tacos

Completely Board Post #13: Spinach Tortillas

Veg-am's Completely Board - Vegan Month of Food 2014

 

I may or may not have cheated a bit and added this pin after I decided to go with this theme.  I really don’t remember.  It may be that it’s just the one that pushed me over the edge in making the theme decision.  Either way, I’ve been looking forward to trying these Spinach Tortillas from Allergy Free Alaska (non-vegan site, vegan post).

I’m way too lazy to roll out tortillas by hand, so I made mine a little smaller and used my handy tortilla press (I got 14 tortillas).  If you’re a taco fan, and don’t have a tortilla press, please for the love of all that’s good, get one.  I got mine on sale at a kitchen store for about ten bucks, so it’s not a huge investment.  Not only am I a taco fan, I’ll stick pretty much anything inside a tortilla and eat it.   A hot tortilla with just Earth Balance?  Also a winner.  Daiya cream cheese and grape jam? I’m there.  But I digress…

I love corn tortillas, but I’ve been trying to find a tortilla that isn’t corn based and doesn’t crack to pieces when you roll or fold them.  Guess what?

Spinach Tortilla

I was holding it closed in this picture, and the tortilla was hot and fresh, but look…it rolls without cracking.   When it’s cold, it cracks, but what about just warming it up?

I had these simple Beyond Meat “beefy” crumble and avocado tacos for breakfast this morning.  I put the tortillas, one at a time, over the beefy crumble as it was cooking in the skillet to heat it up. And then tried it out.

Spinach Tortilla Taco

It folded.  It didn’t crack.  Yes, I had tacos with a side of tomatoes for breakfast.  Don’t judge.

I did have to add more water than the original poster said.  I had to add 7 Tbsp after the setting of the dough.  But it was easy to work with and had a nice pliability from the psyllium husk powder.  I also never got any “bubbling” to know when to flip it.  For me, 30 seconds a side was perfect.

This is definitely the best non-corn tortilla I’ve had.  After I had my first bite, I had to get a non-gluten-freer to take a bite because I thought it might have a weird chew to it.  Yeah, not weird, it’s just that I haven’t had a flour tortilla in over seven years and I forgot they had a chew to them that corn tortillas don’t have.  Because it was new, I was standing there trying to decide if I liked it while I was searching for the Earth Balance in the fridge.  By the time I found it (in the crisper drawer?!) that tortilla was gone. I guess I liked it.

This tortilla was a little thick compared to what I’m used to (and I think mine were a bit thinner than the nickel-thickness suggested), but I think at this thickness, it could completely work as a flatbread or even a pita replacement.  In fact, I had a couple for dinner slathered in homemade hummus.

I am looking forward to getting out the mama wooden tortilla press and trying to make a real burrito one day.

National Guacamole Day: Portobello Tacos

Yes, it’s the day avocado lovers all over America have been waiting for.  It’s National Guacamole Day.  I can’t think of a better day to join in solidarity with the vegans of Austin, Tx who have been participating in a month-long Taco Cleanse.

Besides my mother (the mushroom-hater turned “this is my favorite of all your foods”) requested more portobellos.  She wanted a repeat of the MAT lettuce wraps, but in the interest of getting more posts for Vegan MoFo I pleaded with her to agree to try them another way.  She conceded, but only if I promised that liquid smoke would be involved.  Done.

We, along with my sister who was coming to dinner, are big taco fans so I decided to try my hand at portobello tacos. We’re all so glad I did! Cooked this way, the portobello has a nice meaty texture. It looks pretty meaty too. Maybe even a bit too much. But, I promise, that’s all mushrooms and spices in there!

Tuck those mushrooms into some warm, soft corn tortillas with some lettuce and tomato (aren’t those tiny heirloom tomatoes gorgeous?). Top it off with some creamy guacamole, some cool “cheezy creme”, and a little of your favorite salsa and enjoy the great combination of flavors and textures.

They’re super filling. I could only handle two before I was full.

Portobello Tacos | Veg-am

Portobello Tacos

Makes 12 tacos

12 warm, soft corn tortillas (note #1 below)
1 recipe Taco Portobello Mushrooms (recipe below)
1 recipe Cheezy Creme (recipe below)
Guacamole (note #2 below)
Chopped Lettuce (note #3 below)
Diced Tomatoes
Your favorite salsa (note #4 below)

Fill your tortillas with Taco Portobello Mushrooms, lettuce, tomatoes.  Top with a little (or more than a little) each guacamole, Cheezy Creme and Salsa.

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Taco Portobello Mushrooms:

8 small portobello caps (about a pound), stems removed, caps thinly sliced
1/4 cup  Water

Marinade ingredients:
2 Tbsp olive oil, plus more for brushing skillet
2 Tbsp Coconut Aminos (feel free to use soy sauce if you’re not soy-free)
1 tsp Liquid Smoke
1 Tbsp Cumin
3/4 tsp Onion Powder
3/4 tsp Garlic Powder
1/2 tsp Paprika
1/4 tsp salt
Cayenne Pepper, to taste

In a large bowl, mix together all marinade ingredients with a fork.  Add the mushrooms to the bowl and toss until well coated.  Allow to marinate for about 30 minutes.

Preheat large cast iron skillet over medium heat.  Brush a thin layer of olive oil on skillet.  Add mushrooms and 1/4 cup of water. Stir regularly and cook until the mushrooms have released their own water and all the water has cooked out.  Cook it just a little longer until  mushrooms start to dry just a bit (about 10 minutes total cooking time). This is probably about 2 minutes longer than you’d think.  But the additional time is what gives the meatier texture. About halfway through cooking, while there’s still a little water, you can add any additional salt, some fresh ground black pepper, or additional seasonings to taste.

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Cheezy Creme

Sometimes things not working out the way you planned is the best thing.  I wanted to break away from using the processed non-dairy cheeses.  So, I originally started out to make just a cheezy sauce but didn’t like it at all. I kept tweaking it until I landed on this.  It has the flavors of a nutritional yeast based “cheezy” sauce with the texture and coolness of a cashew “sour cream”.

3/4 tsp Sweet Paprika
1/2 cup Water
1 cup Raw Cashew Pieces
1/4 cup + 1 Tbsp Nutritional Yeast
2 Tbsp Tahini
2 tsp Onion Powder
1 large clove Garlic
2 Tbsp Lemon Juice
1/2 tsp salt

Blend all ingredients in a blender, scraping down sides as necessary, until creamy. This will probably take 6-10 minutes depending on the strength of your blender.  Put in a small container. Taste for salt and stir in additional if necessary (remember there’s also salt in the mushrooms, salsa and guacamole and salt accordingly).  Refrigerate for at least an hour to allow flavors to marry and creme to thicken.

If you happen to have any of this left over, it makes a good chip dip by adding chipotle Tabasco to taste.

Notes:
1. Tortillas: I used homemade using the recipe from Viva Vegan! by Terry Hope Romero.  Store bought ones should work, just warm them up so they have enough flexibility.  I even used some crunchy taco shells the next day just to try them out.  It was good, but with this taco, I like the soft tortillas better.

2. Guacamole:  I’m a guac purist.  There are lots of recipes floating around with tomato and onion.  They’re ok, I suppose, but I don’t really want them.  Then there are the ones with sour cream and/or mayo.  Don’t even let me hear you thinking about those. The best guac is the one made of just ripe avocado, lime juice, garlic and salt.  I don’t usually measure what I put in, and I often get a bit lazy and just use garlic salt.  But 2 years ago on National Guacamole Day, I actually measured a batch.  You can find my basic guacamole recipe here. Depending on how much guacamole everyone likes, you might want to double up.

3. Lettuce:  I usually use romaine for tacos.  But this time, I had some leftover butter lettuce.  It worked great.  Use iceberg if you roll that way.

4.  Salsa: I like all kinds of salsas.  But for tacos, I prefer the non-chunky, plain ol’ tomato, medium-heat salsa.  The Trader Joe’s Salsa Autentica is my favorite.


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1 food 5 ways, Navy Beans, Way #2: Italian Tacos

I wanted to try something easy and different. This was both! Pretty tasty too.
Italian Tacos
Ingredients:
  • 1-1/2 cups navy beans
  • 1 cup of your favorite marinara or pizza sauce (I used 1/2 cup of the quick pizza sauce from Vegetarian Times with 1/2 cup of water – because it’s REALLY thick – salt to taste and a couple squirts of agave to cut the acid of the strong tomato flavor)
  • Crunchy Taco Shells
  • Chopped/Shredded Romaine Lettuce
  • Mozzarella Style Daiya
Directions:
In a small saucepan over medium heat, mix the navy beans and marinara sauce. Heat, stirring occasionally, until heated through and the sauce has thickened up a bit, about 10 minutes.
Put some of the bean mixture in each shell and top with Romaine and Daiya.
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Since this was a pretty short post, now would be a good time to ask a question I’ve been wondering about. I was thinking about making myself a pdf of all the 1 food 5 ways posts so I’d have a hard copy of all these recipes complete with pictures. If I do that (after mofo is over of course), would it be helpful to make it available to you? Not for a charge, just to share.
Ciao!
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