Posts Tagged ‘mexican’

Greensboro food trucks

December 10, 2012

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Friday for lunch, I had some seriously kick ass tacos, in Greensboro no less. At the corners of High Point rd and Hilltop in a small convenience store lot lies THIS taco truck. They craft a variety of authentic Mexican items but this particular day I was jonesing for tender meats from the Motherland (well someone else’s mother). I ordered 10 tacos (co-workers were eating them too, I’m not a pig…most days) Al Pastor, Lengua and Barbacoa. Every single one of them was delicious but the Lengua was the stand-out. By the way, there were no store bought tortillas here. The order took about 15 minutes to come out…they weren’t particularly busy but they handmade all the tortillas as they prepared everything. It doesn’t get much more fresh than that. Topped with cilantro and chopped white onion, it was exactly as the doctor ordered.

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The Lengua. Easily the best of the bunch, so tender yet full of flavor. It’s what other cuts of meat dream of being. In this case it was chopped and lightly sauteed to near perfect blend of tenderness and slight “crunch” and with the fresh tortilla, it could be the best lengua I’ve ever had.

The Al Pastor was good, very good but it was a tad dry and slightly overcooked. This happens in the states because the health department mandates the meat be cooked twice when it’s carved from a spit (think of gyro meat). I didn’t see the spit but it’s highly possible they had one. The flavor was great if a little too crunchy for my liking.

The barbacoa while fantastically slow cooked and tender was bland in comparison. Many places really amp up the spices in barbacoa and this was pretty plain.

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Bottomline…if you’re in the greensboro area you’ve got to try these tacos. Next trip (likely this week) I’ll cover tortas. A few of the guys in front of me ordered them and they looked fantastic. I’ve driven by the area a few times and they are usually out there around lunch and dinner most days. They don’t take credit cards so bring cash and if you can work a little Spanish into placing your order it would be greatly appreciated. English isn’t their first language and most of their patrons seem to be Mexican workers. Which is a sure fire way to know. This place serves up some killer food.

Homemade seitan thrown into some tacos

October 5, 2012

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The directions below were lifted off the Bob’s Red Mill website being that it was the product I used to make this. It should be available at Whole Foods or online.

2 cups Water
1 tsp Garlic Powder
1 tsp Onion Powder
1 tsp Marjoram
1/2 tsp Sage
2 cups GLUTEN FLOUR

Broth
2 Tb Soy Sauce
2 Tb Molasses
6 cups Water
Directions

Bring to a boil the water for the broth, molasses and soy sauce.

Mix together the gluten flour and spices. Add water to mixture and stir into a sponge-like dough. This should not be excessively wet. Knead dough a minute to make dough tougher and more elastic. Cut into 2 x 2 inch pieces and place into boiling broth. Cook in broth for about 1 hour, lowering heat as needed. Drain and use seitan for a stir-fry, sandwiches, stews and more.

Makes 12 servings.

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Yesterday was National Taco Day (I know, horrible that I didn’t even make a post about it…and I’m the taco hunter!) so for dinner I made some tacos up with this seitan. By itself, the seitan is lacking. It’s a little rubbery and doesn’t have a ton of flavor. I think some tweaking to the recipe is definitely in order. Especially adding some authentic Mexican spices.

My tacos consisted of some chopped grilled onion, cilantro, a touch of cotija cheese and a light drizzle of Whole Foods Chipotle Ranch salad dressing to add a little fat to the otherwise extremely healthy and reasonably light meal. I tossed the corn tortillas in a skillet for about 20 seconds on each side to warm and char just a bit. For a quick vegetarian meal, it was pretty tasty. A side of my guacamole rounded the evening out.

Check it out and let me know what changes you made to the recipe…if any.

BBQ Tofu Tacos

September 12, 2012

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I made this recipe for my wife as a substitute for the Pork Belly Tacos I’ll be posting shortly. Although I was sucking down braised pork belly, these were pretty damn delicious too. It’s straight up food truck style too. I started with a BBQ sauce I adapted from my fathers recipe and added some Oskar Blues Old Chub beer. It’s a fantastic mix of sweet, spicy and savory and works well on…just about everything.

Outside of preparing the BBQ sauce this meal takes no time to prepare, if of course you dont count the 45 minutes it was in the oven. Oven you say? this means you can easily fit in a couple of drinks and have time to whip up some fresh salsa. The drinks will do double duty to make the meal taste better should you burn it.

In this version I also used an off-the-shelf coleslaw mix that’s readily available at most grocers. Mine came without any sauce to it, just cabbage and carrots so it makes a perfect base to season with a little rice wine vinegar and some spicy peppers should your taste buds be looking for a little bit more heat.

The Souse (spelled incorrectly on purpose)

Ingredients

2 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1 cup water
1 cup ketchup
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 teaspoon mustard powder
¼ cup canned chipotle peppers
1 cup Old Chub or similar beer
Directions
-In a 2-quart pot, heat butter and sauté onions until they’re soft. Add the remaining ingredients except for the beer and simmer 20 minutes. Puree with an immersion blender or transfer to a blender and return to pot. Add the beer and simmer until the sauce begins to thicken. Adjust seasoning as needed and use however you want.
Pressing tofu. This is absolutely necessary if you want the tofu to retain any seasoning. It only takes about an hour so it needs to be done ahead of time and even a day ahead should you want to marinate it. Since tofu is a block of soy soaked in water it will repel marinades and sauces. Fold a paper towel and place it in the center of a deep dish, place tofu on top of the towel and set something weighted on top of the tofu, sauce pans work great. Let it sit for about an hour and pour off the water. You will see immediately the tofu block is drier and lighter. NOW you’re ready to cook up some amazing tofu. It’ll spatter a lot less if you fry it too.
To cook the tofu (in the oven) preheat your oven to 375* and line a cookie sheet or similar in aluminum foil. Spoon out a base layer of sauce and lay the slices of tofu on top. Then spoon more bbq sauce over top of the tofu. Put it in the oven for 45 minutes to an hour depending on how much you’re doing. These times are for one standard block of tofu sliced into pieces about 1/4″ thick.
In a very lightly oiled pan, cook the tortilla’s just to brown them slightly on each side. Add tofu and some slaw. Roll up and enjoy!

INC Street Food

May 15, 2012

Last weekend we took a drive into Downtown Roswell. It was a beautiful day that was calling for food and drink outside and a stroll. We saw an open table at INC Street Food and sat down without a clue as to what was on the menu. Turns out it was inspired by Mexican street food…score!

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These were our damn fresh cocktails. The margarita was good but the Pomegranate Paloma was fantastic. I can appreciate that they used Heradura Blanco and freshly made sweet and sour but it tasted a little flat especially next to the Paloma. While not an authentic Paloma, I can appreciate the new take on it. It didn’t help that it was good. They also had a stout tequila menu with some killer prices. We didn’t try any but we’ll definitely be back. The only thing that I question about the tequila menu is the abnormally low prices. This could be a 1 oz. pour instead of a 1.5-2 oz. pour that other place would normally do. We’ll find out and update you.

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INC Street Food

948 Canton St
Roswell, Ga

770.998.3114

http://www.incstreetfood.com/

Another Mango Margarita…

March 31, 2012

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This is quickly becoming a cocktail webpage, guess I’ve been drinking lately and not eating. Don’t worry, we’re still covering foodstuffs. This is a variation of the mango margarita recipe we posted back in October. I had a nearly full bottle of Siete Leguas Blanco ( a great sipper btw!), it was a reasonably nice day spent cleaning the house and finishing a book on the porch when I decided to put that bottle to good use. Dave Yan of Casa Noble posted this recipe years ago online, he had given me the original recipe posted here so I though why not mix things up. This one uses orange liqueur and grapefruit soda but still adheres to all the freshness and natural sweetness of the original. Dig it!

1 Tablespoon of Tajin Chili powder
1 Lime wedge
3oz. of freshly pureed Mango juice
1.5oz. Agave Nectar
2oz. Orange Liqueur
3oz. Blanco Tequila, Siete Leguas
1.5oz. Freshly squeezed lime juice
3oz. Grapefruit soda, Mexican Market Fresca
Ice

Grab a small mango, peel and remove pit. Cut into cubes and puree in a blender. Yield should be about 3 oz. Blend ingredients together and shake with ice. Using the lime wedge, rim the glass and dust with the Tajin Powder. Salud!

 

Rio Grande

March 23, 2012

Today a coworker and I were digging on some Mexican, well she was at least. I dig on Mexican all the time. Its been a while since we’ve gone out to lunch and we were in the mood for something new. We’ve been to a few places neaerby but none even worth mentioning here, today that changed.

I had checked out the menu online prior and it had promise, but it was also filled with all those typical cheese covered, pre-made salsa type dishes. While eyeing the menu I saw my ticket, Tacos Jalisco Style available in asada, pastor, chicken or carnita’s…Pastor please!

 

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Well you should have known, but I ordered the Pastor AND carnita’s. They were made just how I like too, freshly chopped onion, cilantro, radish and double wrapped in corn tortilla’s. First up was the carnita’s. They were a little light on the amount of meat used but they were still great. You could make the case that they were slightly overcooked but I liked the crisp edges in contrast to the juicy meat inside that added a wonderful “homemade” feel to them. I ended up ditching  the second tortilla being that they weren’t too wet and the tortilla’s were pretty thick and soaked up all the flavors. I ended up doing this for all the tacos although the al pastor tacos were on the verge of busting for the last bite. The al pastor was phenomenal!  Wonderfully spiced with earthy dry flavors of achiote but still moist and sweet from the pineapple. These are a must get. In fact they could be the best in Greensboro…for now. Carnita’s 3.5/5, Al Pastor 5/5.

Everything was fresh, including the salsa and my coworkers veggie burrito was filled with squash and broccoli which also looked great. I didn’t try it but she enjoyed it. They had a decent tequila selection so my next visit will include beers and a shot…or two. Give this place a shot, I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

Apparently this place must be starting a trend. Soon you’ll see his face just like you see Soprano’s pics in Italian restaurants.

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Rio Grande
6909 Downwind Road, Greensboro, NC
(336) 393-0524
riograndegrillandcantina.com

Juan los Bota’s Margarita

March 10, 2012

After picking up this Oogave Ginger Ale I decided to use it as a topper in a margarita. I have to say, this could be my go to ‘grit. The spike of sweetness and bite of the ginger really works well with this puro style margarita. Check it out

1.5oz Blanco Tequila
1oz Lime juice, freshly squeezed or GTFO
0.75oz Agave Nectar
Splash of Water
Heavy splash of Oogave Ginger Ale

How to make your own tortilla chips…the easy way

February 22, 2012

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This is my standard “making fresh chips” recipe. It doesn’t take to long and the taste blows the store bought crap out of the water. Usually I buy my tortilla’s, sometimes making them from scratch is just too much work even for me. When I buy them, I usually pick up a larger bag than I need specifically to make chips later. These always get rave reviews from friends and I typically get asked who’s brand are these…WIN!!!

So I pour some vegetable or canola oil in a frying pan and bring it to temperature. The I take 10 or so tortilla’s and cut them into quarters. When the oil is ready I throw a handful into the oil making sure they aren’t touching (or mostly not touching) and not covering each other so they cook evenly. When they start to take on a light golden hue I flip them. Be careful, they go from white to brown pretty quickly. Although the darker ones taste pretty damn good too. I’ll line a large bowl with paper towels and have some kosher salt and a few slices of lime handy. When they’re done cooking I take some tongs and try to shake most of the oil off them and drop them into the bowl. I throw a liberal amount of salt on them and squeeze some lime over top then shake them into the paper towel. Wash, rinse, repeat. It’s that easy.

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Make sure you use corn and not flour tortilla’s, otherwise you’ll end up with ritz crackers and dont worry about using too much salt most of it falls off the chips. They’re usually good for a few days so make a large batch. If your preparing them for company do them the day before or earlier and bag them in a paper bag so you have more time to prepare the other goodies. It’s that easy, now you have no excuse for not making fresh chips. Your salsa isn’t store bought, neither should your chips.

Mexican Stone Ground Chocolates

November 4, 2011

A few weeks ago at the market I spotted these Dark Mexican Chocolates in 3 interesting flavors (Vanilla, Cinnamon, and Guajillo Chili) and had to pick them up. They’re stone ground, mexican-style, organic and direct trade from Taza Chocolate’s in Massachusetts. It’s not the real deal but I dare you to prove them wrong. They’re on the pricier side, about $5 per 2.7oz puck but you can eat them as is or melt them down into mexican drinking chocolate which if you haven’t had, you wont ever drink our hot-chocolate ever again. They’re all 50% dark cocoa and made with Oaxacan stone mills. Because of the style and differences in manufacturing to our run-of-the-mill chocolates it has a grainy texture that starts odd but you will quickly appreciate it. How’s it taste? the flavors are all very subtle. I expected the Guajillo chili to be hotter but at first bite you almost couldn’t taste it until this slight heat creeps up on the finish. Nicely done but it left me wanting a bit more chili flavor. Maybe those Habanero cookies ruined me. The cinnamon was great, this would be the one to melt down and drink. The flavors worked great together, like peas and carrots. The vanilla was the most enjoyable to eat as-is. It had this wonderful light sweetness combined with the dark chocolate that was really pleasing.

If you can find them, check them out.

Mango Margarita

October 26, 2011

This last weekend was fish taco weekend (look for the recipe in a few days) and I usually like to whip up some mango salsa to go with it or on it. This time I went a step further and made fresh mango margarita’s. This recipe comes way of Dave Yan, the Director of Marketing for Casa Noble Tequila. He is absolutely one of the best ambassadors of tequila regardless of Casa Noble. You may remember him helping us out for our Casa Noble Tasting night a few months back. Anyway these things are fantastic, so go make some while the weather’s still nice.

1.5oz Mango Puree
1 oz. Casa Noble Blanco
1 tsp Agave Nectar
1/2 Lime, juiced

Put ingredients in a blender, mix and pour over ice. Garnish with Lime wheel.

You can also lightly coat the rim with some agave and dust with Tajin Chili powder for a little spice.