With forethought, popular meal alternative to fast food chain
Suzanna Quiring not only prepares tacos at home but has reviewed local taco eateries. Go to the review section of The Feather and read Taco tantalize tastebuds for her top choice at best taco in Fresno.
After tasting some of the best tacos in Fresno, I decided to step out into the culinary world and make some myself. To create an authentic experience, I commissioned housekeeper Rosa Ramirez to share her taco wisdom.
She explained how she added chipotle peppers and onion to her ground beef to make it spicy, and that iceberg lettuce creates a crunchy texture. And, paramount to the all-natural experience, she entrusted to me her tricks for homemade corn tortillas.
So the adventure began. The first step was the tortillas. This was a little scary because it seemed to be an experienced cook project. However, the process was easy, even for a novice like me. I mixed the corn tortilla mix, available at any grocery store, with water until it made soft dough.
I had to add more water several times because the dough was too dry. If the dough is not moist enough, the uncooked tortillas will deteriorate. After I rolled it into small balls, I enclosed it with plastic wrap and rolled it out with a rolling pin.
The tacos are tricky to transfer to the pan because they are very fragile. The directions said to not grease the pan, but after a couple of trials, I did because the result tasted better.
In the meantime, one pound of lean ground beef was cooked with one medium red onion and three chipotle peppers from an 8 oz. can, available at most supermarkets. When the tortillas and meat finished cooking, I combined them and added the lettuce, vine ripe tomatoes, and jack cheese. The result was delicious and authentic, if a little messy.
The tacos I sampled in the restaurants were of the carne asada variety, and the homemade ones were ground beef. However, all the tacos were made with corn tortillas.
The tacos were fairly simple to make because all that was needed was to put the meat in the pan, roll and fry the tortillas and chop the lettuce and tomato. The whole process only took about 30 minutes. Although the idea of cooking was daunting at first, the result was delicious, spicy, truly Mexican tacos.
For Quiring's Nov. 22 review on three local Taco establishments, click on Tacos tantalize tastebuds or go to the Reviews section of The Feather.
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