Leftovers, Pork, Tacos

Leftover Pork Tacos

I’m sure we’ve all had leftovers in our refrigerator and by the time you remember them you have to toss right into the trash.  I do that all the time!  It’s such a waste of food and I often think to myself I should have just made enough for one meal.

I’m not a huge fan of left overs.  I have to really love the dish to even want to eat the leftovers or I have to be able to reuse the leftovers to make a new dish.  That’s exactly what we have here.

With this dish I had left over pork chops that I turned into tacos.  These pork chops were very basic. They were slightly marinated then grilled.  If you have a left over protein that has stronger flavors you may want to remove the excess flavors by wiping off the meat or rinsing (yes I know, weird.)

That is where this recipe came from.  Just using leftover pork chops.  It was something simple and took very little time to prepare.  I had all the ingredients on hand and it came together in a snap.  This is why I always try and keep ingredients for tacos at my house.  Not only because tacos is it’s own food group to me, but also because you can always put together a taco dish if you have the basics.  Like tortillas, cheese, meat, onions, avocado, etc…the list goes on.

When I first thought of this I was worried it may have been odd to use cooked pork chops for a taco.  I was wrong! Take a look at the recipe below and give it a try. It’s definitely very good, very simple and cost-effective. Use those leftovers!

Leftover Pork Tacos

Ingredients:
1 1/2 C pork cubed (cooked)
1- medium white onion, diced
2- garlic cloves, chopped
3- mini peppers any color, diced
1- cilantro bunch, chopped
1- lime, juiced
1- avocado
1T- olive oil
2t- garlic powder
2t- onion powder
1t- paprika
2t- chili powder
1t- taco seasoning (low sodium)
Pinch: Salt and Pepper
6-8 Tortillas (corn or flour)
2T- Reduced fat shredded Mexican cheese

Directions: Heat medium sauté pan over high heat. Add drizzle of olive oil and sauté onions, garlic and peppers till softened. Remove from heat and add to medium size bowl. Add in pork and cilantro (reserve some), half the oil, lime juice and spices. Mix well and marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes.

When ready to eat, heat the mixture in a sauté pan with remaining oil on medium low heat till warmed through. Stir occasionally. Reminder, you are just heating the meat as the meat is already fully cooked.

I mashed the avocado and added cilantro, lime and salt. To assemble taco add meat mixture to tortilla, top with avocado mash and finish with sprinkle of cheese. Serve and enjoy!

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Seafood, Tacos

Shrimp Fajitas

Shrimp fajitas are an easy, simple and delicious dish.  Shrimp is a great alternative to other proteins.  It’s high in protein and low in fat however it is rather high in cholesterol.  That’s why I don’t make it several times a week.  Otherwise, I would.  Shrimp is quick to cook and can be used in so many different ways.  Pasta, tacos, salads, etc…the list goes on. 

I like to keep a good quality frozen shrimp in my freezer.  Maybe it’s frowned upon in the culinary world but we all need something healthy that you can de-froze rather quickly.  I figure it’s healthier then ordering takeout or eating something bad.

This is my take on Shrimp Fajitas.  These fajitas are so fresh tasting and full of flavors you’ll really enjoy them.  The fajitas are rather healthy as well.  You can use reduced fat cheese or no cheese at all.  The flavors are great and you really don’t need the cheese.  I’m just a firm believer that if it comes in a tortilla it should have cheese on it.  (That’s the cheese lover in me though.)

One thing I always say is that healthy doesn’t have to taste like cardboard.  It can be delicious and tasty and still healthy.  Follow me and I’ll show you how….

Shrimp Fajitas

Ingredients:
22-24- medium shrimp, uncooked and cleaned
6 – medium peppers (red, orange and yellow), cut into strips
2 – medium onions, sliced
1 – avocado, mashed
1 – lime, juiced
2 T – olive oil
1/2 T -garlic powder
1/2 T- onion powder
1/2 T-chili powder
1/2 T- cumin
Sprinkle: Salt
Sprinkle: Pepper
2 T reduced fat shredded cheese
6 Fajita size flour tortillas

Directions: In a bowl add the peppers and onions with 1 T of olive oil, lime juice and spices. Reserve some spices for the shrimp. Mix well. I grilled till they started to get slightly charred and tender. You can also roast in the oven or sauté. Once cooked set a aside.

Heat a medium sauté pan over high heat. I added tortillas one at a time and browned slightly on both sides. Then I wrapped in foil to keep warm.

In that same pan over high heat, add rest of olive oil and shrimp. Season with the remaining spices. Cook 3 minutes on one side then flip and cook another 3 minutes. Cook shrimp until it is pink. Remove from heat.

To assemble fajita add fork full of pepper and onion mixture, then 3-4 shrimp then top with mashed avocado and a sprinkle of cheese.  Serve immediately.

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Seafood, Tacos

Scallop Tacos

Happy Sunday! Where has the weekend gone?  I can’t believe tomorrow is Monday already!

It’s Taco Sunday tonight at my house!  I made scallop tacos.  It’s funny because a few years back I wouldn’t touch a fish or shrimp taco.  I fully believed that tacos were meant for steak or chicken.  It wasn’t that I didn’t like shrimp or fish because I love both those things.  I just thought it was weird to put that on a taco.  Fast forward a few years later and I love them! I make shrimp tacos often but today I wanted to try something out of the box.  That is where scallop tacos came from.  Scallops have a mild sweet flavor and  I thought it would pair well with certain flavors in a taco.  Check out the recipe and give it a try.  It’s a good take on a taco and great for a dinner party.  It’s sure to wow your guest and make a lasting impression with this elevated taco dish.

Scallop Tacos with Avocado Cilantro Crema

Ingredients:
16 sea scallops, rinsed
1 T low sodium taco seasoning
1/2 T olive oil
Sprinkle: salt
1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
1/4 cup queso fresco, crumbled or chopped small
4 tortillas, taco size

Avocado Cilantro Crema

Ingredients:
1 ripe avocado
1/4 cup + 1 T light sour cream
1 bunch cilantro
2 limes, juiced
1 jalapeño, seeds removed (keep seeds in if you want a spicier taste)
1 T milk
1 t salt  (more to taste)

Directions: In a blender or a food processor add all ingredients for the avocado crema.  Mix until smooth.  If it’s too thick just add a little more milk.  Put in the refrigerator until ready to use.

For the scallops, heat a medium saute pan on high.  Sprinkle the scallops with the taco seasoning and salt.  Once pan is heated add in the olive oil and scallops and cook 2-3 minutes on each side.  They will get a little dark in color from the taco seasoning however it’s not burnt.  Once scallops are done, set on a paper towel.  Heat the tortillas in a paper towel in the microwave for 30 seconds.  Next assemble the tacos.  Place 4 scallops on the tortilla and top with sliced onion, cheese and finish it off with the avocado cilantro crema.  Serve immediately.  Then enjoy!

Notes: Make sure you rinse your the scallops.  You don’t want to feel sand in your mouth.  You can add only 3 scallops to each tortilla if you’d like.  The sea scallops I used were a little smaller then normal so I put 4 on each tortilla.  The sauce should last in the refrigerator for a few days.  The lime juice should keep the avocado from turning brown.

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Pork, Tacos

Pork Carnitas!

Guess what day it is????????? Taco Tuesday!!  I wanted to share with you one of my favorite taco recipes, pork carnitas.  Please note that this is my take on pork carnitas and probably far from authentic but I love them.  I am a huge taco fan and I’ll tell you right now you’ll see a lot of taco dishes from me. I started making these tacos a few years back and I just love them.  In my book tacos are like their own food group just like bacon! LOL Maybe I’ll try the Taco Diet.  Is there such thing?  Haha! But really, I love making tacos.

So this is my pork carnitas recipe.  There is 2 ways you can make these pork carnitas. You can make them in the oven or in a pressure cooker.  I’ve done it both ways.  Check out the recipe below.

Pork Carnitas

Ingredients:

The pork:
3lbs -boneless pork shoulder, cut in bite size pieces
1T Oil
1/2 C Chicken Stock, no salt
2 Jalapeño , diced
1 large onion, cut in chunks or diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 cilantro bunches, chopped
2 oranges, juiced and cut into chunks
2 limes, juiced
1 T onion powder
1 T garlic powder
1/2 T cumin
1 T chili powder
1 t salt
1 t pepper

Directions: In a large bowl mix all above ingredients together well. Cover and put in the refrigerator for 2 -3 hours.

To bake: Preheat oven 300°.  On a large cookie sheet lay out the pork mixture. Bake for 1.5- 2 hour turning every 30 minutes. Depending on the oven it may take longer to cook. Once completed turn on broiler and cook for 5-7 minutes. Turning once.  This will give a slight crispy texture to the pork. KEEP AN EYE ON IT or it will burn!  Feel free to omit that step.  I don’t use the broiler in my house often because it makes my dogs very upset. 🙂

To use a Pressure Cooker:  This step is a lot easier in my opinion and I feel like the meat comes out better.  Add the mixture to a pressure cooker and let it come up to pressure and cook 55-65 minutes on medium heat.  Make sure there is plenty of liquid in the pot as you don’t want it to burn off. (And it will happen)  Add extra orange juice and chicken stock.   Once done, remove from the heat and let come down to pressure.  (I prefer the pot that goes on the stove and doesn’t have a quick release. Maybe I’m old school! lol) Once you open the lid you should have perfectly tender meat smelling so amazing.

Once meat is cooked, give it one last mix and remove any big chunks of the orange pieces and then it’s ready for the tacos.

8-12 Tortillas (flour or corn) (Amount will vary)

Toppings:
Chopped Onion
Chopped Cilantro
Queso Fresco
Chopped Avocado
Cilantro Jalapeño Sauce (See Recipe Below)

Cilantro Jalapeño Sauce:

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
1 cup sour cream
1 cup lite mayonnaise (or regular)
1/2 cup pickled Jalapeños or 2 fresh
2 T lime juice
1/2 -3/4 powder Ranch packet
2 T milk or buttermilk
1/2 t salt

Directions: Add all items above to a food processor or a blender and mix till smooth.  You can add more of an ingredient to taste.  If you want it spicier add more jalapeños or less spicy use less jalapeños.

Notes: You can omit the milk if you’d like.  When I put on tacos I always try and thin the sauce out slightly.  I’ve had family make this with Greek yogurt and sour cream which still had a great taste.  I’ve made this less fat with light sour cream and mayonnaise it comes out just as well and is a little more guilt free.  It’s great on tacos and can be used as a dip if you omit the milk.  It will thicken up as it sits in the refrigerator.  If that happens you can add in some extra milk or lime juice.  It’s great on anything actually.  I’ve used it for a taco salad and used as the dressing.

To assemble tacos add meat to your warmed tortillas, add your preferred toppings and sauce. Then enjoy!!

Note: This will make plenty of meat. It’s great for left overs!

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Beef, Tacos

Taco Tuesday!

Taco Tuesday is my favorite non-weekend day! I just love tacos.  Any kind of tacos, any toppings, any meat, any tortilla it fine. I would eat tacos every single day for every meal if I had a choice.  Unfortunately, I don’t do that. However, I do eat tacos probably more then the average person. I wonder how many tacos I’ve eaten over my life time.  Probably too many!

I’ve been trying to be healthy and lose weight so when I have that craving for tacos the best thing for me to do is make it at home. I then have complete control over what I put into the dish and I make it as guilt free as possible.

My favorite tacos, are steak! No question about it. Check out my steak street tacos recipe below.

Grilled Steak Tacos

Marinade:

2T-Soy Sauce

1/2- Cup Oil
2T- Red Wine Vinegar
4- Garlic Cloves, grated
3- bunches fresh cilantro, chopped
2 limes, juiced
1/2 T garlic powder
1/2 T onion powder
1/2 T paprika
1/2 T chili powder
Pinch:
Salt
Pepper

1lb- Flat Iron Steak

6 street taco tortilla, corn or flour

Directions: Whisk together all marinade ingredients then add in flat iron steak. Marinade for at least 2 hours, turning a few times.

Remove from marinade and let excess oil drip off. Grill the steak over medium heat until cooked to your liking. Cut steak into pieces.  Add the meat to heated tortillas and add your preferred toppings.  I use chopped onion, cilantro and queso fresco and sometimes sour cream or guacamole.

These will be your go to steak tacos recipe. It’s much healthier then take out and taste just as good.

Take a look at the pictures below.

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Traditional steak tacos. Street corn tortillas, cilantro, onion and queso fresco.
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This has avocado crema on the flour tortilla.