V. Tacos and the Special sauce

November 15th 2016

Let's just skip over the election shall we? Yeah had enough of that on Ye olde' Facebook feed. But just to not be without a bit of snark....today I made tacos! VEGAN TACOS! I gotta try and preach some plant based love, I feel like anyway I can take the edge off the heat of the world I should. I'm an omnivore, I am not trying to say different, but there is really no reason I shouldn't be focusing on plant based recipes....really good ones, I think that its the way the world has to go to sustain life. I have kids, and "footprint" guilt, I want them to be better than me...so I need to do what I can by making plant based eating a normal option for dinner at least 50% of the time.
This recipe may be the best vegan recipe I have ever made. I had several inspirations for this recipe, one of them being an arbol salsa I had at a local burrito hut on Division st. The burrito sucked to be honest....but one of the salsas was incredible. I googled my heart out trying to find "Taqueria orange colored salsa" so I read about 20 versions then I decided to mix and match a few and came up with this "Special sauce", its sexy....and it tops these vegan tacos to perfection. You won't miss the animal....I promise you.
Sexy salsa:
3 roma tomatoes
4 tomatillos
3 shallots
1/2 lime juiced
1/2 cup raw cashews, soaked for at least two hours to overnight
two cloves garlic
1/2 tsp salt, maybe a bit extra
20 dried chile de arbol, stemmed seeded and place in bowl with hot water poured over.
2 T. Tahini
2 T. nutritional yeast flakes
Broil the tomatoes, tomatillos, and peeled shallots, I cut them all in half and sprayed them with coconut oil spray, broil for 5 minutes check on them, if the outer skin of the tomatoes are blackened they are good, if they aren't broil for 2-5 more minutes. When they are out of the broiler and cool enough to handle remove skins and puree with other ingredients, using only a few Tbsp. of the water from the chilies. Add a bit of water if the mixture is too thick, it should be creamy and pour-able.
I made a black bean and corn relish:
1 can drained and rinsed black beans
1 cup corn kernels
4 radishes sliced thin
other half of lime, juiced.
1 shallot, sliced thin
1 red pepper
a handful chopped cilantro
salt and pepper to taste
4 russet potatoes boiled skin on for 12 minutes, drained and peeled and broken apart with hands (it makes them crispier then slicing)
1/2 cup cooking oil, I did a mix of canola and olive
Salt and pepper
Place oil in a small sauce pan, heat over high until shimmering, cook potatoes in small batches until golden and crispy, place on a plate with a paper towel, sprinkle with salt and pepper.
Warm tortillas of choice, and top with potatoes, relish, and special sauce. The nutritional yeast adds a bit of "cheese" taste to the sauce. My kids didn't even realize these were vegan till I told them. A great way to serve vegan dishes is to make them approachable with foods kids are already fans of, this one was a winner for family meals. A good salsa can make a simple thing like potatoes entree appropriate!