mexican street food (or something). RICK? Could it be Rick Bayless?!?! So I tuned in. And fell in love. And set out to record every episode for the next week.

He made this kickass looking Adobo Sauce and when I decided to make stuffed peppers this morning I knew I should change it up a bit. Cumin & Chili Powder are great but I needed something different. Something special. Something RICK BAYLESS makes. I tried to replicate the recipe but I couldn’t remember the proportions so I did as best I could.

Okay, I’m obsessed. But if you love (and I mean deep in your bones – want to eat it every single meal – LOVE) Mexican food, then you should be too.

Stuffed Peppers with Adobo Sauce

Adobo Sauce:

  • 3 Ancho Chiles, dried
  • Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 Cups Water
  • 2 Cloves Garlic
  • 3 Tbsp Cider Vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp Brown Sugar
  • Dash of Cloves
  • 1/4 Tsp Cinnamon
  • Salt
Cut open the ancho chiles and remove the stem & seeds. Over medium heat, toast/fry chiles in olive oil by pressing flat on both sides. In a large bowl submerge chiles in 1 1/2 cups of water. Cover with a bowl or plate to help them stay submerged. Let soak for about 20 minutes. In blender, combine chiles and their soaking water with the remaining ingredients. Blend on high until mixture is smooth. Strain through medium strainer to remove any extra seeds or large bits of chile skin.

Stuffed Peppers:

  • 3 Bell Peppers
  • 1 Large Poblano
  • Olive Oil from heating anchos
  • 1/2 Large Spanish Onion, diced
  • 1 Medium Zucchini, diced
  • 1 Jalapeño, minced
  • 1 – 2 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 Medium Tomato, diced
  • 1 Can Black Beans, rinsed
  • 2/3 Cup Quinoa
  • 1 Chipotle, minced (from can) OR 1/2 Tsp Chipotle Powder
  • 1/4 Cup Adobo Sauce
  • Salt
  • 1 – 2 Lime
Preheat oven to 450F. Roast the poblano, rotating until skin is mostly blackened all the way around. Let cool a bit before removed seeds, ribs & stem. Dice for the mixture.
Lower oven temp to 425F. Cut bell peppers in half lengthwise & clean out stems, ribs & seeds. Bake in oven while you’re preparing the filling. This is a bit of a time-saving tip. When the peppers start to brown, remove from oven. They should just be golden on the edges.
Over medium heat in a medium-large pot, sauté onions, jalapeño & zucchini in oil leftover from light frying the chiles for the adobo. When the onions just begin to brown add the poblano, garlic & tomato. Combine & let cook for a couple of minutes.
Add black beans & quinoa and stir to combine. Add enough water to just cover. Cover pot & bring to a boil to cook quinoa. About 10 – 15 minutes.
Lower heat & add canned, minced chipotle and adobo sauce. Stir to combine. Salt to taste.
You want your mixture to be nice & moist for the oven. Add more adobo sauce to taste/moisten.
Fill peppers to the brim with prepared mixture and return to oven for about 15 minutes.
Remove  from oven & squeeze fresh lime juice over each pepper.
Serve with homemade guacamole & extra adobo sauce & Mexican hot sauce (preferably Tapatío).
And perhaps a glass of nicely chilled dry white wine ; )
Absolutely delicious ❤ And filling : )

Homemade Egg-Free Pasta

Left to his own devices, Stephen feeds himself about once a day. Okay, okay, maybe twice. And he’s taking 18 credits, won’t buy plastic, eats a vegan diet, and isn’t a microwave-meal kind of guy. I still harp on him all the time to eat more so he ends up spending extra money on delivery items like THE BEST PIZZA EVER – Corrinado’s Vegan Salad Pizza. Or falafel pita sandwiches from Pita Cabana.

So… even though we make many things from scratch, I encourage him to buy snacks like applesauce & essentials to make quick meals like Muir Glen pasta sauce. Yeah, well that worked up until the time he decided to eliminate as much single-use plastic from his life as possible. Bye-bye pre-made pasta. Curse you for either coming in a plastic bag or cardboard box with a plastic “window.” Just had to go & turn one of the easiest meals ever into one of the most difficult. Okay, it’s not that hard to make homemade noodles. Unless you’re a perfectionist who wants them to be less like dumplings or more like store-bought pasta. Me.

I know the color of the pasta sauce would have popped & looked much better in a white bowl but we’re also the kind of people who re-use the bowl in which we made the dough.

For the sauce, I used Muir Glen’s Fire Roasted Tomato Sauce, roasted some red bell peppers & added them. Then sliced up some black olives to mix in. Plus a bit of Zinfandel for that extra punch of flavor & a splash of olive oil. The noodles turned out pretty perfect. This whole meal was delicious. And I believe (after internet research) you can make the noodles ahead of time and either dry them out or freeze them. So it could, once again, be one of the easiest (and tastiest!) meals ever.

Homemade Pasta

Serves 2 to 4 depending on your apetite.

  • 2 Cups AP Flour
  • 1/2 – 1 Tsp Salt
  • 1/2 Cup + 1 to 2 Tbsp Warm Water

In a large bowl, combine flour & salt. Add warm water & begin to mix with hands. The dough will be very heavy & a bit dry. Knead the daylights out of it for about 10 to 15 minutes. Let sit for about 20 minutes covered with a wet paper towel so the dough doesn’t dry out.

Flour a flat surface for rolling out the dough. Flour the top of the dough & roll with rolling pin until very thin. Or if you’re in your boyfriends apartment & he happens to own no rolling pins, but does happen to have 20+ empty wine bottles, use one of those.

I rolled half at a time. This dough is kind of a pain in the bum. I used all my strength to roll it out as thin as I could. About 2 – 3 millimeters.

With a very sharp knife cut the dough lengthwise into long noodles. The flour should keep them from sticking.

To cook, bring salted water to a boil, add a splash of olive oil to prevent sticking, and boil for 3 to 6 minutes.

They turned out quite perfect!