Tag Archives: tacos

Jacked-up Jackfruit

10 Jun

I have eaten jackfruit a few times and have long been curious to cook with it at home. Over a year ago, Mr. X and I tried some barbecue jackfruit tacos from the Seabirds truck, which we absolutely loved. When Elise posted about barbecue jackfruit recently and I already had a trip to the Thai market planned for our Sri Lanka meal, I knew the timing was meant to be.

I decided to go a step further and add fried avocado wedges, too, based on another Seabirds taco. The combination was wonderful! Here’s how it all goes down.

Barbecue Jackfruit Tacos with Fried Avocado

  • 1-2 cups barbecue sauce (I made a batch of my usual recipe
  • 1 can green/young jackfruit in water/brine, drained and rinsed
  • 1.5 cups black beans
  • 12 corn tortillas
  • 2 avocados, sliced into 16 wedges total
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • Splash of milk (any works)
  • 1/6 cup cornmeal
  • 1/6 cup wheat flour (any)
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Oil for frying (about 4 tablespoons)
  • Combine jackfruit with 1 cup of barbecue sauce either in a slow cooker or a pot on the stove. If using a slow cooker, set to low for 6 hours or high for 3. In a pot, bring to a simmer and cook for about 45 minutes to an hour. The goal is to get the jackfruit really tender. Once it reqches desired consistency, use two forks to shred the pieces until it resembles pulled pork. At this point, add black beans and more sauce to your desired level of sauciness. Let cook for another 20 minutes or so, until beans are hot.

    Toast or heat your tortillas using your preferred method. We put ours directly on a medium flame on the gas stove until they get some black marks, maybe 20 seconds per side. Set aside.

    Beat your eggs with milk in a small bowl. In another small bowl, combine the cornmeal, flour, garlic powder, salt and pepper. Dip your avocado into the flour mix, then the egg, and then the flour again. Place on a plate until all pieces are coated. Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add just a few slices at a time and brown on all sides. It takes about a minute per side, depending on how hot your stove gets. Don’t be afraid to let it get truly brown (but not black). Set fried pieces on a paper towel. Top each taco with a slice or two of avocado.

    Serves 4.

    We are eating these again tonight, so I will make a fresh batch of avocado tonight. Jackfruit has almost no flavor and barely any calories, so it relies on a delicious sauce. I added the beans for staying power, and they are a great addition. I suspect we may have a little filling left over, and I already have plans for topping some baked potatoes with it for lunch!

    Have you ever eaten or cooked with jackfruit? I plan to keep it in the rotation.


    Recipe remix

    5 Sep

    If you’ve been reading my blog for very long at all, then you know I repeat meals a lot each week. I don’t mind the monotony — it makes my life easier, and if a meal is good once, it’ll be good twice — but I do try to make little tweaks when I can. Here’s an example: on Saturday, I made us both soft tacos with zucchini and portobello mushrooms (see this post). On Sunday, we used the same basic concept but made some changes, which gave us these:

    Lentil Vegetable Soft Tacos

    • 1/2 cup lentils
    • 2 Portobello mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
    • 2 cherry peppers (or 1/2 a jalapeno), chopped and seeded if you want less heat
    • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon cumin to taste
    • Salt and pepper to taste
    • 5 corn tortillas
    • Suggested toppings: salsa, green onion, cilantro, nooch or cheese, sour cream, avocado

    Bring lentils and one cup of water (or vegetable broth, if you prefer) in a small pot. Simmer until lentils are tender, 15 to 20 minutes typically. Drain, lightly mash, and set aside.

    Heat a saute pan misted with spray oil (or us about a teaspoon of olive oil, if you prefer) over medium. Add the mushrooms and peppers and cook for two or three minutes, or until mushrooms soften and release some moisture. Stir in the lentils, cumin, salt and pepper and cook until combined and heated. Pile into corn tortillas with your favorite toppings.

    I served the summer squash on the side this time:

    (I forgot to take a picture until I had taken a bite of my taco!) And for dessert, we had incredibly juicy and sweet watermelon from the CSA box:

    Another remix were these bean patties I first made on my solo Saturday:

    They featured leftover black-eyed peas, shredded squash, a little flour, and some spices. While they were tasty, the texture was borderline terrible. I was following a method, and though I thought for sure I should salt and drain the yellow squash, the recipe didn’t say to, so I went against instinct. It was a big mistake, and the resulting patties were way, way too moist. So I redid them
    for lunch on Monday:

    It looks the same, but it tastes and feels a million times better. I didn’t measure anything, so this isn’t much of a recipe, but I wanted to include the basic method — what Caitlin fittingly called a Formula Meal earlier today — for reference.

    Bean and Summer Squash Patties

    • 1 medium or large shredded summer squash (zucchini, yellow squash, patty pan, whatever you have)
    • 1 1/2 cups of cooked beans (or 1 can), lightly mashed
    • ~1/4 cup of whole wheat flour
    • ~1/4 cup of rolled oats
    • 1 or 2 cloves garlic, minced
    • Other chopped veggies: carrots, peppers, and/or green onion are all basic additions
    • Preferred spices: cumin and oregano for Mexican-inspired, thyme and tarragon for something a little Provencal, sesame seeds and ginger for Chinese, cinnamon and allspice for Caribbean, curry for Indian, etc.
    • Fresh herbs: cilantro, basil, and/or parsley are all good choices
    • Oil for frying

    Salt your squash and place in a bowl or colander to drain for about 30 minutes. When ready to cook, squeeze out additional liquid and pat dry.

    In a medium bowl, combine everything but the oil with your hands. If there is too much moisture, add more oats or flour a little at a time. If the mixture is too dry, add more liquid a little at a time. It’s highly unscientific, but that’s the best way to achieve the right texture.

    When the consistency is to your liking, form into patties. You can make them bigger for veggie burgers or smaller to fill pitas or eat on their own.

    Heat about a tablespoon of oil (per batch) in a pan over medium or medium-low heat (the bigger the patty, the lower the heat should be to ensure the insides cook as well as the crispy outside). Add the patties to the pan and cook, flipping every couple of minutes, until they are browned. Serve however you prefer — on a bun, in a pita, or by themselves with a dipping sauce (ketchup, cashew cream, or tahini sauce all come to mind).

    Makes about four servings.

    I forgot to take a photo of our lunch, but we served them with lightly sauteed chard from the CSA box.

    Do you often do recipe remixing? Have any favorite “formulas” to share?

    Tofu Breakfast Tacos

    8 Jun

    I have been craving tofu lately, and it all started with an idea to make tofu scrambles for breakfasts last week. That quickly turned into a full-fledged obsession.

    Anyway, over the weekend, I saw corn tortillas in the fridge and decided to transform my usual scramble into breakfast tacos. They were so good and incredibly quick, so now I share them with you.

    Tofu Breakfast Tacos

    • Spray oil
    • 2 corn tortillas
    • 1 scallion, sliced (and green and white parts divided)
    • 1/4 block of tofu, either pressed or just quickly squeezed of its liquid
    • 2 tablespoons of salsa
    • 1 tablespoon of nutritional yeast
    • Optional for serving: fresh cilantro, more salsa, hot sauce, avocado, or sour cream

    Heat a medium saute pan over medium heat with a little spray oil. When ready, add the tortillas and heat just until warm. Set aside.

    Now add the white parts of the scallion (with more oil, if desired) and cook until they lightly soften, about 4 minutes. Using your hands, crumble the tofu directly into the pan. Add the salsa and the nutritional yeast and stir the mixture together. Cook until everything is warmed through, about 2 to 3 minutes. Serve in the tortillas topped with the green parts of the scallion and your favorite add-ons.

    Serves 1.

    You can see that I added a hefty amount of fresh cilantro to mine. There’s also a drizzle of hot sauce. Avocado would have been insanely good here, too.

    If you wanted to jazz things up, you could add a clove of minced garlic and 1/4 of a chopped bell pepper to the onion saute, as well as a handful of fresh spinach to the very end of the scrambling. I would probably do those things next time, though this mix was perfectly delicious on its own. Plus, you can’t beat the speed!

    Have you had any food cravings lately?