My Saturday started of at the Santa Monica’s Farmer’s Market on Pico and 22nd. I was promoting “Into the Beautiful North” for the Santa Monica Public Library. I did a classic Tacos de Patatas with a curtido – which turned into the word of the day as I explained it as a pickled cabbage El Salvadorian style. It’s based on one of the slaw recipes in my book, and I jazzed it up with seasonal flavors or orange and fennel and it was SO GREAT!! (recipes below)
I ended it with tequila shots with all my favorite people at the shoppe for my 55th birthday celebration.
I think my Johnny had some food in his mouth, because I’m sure he meant to smile. Any birthday party that ends with whooppee pies and cherry crunch is an excellent party!
Now back to business!! I’m exhausted from a week of celebrating me!
Tacos de papas con crema & fennel curtido
1 tablespoon olive oil plus some more!
1 jalapeño, seeded and chopped
½ a bell pepper, chopped
3 cloves minced garlic
1 teaspoon ground cumin
½ teaspoon dried oregano
1 pound red potatoes, cut into small cubes
2 teaspoons kosher salt or to taste
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
1 tomato, chopped
1 tbsp. finely chopped cilantro
12 corn tortillas
½ cup oil
1. Heat pan, add oil then the peppers and garlic with the cumin and oregano. Stir to coat and add the potatoes. Keep cooking on high heat until potatoes are cooked through and golden brown. Add the tomato and the cilantro, the salt and pepper and taste.
2. Heat oil in a clean 12″ skillet over medium-high heat. Spread 1 heaping tablespoon of potato mixture over half of each tortilla, and fold over to form a taco. Working in batches, add tacos to oil and fry, turning once, until golden brown and crisp, about 3 minutes.
3. Top with fennel curtido and vegan crema.
1 garlic clove, minced
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1/4 teaspoon ground coriander
1/2 teaspoon sugar
½ teaspoon oregano
zest and juice of 1 orange
1 large fennel bulb, core removed and shaved on a mandoline
2 cups shaved red cabbage
1 grated carrot
1 tablespoon chopped fennel fronds
1/2 cup shaved red onion
3 tablespoons minced Cilantro (about 1 bunch)
1 tablespoon capers – minced
In a medium bowl, whisk together garlic, salt, vinegar, olive oil, pepper, coriander, sugar, oregano, mustard, orange zest, and juice. Fold in shaved fennel, cabbage, carrot, fennel fronds, red onion, capers and cilantro. Toss well to distribute the dressing and serve. Preparing this a day in advance helps mellow the fennel.
Vegan Cilantro Crema
This is a great substitute for sour cream and tasty too!
Makes 1 1/3 cups
8 ounces vegan cream cheese
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup rice milk
1/2 bunch cilantro, minced
Soften Cream cheeze and whisk all together – consider not flavoring all of it with cilantro, and divide the batch.