Tag: mexican

Tortas de Chilaquiles – Mexican Sandwiches

I’m a simple woman. I see chilaquiles, I have chilaquiles.

The first time I had them was at Puerto Alegre in San Francisco roughly 10 years ago. I fell in love with the dish and red mole immediately. Both of these are hard to come by here in the Netherlands so I’ve had to make due with instant sauces and Thai-Mexican mashups of my own making.

The cookbook Comida Mexicana by Rosa Cienfuegos surrounded by a few empty tomatillo husks.

Comida Mexicana – Rosa Cienfuegos

Lucky for me, GoodCook (one of my favorite Dutch cookbook publishers) were kind enough to send me a copy of their newly released a translation of Comida Mexicana (UK only) by Rosa Cienfuegos. It’s a stellar read. With amazing photography by Alicia Taylor. As well as wonderful personal story of creating a home away from home.

There’s lots of stuff I want to cook from this book, but the tortas de chilaquiles (a chilaquiles sandwich) was my number one.

A closeup of salted black totopos (fresh fried nachos made from fresh tortillas).

Sourcing Mexican ingredients

As mentioned, it can be hard to find Mexican ingredients in the Netherlands. In the past 10 years the situation has improved greatly however. So I was able to order tomatillos and jalapenos to make fresh salsa verde, as well as fresh tortillas to fry my own totopos from Westland Pepers. The tortillas are made by Tortillería Taiyara, who supplies all the best eateries and tokos in the Netherlands. You can also order your totopos ready-made from her.

A scathering of empty green tomatillo husks.

Schnitzelgate

I decided to make mine with tofu schnitzel because I am trying to cut back on meat. To make this I froze my tofu straight from the shop. Thawed it. Pressed it and then coated it in panko. You are of course free to use veal, which the original recipe calls for, or buy storebought schnitzel because why the fuck not.

A jar of salsa verde.

All this? For a sandwich?

This recipe may seem like a lot of work for a sandwich but it’s a DAMNED good sandwich and you can skip a bunch of steps by going with store-bought totopos, schnitzels and salsa verde (if you’re lucky enough to have any nearby).

A tortas de chilaquiles (chilaquiles bread roll) with chilaquiles made with black totopos, sour cream, tofu schnitzel and feta cheese.

Tortas de chilaquiles - Chilaquiles sandwiches

Dorothy Porker
A recipe for tortas de chilaquiles (Mexican chilaquiles sandwiches) from the cookbook Comida Mexicana by Rosa Cienfuegos, made vegetarian with tofu schnitzel.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Tofu freezing, thawing and pressing time 2 d 30 mins
Course Lunch, Snack
Cuisine Mexican
Servings 6 tortas

Equipment

  • Freezer, if making your own tofu schnitzels
  • Heavy object, if making your own tofu schnitzels
  • Griddle pan, if making your own salsa
  • Blender or food processor, if making your own salsa
  • Deep fat fryer or frying pan, if making your own totopos
  • Deep plate x2, if making your own schnitzels
  • Large frying pan x2

Ingredients
  

For the salsa verde, you can also use store-bought

  • 21 oz - 600 g tomatillos fresh or canned
  • 20 jalapeno peppers
  • 1 white onion coarsely chopped
  • 1 clove garlic
  • 1 T - 15 g salt
  • 1 bunch coriander coarsely chopped

For the totopos, you can also use store-bought

  • neutral oil for deep fat frying
  • 12 fresh corn tortillas cut into 8 pieces each
  • salt to taste

For the tofu schnitzels, you can also use store-bought

  • 1 egg whisked
  • 2/3 c - 150 ml milk the heaviest milk you can get, nutmilk is fine
  • 1 T - 15 g salt
  • freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 1 pack firm or semi-firm tofu frozen in its liquid, thawed, then pressed for 30 minutes and cut into 1/2" - 1 cm slices
  • 1 c - 100 g bread crumbs I used panko (Japanese breadcrumbs) because I'm fancy, but use whatever
  • sunflower oil for shallow frying

For the tortas de chilaquiles

  • 4 c - 1 l salsa verde recipe to follow, or store-bought
  • 2 lbs - 1 kg totopos recipe to follow, or store-bought
  • 6 teleras (Mexican bread rolls) I used what the Dutch call 'an Italiaanse bol', look for something slightly firmer on the outside but soft on the inside
  • 2 T - 30 ml sour cream
  • 2 T - 30 g cojita cheese I used crumbled feta
  • 6 tofu schnitzels recipe to follow, or store-bought

Instructions
 

First, make the salsa verde

  • If you were able to source fresh tomatillos, remove the husk and wash 21 oz - 600 g of tomatillos. If using tinned tomatillos drain and pat dry.
  • Griddle them on a very hot griddle with 20 jalapenos and coarsely chopped white onion until they turn black on the outside. You can also do this directly over a hot flame if you dare.
  • Move all of the blackened tomatillos, jalapenos and onion to a blender or food processor with 1 clove of garlic, 1 T - 15 g of salt and 1 bunch of coarsely chopped coriander and blend until fine. If the sauce is too coarse add water until you get your desired consistency.

Now, make the totopos

  • Heat oil in a deep pan or in a deep fat fryer to 180° C - 360° F.
  • Fry the tortillas cut into 8 pieces in batches until crisp and starting to brown. Usually once they start floating and stop bubbling they are done.
  • Drain on some kitchen towel and season with salt.

Next, make the tofu schnitzels

  • Mix the whisked egg with 2/3 c - 150 ml of milk, 1 T - 15 g of salt and freshly ground pepper in a deep plate. Place in the slices of tofu and leave to soak for 3 minutes.
  • Place 1 c of bread crumbs in another deep plate and heat a decent layer of sunflower oil in a large frying pan.
  • Coat the tofu slices in breadcrumbs and fry until golden and crisp. This should take 5 minutes per side or so.

Now, make the chilaquiles

  • Heat almost all of the 4 c - 1 l of salsa verde in a large frying pan on a medium heat. Add the totopos and a cup of water, stir and heat through for 5 minutes or so. If you like your chilaquiles a little crispier, I'd skip the water and the 5 minutes.
  • Remove from the heat.

Tortas de chilaquiles, ASSEMBLE

  • Cut your teleras or whatever bread rolls you're using in half, top with a scoop of the cooked chilaquiles, the sour cream, cojita or feta, tofu (or other) schnitzel and a little bit of uncooked salsa verde and dig in.

Notes

  • Obviously these tortas do not keep and should be eaten straight away.
  • The salsa verde will keep for about a week in an airtight container in the fridge and are great for dipping chips or having on any number of tacos.
  • Totopos will keep for about a week in a cookie tin.
Keyword chilaquiles, Mexican food, sandwiches, tortas

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Mexican Chorizo Tofu Tacos

Sometimes being stuck indoors brings out the best in you. Or me. As the case may be.

I’ve been trying to figure out how to make a vegan version of Mexican chorizo for ages. I had figured out the spice mix for Lady and Pups’ chorizo and shrimp burger was the way forward, but the mix itself was too dry and for years I just couldn’t figure out how to fix it.

Then for some reason it hit me. The answer had been right in front of me the entire time. I just mixed it in with some tomato paste, as I do with harissa tofu puffs, and landed on a majestic beast of a sauce.

Chorizo sauce is boss

The sauce is great like this, with tofu mince on a taco. But it also works with fish, mixed with some mayo as a dip and stuck on a cheese melt. Basically I haven’t stopped eating this since I first made it.

Start off with the tacos below and eat your way up from there.

How do I eat Mexican chorizo tofu tacos?

I like to eat two of these as a main course for lunch or dinner, a cold beer would do nicely with this as well.

If you have a bigger appetite than mine and this doesn’t sound like it’ll even remotely do, serve it with an quick coleslaw with store-bought grated red and/ or white cabbage, a finely diced jalapeno and some olive oil, white wine vinegar and maybe even a drop of Frank’s Red Hot or Tabasco or two.

What you’ll need

I have also included these recipes in the recipe below, so you don’t have to click back and forth to recreate this.

A bamboo platter on a cement backdrop, on the platter are two fried tacos with minced tofu and a red sauce as well as some pickled shallots and fresh coriander

Mexican Chorizo Tofu Tacos 🌱

Dorothy Porker
A super tasty take on Mexican chorizo, made vegan with tofu mince and a banging sauce that you can slap on pretty much anything.
Prep Time 1 hr
Cook Time 30 mins
Course Brunch, Dinner, Lunch, Main course
Cuisine Mexican, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings 2

Equipment

  • Heavy pan or other heavy object
  • Kitchen towels
  • Big bowl
  • Sieve, optional
  • Small saucepan
  • Glass jar
  • Small blender or pestle and mortar
  • Two large frying pans or skillets

Ingredients
  

For the pickled shallots, or get store-bought

  • 3 small shallots cut into thin rings
  • 3/4 c - 150 ml white wine vinegar or similar
  • 3/4 c - 150 ml water
  • 1 t - 5 gr salt
  • 1 clove garlic smashed and peeled
  • 3 black peppercorns
  • pinch sugar

For the minced tofu, or get ready-made (vegan) mince

  • 9 oz - 250 gr firm tofu get it from an Asian supermarket and thank me later
  • 1/2 T - 7 gr corn flour or other starch
  • pinch salt
  • neutral oil for shallow frying, I use sunflower

For the Mexican chorizo sauce

  • 3 T - 45 gr tomato puree
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled
  • 1 1/2 t - 7.5 gr chili powder
  • 1 1/2 t - 7.5 gr smoked sweet paprika
  • 1/2 t - 2.5 gr hot paprika or cayenne more if you're nasty
  • 1 t - 5 ml red wine vinegar Balsamic will also do
  • 1 t - 5 ml tequila omit of dining with minors or people who don't drink alcohol
  • 1 t - 5 gr salt
  • 1/2 t - 2.5 gr ground black pepper
  • 1/2 t - 2.5 gr dried oregano Mexican if you can get your hands on some
  • 1 pinch cumin
  • 1/4 c - 60 ml olive oil

To finish

  • 4-8 burrito or taco skins I prefer corn, but you do you
  • sunflower oil for shallow frying
  • 1 t - 5 gr chili flakes optional
  • bunch coriander freshly chopped
  • feta crumbed, optional

Instructions
 

Pickle the shallots, or get store bought

  • You can also use store-bought pickles. If you are making these, be sure to make them the night or morning before so the shallots are properly pickled.
  • Bring 3/4 c - 150 ml white wine vinegar to the boil with equal parts water, 1 t - 5 gr salt and a pinch of sugar.
  • Place 3 sliced shallots in a small jar, make sure you separate the rings out a little before you do this.
  • Poor the warm vinegar mixture in with the shallots. Add the smashed clove of garlic and 3 black peppercorns.
  • Leave to cool on the kitchen counter before moving them to the fridge.

Start the minced tofu, or get ready-made (vegan) mince

  • You can also use store-bought mince of choice, pick up the process for this from step 3 under the header 'Back to minced tofu'. If you do make your own, make sure you start this part of the recipe about 45 minutes before you want to eat.
  • Press 9 oz - 250 gr of tofu by placing it between some kitchen towels and placing a heavy object on top for 30 minutes or so.
  • Now make the sauce so you can mix this in with the warm tofu mince later.

Make the chorizo sauce

  • In a small blender or pestle and mortar mix together 3 T - 45 gr tomato puree, 2 cloves of garlic, 1 1/2 t - 7.5 gr chili powder or flakes, 1 1/2 t - 7.5. gr sweet smoked paprika, 1/2 t - 2.5 gr hot paprika or cayenne, 1 t - 5 ml red wine vinegar, 1 t - 5 ml tequila (if using), a pinch of cumin and 1/4 c - 60 ml olive oil to a smooth paste.

Back to the minced tofu

  • Crumble the tofu into a bowl. The pieces should remain of uneven in size and shape, as if you've fried off some actual minced meat in a frying pan.
  • Thinly coat the crumbled tofu with 1/2 t - 7 gr corn flour and salt generously.
  • Fry the crumbled tofu in a thin layer of sunflower oil in a (non-stick) frying pan. Do this in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan and ensure crisp. Fry the tofu until golden and partially crisp.

Create your tacos

  • Fry up 2-4 tortilla skins in a shallow layer of sunflower oil. You should end up with four each. You want the edges to be crisp and the centers to remain kind of chewy. You can spice the oil with some chili flakes while it heats up for added oomph. Salt while draining on some kitchen towels post-fry
  • Drain the tofu on some kitchen towels and then mix in 2 to 4 T's of the sauce until the tofu is evenly coated.
  • To compose a taco: place 2 tortilla skins on a plate. Top with a few tablespoons of the tofu mixture. Finish with a generous hand of pickled shallots, some freshly chopped coriander and feta if using.

Notes

The chorizo sauce will keep in the fridge in a well-closed container for about a week. Mix it with mayo or stick it on a cheese melt. The possibilities are endless.
The pickled shallots will keep in the fridge in a well-closed container for about a month. 
Keyword chorizo, Mexican food, tacos, tofu, tofu mince, vegan, vegan mince, vegetarian

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Sweet Potato and Harissa Tofu Tacos

A few weeks ago Mr. Porker was off for some work thing for an entire weekend. So I decided to bake myself some bread, got some fancy salted French butter and made myself some dips and spreads to go with it.

The problem is that home-made bread isn’t all that nice on day two, let alone mine. So here I was with a bucket of hummus and pail of harissa and nowhere to put it. Or so I thought.

The ingredients for sweet potato and harissa tofu tacos sprinkled on a concrete background

I love it when a plan comes together

Then I remembered I also had a sweet potato wondering around somewhere. And I always keep a bag of tortillas around in case I need to wrap something or fry up a fresh batch nachos. And so, the sweet potato harissa tofu taco was born. I happily had this for dinner (and lunch) 3 days in a row so this really is a good one.

When do I eat sweet potato and harissa tofu tacos?

These really work any time of day. If you are planning to make all the elements yourself it will take you some time in which case breakfast is probably not an option.

What you’ll need

A small plate with a blue trim with a tortilla turned towards the camera on top, it is filled with cubes of baked sweet potato a hint of red sauce and tofu and fresh parsley. The plate sits on a blue background with some more sweet potato and parsley scattered in front and an off-white dish towel with a leopard print in the background.

Sweet Potato and Harissa Tofu Tacos

Dorothy Porker
A vegan taco recipe with filling sweet potato, creamy garlic and chickpea spread and crispy punchy harissa tofu mince.
Prep Time 30 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Resting time 8 hrs 30 mins
Course Dinner, Lunch, Main course
Cuisine Fusion, Mexican, Middle Eastern, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings 2

Equipment

  • Clean towel
  • Large saucepan
  • Ladle
  • Oven
  • Food processor
  • Heavy pot or other heavy object
  • Kitchen towels
  • Frying pan x2
  • Small food processor

Ingredients
  

For the garlic dip (optional, store bought hummus works as well)

  • 7 oz - 200 gr dried chickpeas soaked for a minimum of 8 hours or overnight
  • 3 heads garlic cloves separated but not peeled
  • olive oil
  • t t - 5 gr baking soda
  • 1/4 c - 60 ml olive oil
  • pinch salt
  • 1/4 c - 60 ml lemon juice fresh preferred
  • 1 t - 5 gr salt
  • 1/4 t - 1.5 gr cumin powder
  • 1/2 c - 120 ml tahin
  • t T - 15 gr miso
  • 3 ice cubes
  • 3/4 c - 180 ml cooking liquid from the chickpeas, see instructions

For the harissa (optional, store bought harissa works as well)

  • 1/4 t - 1.5 gr coriander seed
  • 1/4 t - 1.5 gr fennel seed
  • 2 T - 30 ml red wine vinegar Balsamic also works
  • 3 cloves garlic smashes and peeled
  • 2 T - 30 gr tomato puree
  • juice of half a lemon
  • 4 T - 60 ml olive oil
  • 1 1/2 T - 45 gr smoked sweet paprika
  • 1/4 t - 1.5 gr chili flakes
  • pinch nutmeg
  • pinch black pepper
  • pinch salt

For the minced tofu - optional, store bought (vegan) mince is fine too

  • 9 oz - 250 gr firm tofu get it from an Asian supermarket and thank me later
  • 1/2 T - 5 gr corn starch other starchy flours also work
  • pinch salt
  • neutral oil for frying

For the sweet potato

  • 1 large sweet potato peeled and cut into chunks
  • 1 T -15 gr corn flour or any other starchy flour
  • neutral oil

To finish

  • 4 tortilla's I prefer corn, but you do you
  • bunch curly parsley optional, chopped

Instructions
 

Make the chickpea garlic dip (optional, store bought hummus works as well)

  • You can also buy ready-made hummus of choice.
  • Preheat an oven to 160° C - 320° F.
  • Spread the individual unpeeled garlic cloves in an even layer across an oven tray. Coat evenly in olive oil and salt generously.
  • Roast the garlic cloves until they have gone soft and squishy, in my oven this takes about 30-45 minutes.
  • Drain the soaked chickpeas, place them on a kitchen towel and dry them off gently.
  • Move the chickpeas to a heavy-based pan with the baking soda and cook on a low heat while stirring vigorously for 2 to 3 minutes or so.
  • Cover the chickpeas until they are submerged in about an inch of cold water and bring to a boil.
  • Leave to simmer until they are soft. This should take 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the quality and age of your chickpeas. Use a ladle to remove any foam or chickpea skins that come bubbling to the surface. Add water if your chickpeas appear to be drying out, but haven't softened yet.
  • Drain the chickpeas, making sure you hang on to the cooking liquid. You'll need it for the next step.
  • Peel or smoosh the garlic out of their skins.
  • Place the chickpeas,1/4 c - 60 ml olive oil and garlic mush into a food processor along with a first scoop of the cooking liquid. Blitz for 2 minutes. Add more of the liquid if your food processor starts to struggle.
  • Finally add 1/4 c - 60 ml lemon juice, 1 t - 5 gr salt, 1/4 t - 1.5 gr cumin, 1/2 c - 120 ml tahin, 1 T - 15 gr miso and 3 ice cubes and blend again for at least 2 minutes until well combined and fluffy. If your food processor is struggling again use a wooden spoon to beat the ingredients together until the last of the ice cubes as dissolved completely.

Make the harissa (optional, store bought harissa works as well)

  • You can also buy read-made harissa.
  • Toast the 1/4 t - 1.5 gr of coriander and fennel seeds in a dry pan until aromatic.
  • Add the toasted coriander and fennel, 2 T - 30 ml red wine vinegar, 3 cloves of garlic, juice of half a lemon, 1/4 c - 60 ml olive oil, 1 1/2 T - 30 gr sweet smoked paprika, 1/4 t - 1.5 gr chili flakes and pinches of nutmeg, black pepper and salt to a small food processor and blend until smooth. Taste and add more salt or spice as you see fit.

Make the minced tofu - optional, store bought (vegan) mince is fine too

  • You can also use store-bought mince of choice.
  • Press 9 oz - 250 gr of tofu by placing it between some kitchen towels and placing a heavy object on top for 30 minutes or so. I use a cast iron Dutch oven but use what you have.
  • While this is happening we're going to start the potato cubes and come back to the tofu once those are in the oven.

Bake the sweet potato cubes

  • Preheat your oven to 175° C - 350° F.
  • Lightly coat the sweet potato cubes in sunflower oil and 1/2 T - 7 gr of corn starch. Do not salt the cubes until removing them from the oven.
  • Place the sweet potato cubes on a sheet of parchment on a baking tray and cook until they start to brown on the edges. Usually this takes between 20-30 minutes. Be sure to check regularly because sweet potato has a tendency to burn fast.

Back to the tofu

  • Crumble the tofu into a bowl. The pieces should remain of uneven in size and shape, as if you've fried off some actual minced meat in a frying pan.
  • Thinly coat the crumbled tofu with 1/2 T - 7 gr corn flour or any starch at hand and salt generously.
  • Fry the crumbled tofu in a thin layer of neutral oil in a (non-stick) frying pan. Do this in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan and ensure crisp. Fry the tofu until golden and partially crispy.
  • Drain on kitchen towel before mixing with 2-3 T - 30-45 gr of the harissa.

Compose your tacos

  • Heat your tortillas the way you normally would, I like to heat mine in a dry non-stick frying pan until they begin to crisp.
  • Now assemble your tacos: use a back of a spoon to spread the ehr... spread on your taco, top with the harissa coated crispy tofu and oven baked (and salted!) sweet potato and a few sprigs of fresh parsley.
Keyword baked potato, harissa, minced tofu, sweet potato, tacos, tacos de moronga, tofu

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