Monday, September 6, 2010

A Mexican Meal from a German-Austrian Guy

I'm not quite sure how he does it (years of practice, I suppose, as well as spending quite a bit of time in Mexico), but my dad--whose ancestry is half German, half Austrian--makes a fantastic Mexican meal.

While I was growing up, we had Mexican night at our house a lot. This was usually done on the weekends, when there was plenty of time to prepare everything and let flavors simmer. My dad's specialities have always been tacos, burritos and guacamole. This is what we were treated to Saturday night at their house.
I don't have the recipes or even all of the ingredients of what my dad does and uses, so here's just a brief synopsis--and some pictures.

He always starts off with some guacamole, and the way I make guac is based off watching him for years and years (hence, the recipe and play-by-play for "Adrian guacamole"). We added some shakes of hot sauce to heat it up as we ate through the bowl. Guac is always the best with El Rey's plain tortilla chips.

For the taco and burrito meat, my dad mostly uses ground beef, and cooks it with onions, salsa, taco sauce and spices, like garlic powder and salt, chili powder, cumin and coriander. There are probably others, but I can't remember.

The tacos are pretty straight forward--take a warmed tortilla (in this case, we tried El Rey's whole wheat tortillas for the first time. They were very good and pretty pliable, which I haven't found with other wheat tortillas)--and fill with some meat, chopped tomato and lettuce and some shredded cheese. I think the cheese was a shredded blend of white Mexican cheeses.

For the burritos, in addition to the taco meat described above, my dad takes a tortilla (just a plain flour one this time) and added pinto beans he simmered on the stove top with spices and salsa and bits of cheese.
He usually uses Velveeta in the burrito, which might sound kind of weird, but it gives it a good, creamy, cheesy flavor. This time, however, he used a spicy chipotle white cheddar cheese.
He rolls everything up, places in a baking dish, tops with some extra taco sauce and cheese and bakes for probably 20 minutes on 350.

We had the tacos and burritos with some boxed Spanish rice on the side. Everything is so tasty, and even though he usually makes the same Mexican dishes, it never gets old!

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