Monday, April 30, 2012
Weeknight Meal--Gringa Taco
So, I don't know about you, but I don't do elaborate cooking on weeknights. I usually get home around 5:30ish, and the kids have informed me on numerous occasions that they will literally starve to death if they don't see food by 6:30. Since I don't think about what I make for diner until approximately 5:40, I usually root around and see what we've got, then make something up. I try to keep the pantry reasonably well stocked, because there's nothing worse than figuring out what to make only to find that you are missing a crucial ingredient. And you had better believe that I am not running out to the damn store to get the missing ingredient on a weeknight.
So, tonight I noticed a couple of forlorn boneless pork chops skirting dangerously close to their expiration date. There were also some commercially made tortillas. Pork tacos! Pork carnitas, slow cooked, would have definitely been more authentic, but we do what we can.
First, make up a marinade. It's going to be hard to give exact proportions because I don't measure anything unless I'm specifically following a recipe. I just throw stuff together and hope for the best. If I had to guess, the marinade would be something like this:
2 cloves of chopped garlic
juice of one lime
2 T vegetable oil
1 T honey
1/2 tsp ancho chile powder, maybe a bit more
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp basil
And would look like this:
Slice up some onions, then throw the whole thing in a hot pan. I used a cast iron skillet for this because it holds its heat well. At first, it will look pretty anemic:
But if you have a little patience and let the residual liquid cook off, it will start to brown nicely, and end up like this:
Set everything out on the table. Cringe at the thought that you are putting out ketchup for your ketchup-mad son, even though you don't see how ketchup goes with pork tacos. Or rice and beans. Or pineapple, for that matter.
Finally, warm up tortillas, put some pork and onion mixture in a tortilla, add some salsa (homemade would have been better, but cut me some slack--the tortillas would have been better homemade too) and some fresh cilantro, and you're good to go! Yes, I know there's cheese on there too. Yes, I know that these kind of tacos are not supposed to have cheese. I just happen to like cheese.
Congratulations, you have just successfully fed the family tonight. Please ignore your daughter as she eats the beans out of the rice but refuses to eat the rice, and don't look as your son dumps 1/4 cup of ketchup on his pork.