Walnut Chorizo Tacos

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These are the be-all and end-all of plant based tacos in my opinion. I absolutely love them, and love every part (even including making them). Believe me when I say this recipe is special, and on some level I knew that it was before even tasting the finished product. When the taco filling was roasting the first time making it, I told Burton “I don’t want to get ahead of myself, but I have a feeling this will be the last taco recipe I make, like.. probably ever”.

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3 of these tacos are about 25% of your caloric total for the day (less than 600 calories) but meet 50% of your nutrient goals, including 30% your DV iron and folate, over 100% Vitamin C, 21% potassium and over 50% both magnesium and fiber (although I find the dietary guideline for fiber (like 25g or something stupid) a bit low considering we evolved eating 100g fiber/day and people who don’t eat western diets still do (and have much more diverse microbiomes and less allergies, cancer risks, insulin secretion and inflammation because of it. Fiber is directly related to healthy aging in more ways than I can count).

I usually serve these tacos like pictured above, in platter form, because more intimate and interactive meals is the ticket. Sitting close, passing the hot sauce or serving spoon back and forth, is so much more engaging than just eating what’s on the plate in front of you. I based my recipe on the one here, which is a good jumping off point or if you have limited ingredients, but nothing about it says ‘chorizo’ to me personally.

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I love and make this recipe so much that I started storing all the spices for it combined in a jar so I can just scoop out 5 tbsp for quick mixing with the wet ingredients. The leftovers store perfectly, to reheat I just add a splash of water to a hot pan, add the taco filling and a lid; no oil needed.

Walnut Chorizo Tacos

(makes 12) 

ingredients

4 cups cauliflower florets

2 cups walnuts

2 tbsp paprika (smoked always preferred)

2 tsp ground cumin

1.5 tsp salt

2 tbsp roasted hatch chilis (or any diced peppers/chilis of choice)

2 tbsp tomato paste

splash of low sodium soy sauce

1 tsp oregano

1 tsp ground coriander

1 tbsp nutritional yeast (optional but, yeah, do it)

1/4 tsp garam masala (or if you don’t have on hand, add a small pinch of cinnamon, cloves and black pepper)

1 tbsp olive oil (or more to taste. we avoid oil whenever possible, but to be more true to chorizo, this would obviously be an incredibly oil-heavy recipe so add more if desired)

2 tbsp red wine vinegar

2 garlic cloves

12 corn tortillas

Finely diced white onion, cilantro, lime quarters and hot sauce for serving 

 

Preheat oven to 375

In a food processor, pulse the cauliflower and walnuts until evenly ground but still textured and not a paste. Dump into a large bowl. 

Combine all the spices and wet ingredients into a paste, then add to the ground mixture, tossing to thoroughly coat.  

Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Spread the ground mixture thinly and bake for 30 minutes, stirring halfway. Watch for hot spots in your oven as the walnuts can darken much faster. 

(This step is optional, but after roasting I like to dump all the filling from one tray onto the other, then use the empty baking sheet as a lid to create steam, softening and fluffing up the filling while the corn tortillas are heating)

To warm and soften the corn tortillas, I put a skillet over medium heat with no oil, add a tortilla and heat for 10 seconds, then lift and put the next tortilla under it, building a tall stack and trapping in steam. 

 

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