Guest Post: Mushroom “Chorizo” and Potato Tacos by The Yum Yum Factor
We have a guest in our kitchen! The fabulous Carole of The Yum Yum Factor is back with a spicy, vegetarian taco recipe that will bring an authentic flair to your table without all of the calories.
I was a late bloomer in the kitchen but I have always been kind of a professional eater. Even as a kid, I was choosing my friends based on what I thought their mothers could offer me in way of snacks. The last thing I needed was another manga cake friend named Andrea who had a mom serving up Kraft Dinner for lunch when I could befriend young Rui who’s mom was slinging bacalhau fritters . After years spent travelling, eating and exploring, I gained some kitchen chops and by 2010 I started my blog, The Yum Yum Factor, originally as a way to catalogue the dishes that I cooked for friends and family so they would stop pestering me for recipes. I consider myself a solid home cook with an adventurous palette, a high tolerance for burns and cuts and a desire to eat the world.
I had my first chorizo and potato taco almost 30 years ago in Merida, the capital of the Yucatan. On Sundays, they close the streets to traffic in the city centre and let street vendors peddle their wares, people dance in the middle of the road and everywhere you look, there is food. I picked up a couple little tacos de chorizo con papas and a handful of napkins and found a table. They were really spicy and the red tinged grease dripped all over my dress but it was so delicious that I didn’t care – it was love at first bite. Nobody would ever try to claim that it was, in any way, a healthy dish so, over the years, I have tried to cut down on the fat by adding ground mushrooms to my chorizo, a la blend and extend. This always works really well so that got me wondering whether I could just skip the sausage altogether?
After much experimentation, I realized that the mushrooms worked best when I roasted them before grinding them and once I got that worked out, the rest all fell into place. To try to replicate the pork sausage feel, I was going to use pork lard but if I realized that if I could skip that, I could make this a vegetarian/vegan dish so, instead, I used vegetable shortening, adding a bit of miso for some “umami” and then threw in all of the spices that I would use if I were making homemade chorizo. Because this dish is not dripping with pork fat, the tacos needed a little bit of sauce and a drizzled of Salsa Verde is fabulous. If you use the cheese, it’s a great vegetarian dish and if you skip it you’ve got yourself a vegan “chorizo” taco.
Mushroom “Chorizo” and Potato Tacos
This recipe makes approx 6 cups of filling. All of the elements can be made ahead of time, just reheat the “chorizo” potato and the corn tortillas right before it’s time to eat.