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Chorizo Tacos with Pico de Gallo and Avocado Crema

Serves: Makes 4 servings

Ingredients:



    8 corn tortillas, warmed, for serving (recipe to follow)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable or canola oil
  • 1 pound Mexican chorizo, casings removed if needed
  • ½ teaspoon Mexican oregano
  • ½ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ large white onion, diced
  • 2 large garlic cloves, minced
  • Queso fresco (optional)


Pico de Gallo:
  • 4 large plum tomatoes, seeded, cut into ¼-inch dice
  • ½ large white onion, cut into ¼ inch dice
  • 1 large jalapeño, seeds and ribs removed, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Avocado Crema:
  • 1 medium Hass avocado—halved, pitted and peeled
  • 2 teaspoons lime juice
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Homemade Tortillas:

Makes up to 24 tortillas

  • 2 cups masa harina (corn tortilla flour)
  • ½ cups warm water
  • ½ teaspoon salt (optional)
  • Vegetable oil (for brushing tortilla press)


Procedures:

Make sure to purchase Mexican chorizo, which is raw and needs to be cooked. Spanish chorizo, on the other hand, is dry-cured and ready-to-eat. Similarly, Mexican oregano is a completely different plant than Mediterranean oregano.

For the chorizo: Heat a large skillet over moderate-high heat, add the oil and heat until shimmering. Carefully add the chorizo to the pan and cook, stirring frequently, until lightly browned, about 5 to 7 minutes. While stirring, break up the chorizo into small pieces with a wooden spoon. Stir in the Mexican oregano, cumin, onions and garlic and cook until the onions are softened, about 2 to 3 more minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Transfer to a medium bowl.

For the Pico de Gallo: In a small bowl, mix together the tomato, onion, jalapeño, cilantro and lime juice using a silicone spatula. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. Let sit for 5 minutes before serving.

For the avocado crema: In the bowl of a small food processor fitted with a metal blade, add the avocado, sour cream and lime juice. Process until the mixture is smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed with a silicone spatula. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and pepper.

To serve: Divide warm tortillas between individual serving plates, top with chorizo mixture, pico de gallo, and avocado crema. If desired, sprinkle queso fresco on top and serve immediately.

Homemade Tortillas

Note: Follow directions on mesa package as some brands may require different amounts of water.

Whisk masa and salt in a medium to large bowl; let sit for 5 minutes. Stir in 1½ cups warm water; knead in bowl until dough forms. The dough should feel firm and springy. If the dough seems too dry or too wet, add a little more water or masa until the right consistency is achieved.

Roll a golf ball-sized portion of dough. Cut two pieces of wax paper into the shape of the tortilla press. Lay one piece of paper on the surface of the open press. Place the dough ball in the center and place another piece of paper over it. Press down until the dough has spread to a diameter of 6 inches. If tortilla crumbles, dough is too dry (add more water); if it sticks to the wax paper, dough is too wet (add more masa). Repeat, pressing out 2 more tortillas.

Heat a large cast-iron skillet or griddle over medium-high heat; lightly brush with oil. Cook 2–3 tortillas until charred in spots and edges start to curl, 1–2 minutes. Turn; cook through, about 15 seconds. Transfer to a kitchen towel or tortilla warmer lined with towel; fold over to keep warm. Repeat, in batches, with remaining dough. Serve immediately or refrigerate and reheat.

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