Sunday, January 12, 2014

¿Tacos de Papa? !Qué cosa!

So...I was trolling through Facebook on a random Tuesday, as is my way, and my high school buddy, Kim, who lives near Palm Springs and always observes Taco Tuesday in her household, posted that she made potato tacos that were "the bomb" for dinner. Potato tacos, I say? Never heard of such a thing!

So I interrogated my friend, researched recipes online, and watched a couple of YouTube videos until I was ready to make my own attempt. I must say, Tacos de Papa are muy delicioso, and I suspect that even your most carvinorous friends would enjoy them and not even miss the meat. For the next Taco Tuesday or Cinco de Mayo fiesta at your house, give these tasty tacos a try!

Oh, a few notes. Instead of russets, I used Rooster Potatoes. It's a potato with fluffy yellow flesh that the Brits use for making their chips, I believe. They've never been available in the US...until now. And I found them--of all places--at Wal-Mart! Also, though the lady in the video just browns the tacos on both sides in a dab of oil, but I shallow-fried mine in about a half-inch of oil so they were puffy and crispy. Of course, then they they were too crunchy to open up and add the toppings, so I just piled stuff on the outside of the shell and ate them sideways. Problem solved! Lastly, don't ask me why she calls it "avocado relish" and not, um, GUACAMOLE?? Whatever, Betty. Whatever you call it, I call it YUMMY!

Tacos de Papa (Potato Tacos)
(Source: adapted from Average Betty)

Potato Filling:
10-12 ounces Idaho Potatoes peeled and cubed (about 1 1/2 cups diced)--I used Rooster potatoes
1/2 cup diced onion
1 tablespoon diced jalapeno
2 ounces queso fresco cheese (farmer's cheese would work if you can't find queso fresco)
1/4 teaspoon cumin
salt and pepper to taste
12-16 corn tortillas

Avocado Relish:
1 ripe avocado, diced
1/4 cup finely chopped onion
1-2 tablespoons diced jalapeno
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1 small tomato, seeded & diced
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
salt & pepper to taste

Prepare the potatoes:
1) Peel and chop potatoes.
2) Place potatoes in a saucepan, cover with water and bring to a boil.
3) Lower the heat and cover saucepan with lid.
4) Cook 5-7 minutes, until al dente.
5) While the potatoes cook, saute chopped onion and jalapeno until soft and golden.
6) When the potatoes are cooked, drain water.
7) Using a fork, combine potatoes with sauteed onion and jalapeno, queso fresco, cumin and salt to taste.

Prepare the avocado relish:
1) In a bowl combine diced avocado, chopped onion, diced jalapeno (remove seeds for less heat), chopped cilantro leaves and stems, diced tomato, salt, pepper and lime juice.
2) Set aside until ready to use.

Prepare the tacos de papa:
1) Heat or steam corn tortillas and carefully fill with potato mixture.
2) Fold tortilla to form taco.
3) Heat one tablespoon canola or vegetable oil in a skillet. (I used a half-inch layer of oil.)
4) Fry tacos on both sides until puffed, golden and crispy.
5) Garnish with shredded lettuce or cabbage, avocado relish and your favorite hot sauce or salsa.

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