The area Taco John's is closed. It has been for quite awhile...so long that I don't even remember when it happened. A year ago? More? Who knows. All I know for sure is that Taco Tuesday, 6-pack and a Pound, and Nachos Navidad (in season) are no longer available to clog my arteries. I must now get my Mexican fix at home.
Not that creating homemade meals is a bad thing. After all, cooking is my passion, and, of course, most things that come out of my kitchen are infinitely tastier and more healthy than the Taco John's menu. In fact recently, a taco recipe from Food & Wine magazine caught my eye. Chipotle-Rubbed Salmon Tacos calls for simple ingredients that I almost always have on hand, and while Hubs is not a fruit salsa fan, even he had to admit that the Apple Cucumber Salsa was a perfect pairing. Both dishes earn bonus points with me for coming together quickly...almost in less time that it would have taken me to travel to the next town, hit the drive-thru of Taco John's, and return with a bag of that greasy dinner. I might even dare to say that Taco John's can stay closed when I have Chipotle-Rubbed Salmon Tacos On My Plate.
Chipotle-Rubbed Salmon Tacos
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 teaspoon fresh lime juice
2 teaspoons chipotle chile powder
2 teaspoons grated orange zest
2 teaspoons sugar
1 pound skinless salmon fillet, cut into 4 pieces
1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon olive oil
8 corn tortillas
1 avocado, mashed
1 avocado, mashed
Apple Cucumber Salsa (recipe below)
1 cup shredded cabbage
Preheat oven to 350°.
Whisk the mayonnaise with the lime juice.
Combine the chipotle powder with the orange zest, sugar, and season with salt to taste.
Rub each piece of salmon with 1 teaspoon of the olive oil and then with the chipotle-zest mixture.
Let stand for 5 minutes.
Wrap the tortillas in foil and bake for about 8 minutes, until they are softened and heated through.
Meanwhile, heat a grill pan.
Season the salmon with salt and grill over high heat until nicely browned and just cooked through, about 3 minutes per side.
Gently break each piece of salmon in half.
Season mashed avocado with a little salt.
Spread the mashed avocado on the warm tortillas and top with the salmon, Apple Cucumber Salsa and the cabbage.
Drizzle each taco with the lime mayonnaise and serve right away. (Makes 8 tacos)
Apple Cucumber Salsa
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled and diced
1/2 English cucumber, diced
1/2 small red onion, diced
1/2 small red pepper, diced
1 1/2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
kosher salt, to taste
Toss the apple with the cucumber, onion and pepper.
Stir in the vinegar and sugar, season with salt.