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Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Spicy Pasilla-Mushroom Tacos {she made, ella hace}

Spicy Pasilla-Mushroom Tacos {she made, ella hace} |
In preparation for National Taco Day (coming up on October 4th), Leslie and I are sharing tacos today for she made, ella hace.  In our house, tacos are as everyday as sandwiches.  If we can't decide what to eat, there's always tacos.  Have leftover meat?  Make a taco.  Have leftover mashed potatoes?  Mix 'em with a little greasy chorizo and turn them into a flauta (crunchy, rolled taco).  Don't know what to eat for breakfast?  Scramble up some eggs and veggies and enfold them in a warm tortilla.

Knowing this, you'd think I'd have shared more tacos on the blog.  But really, I haven't shared that many.  Like I said - everyday food.  Looking back over the last four and a half years, I notice that the things we eat the most often, are the things that I blog about the least.  Strange, huh?

So, when trying to decide something a little out-of-the-norm in the realm of tacos, I turned to my guru.  I knew that he'd be able to face me in a new direction...inspire me to look at tacos anew.

Spicy Pasilla-Mushroom Tacos {she made, ella hace} |
These tacos are vegan, if you leave off the cheese (or use a substitute), but they are still substantial due to the meatiness of the mushrooms.  And they are SPICY!  The thick chile paste gives you a nice kick in the pants. Even mi esposo, the carnivore, was satisfied after eating half a dozen...

It appears that Leslie and I were both feeling the meatless love, because she made Tacos de Frijoles con Queso today (a favorite in our house) - we've got Meatless Monday covered!  On a Tuesday.

Spicy Pasilla-Mushroom Tacos
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by Heather Schmitt-Gonzalez
Prep Time: 40 minutes (mostly unattended)
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Keywords: entree vegan nut-free chiles mushrooms Mexican

Ingredients (serves 4)
    for the pasilla seasoning paste:
    • 2 ounces pasilla chiles, stemmed & seeded
    • 8 cloves roasted garlic
    • 1 teaspoon dried Mexican oregano
    • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
    • 1/8 teaspoon ground cumin
    the rest of the taco filling:
    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 1/2 cup vegetable stock/broth
    • ~16 ounces mixed mushrooms (crimini, portabella, shiitake, morels, porcini, chanterelle), wiped clean, trimmed, and sliced thickly
    • big handful cilantro or epazote, chopped
    • kosher or sea salt
    • freshly ground black pepper
    to serve:
    • warm corn tortillas (steamed, grilled, etc)
    • finely diced onion
    • chopped chilantro
    • crumbled queso fresco (don't use if you want these to be vegan)

    making the seasoning paste:
    Heat a comal or heavy skillet over medium heat. Open up the chiles and toast them of the hot skillet until they soften and start to change color, pressing them down with a spatula; this should only take a few seconds on each side. Place them in a bowl and cover with the hottest tap water you can get. Set a small plate on top to submerge. Let sit for 30 minutes.

    Lift the rehydrated chiles out of the water and place them in the jar of a blender. Add 2/3 cup of the chile-soaking water to the blender, along with the remaining ingredients for the seasoning paste. Blend until smooth.

    finishing the filling:
    Heat the oil in a medium, heavy-bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Set a strainer over the pot and pour the chile paste through it, pressing down on the solids to work as much of the chile mixture through as possible. Cook the chile mixture for about 5 minutes, stirring almost constantly, until thickened.

    Add the broth, mushrooms, and cilantro (or epazote); cover partially, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. The mushrooms should be tender, and the sauce should coat them nicely (aka, it shouldn't be too runny - or your tacos will be super messy). Season to taste with salt and pepper.

    making the tacos:
    Scoop the spicy mushroom filling into the warm corn tortillas. Scatter onion, cilantro, and queso fresco over the top. Enjoy!

    -slightly adapted from Rick Bayless's Mexican Kitchen
    Spicy Pasilla-Mushroom Tacos {she made, ella hace} |
    What happens when two American girls who are both married to Mexican guys find out that although one of them lives in the U.S. and one of them lives in Mexico, they both love eating the same food?  Well, naturally they decide to get "together" the only way they can and cook up the same dishes.  Or perhaps take the same ingredients and talking about them in their own voice or using them in their own way. 

    Leslie and I have teamed up to occasionally cook/bake/make a our own versions of the same food.  We want to see how similar (or how different) they turn out.  Other times we will pick an ingredient and use it however we choose...or maybe just talk about it.  Good food knows no borders and we hope to share the food we love with you.  It's not a competition, it's a showcase.  We will post on the same day as each other and would love to hear your thoughts on what we've made and how you make it. 

    Join me (here at girlichef) and Leslie in her kitchen (at La Cocina de Leslie) for some delicious food.
    She Made, Ella Hace Banner- and