Tuesday, March 6, 2012

tuesday's gone

Something for Taco Tuesday that I made a week and a half ago, meant to post last Tuesday, and then promptly forgot what day it was when Tuesday rolled around. This is why I can't watch series television. I never know what day it is anymore.

These Flautas were originally tacos with soy protein crumbles in place of ground meat, but I wasn't ready to stand for that. I don't think there's a need to make faux meat when there are so many vegetables and grains and legumes to play with.

Ingredients like lentils. Which, when heated through with the chile-espresso seasoning, made as hearty a flauta filling as the ground meat mixture I made for Matty. It also felt extra sneaky to get the fun of the crispy taco without completely deep-frying the flautas. Sure, it's a little more time-consuming, but you can use the free time while they're in the oven to knock out a few things. Like figuring out what day it is.

Chile-Espresso Flautas
adapted from Je Mange La Ville

For the seasoning
3 T. chile powder
2 T. cumin
1 t. instant coffee
1/2 t. dried cilantro
1/4 t. dried orange peel

For the flautas
2 T. vegetable oil, divided, plus additional for tortillas
1 c. dried lentils, cooked according to package directions
1 lb. ground beef
1 large onion, diced
1 large green bell pepper, diced
1 jalapeno, seeds and ribs removed, diced
24 6-inch corn tortillas

1. Combine all seasoning ingredients. Divide evenly into two medium saucepans. Heat over medium heat for a minute or so, until you can smell all of the spices.

2. Add 1 T. of oil to each pan, and mix until you have a thick paste. Add the half of the onion, half of the bell pepper and half o the jalapeno to each pan and saute until soft, 3-4 minutes. Add the cooked lentils to one pan and the ground beef to the other. Heat the lentils until warmed through, and cook the beef until no longer pink. Set both mixtures aside.

3. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.

4. Heat about 1/4 c. oil in a 10-inch pan and heat over medium heat. Fry the tortillas, one at a time, for about 2-3 seconds on each side, just enough to soften the tortillas. As they're done, transfer the tortillas onto a foil-lined baking sheet.

5. When all of the tortillas have been fried, start assembling the flautas. Add a scant 2 T. of filling (either the beef or the lentils) in a line in the middle of each tortillas. Roll up tightly and leave seam-side down on the baking sheet. When they are all filled, bake them for 25-30 minutes until golden brown all over. Let cool slightly and serve with sour cream (or Greek yogurt) and guacamole.

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