Before we begin you have to know something, these two recipe are not Mexican. I repeat, these are not Mexican recipes.
Let’s address this post in two parts. First we begin with the homemade taco seasoning mix recipe. Those little packages of taco seasoning mix are not used in authentic Mexican cuisine. Okay so many of the spices used in the mixes are spices also used to season authentic Mexican food. But that doesn’t make it authentic nor Mexican. It would be like taking an American hamburger but instead of the buns it was served on a baguette with Camembert cheese and calling it American food. You’d be like what the hell is this. So no matter how many commercials, or text on those packages, tell you that it is authentic, it isn’t. Sorry for the mini-rant but passing off things as authentic, of any world cuisine, that aren’t kinda irritates me.
I honestly don’t know why the seasoning and the tacos made with it are called Mexican. It’s more like Mexican food wannabe or Mexican inspired. The most obvious explanation is to point the finger at the fast food restaurants. Perhaps the most famous being the one with the cute talking dog asking for their food. Even if the junky restaurants name their food after real authentic Mexican dishes, at least they don’t try to pass themselves off as authentic Mexican. The sad thing about that though is that many people who don’t know any better consider that junk Mexican food or even worse authentic Mexican food. Sadly this then gives Mexican food an undeserving bad reputation.
Rant aside, when you are hung over or feel like stuffing your face with cheap greasy food those junky tacos really hit the spot. That is probably the reason why those taco seasoning mixes are popular. If you are a label reader like me the ingredients list will leave you a bit frightened. Usually the first three ingredients are salt, MSG and sugar. Not very good at all. But making your own homemade taco seasoning mix is very easy. Here is how.
- 1 tsp ground cayenne or chile powder
- ½ tbsp. sweet paprika
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp onion powder
- ½ tbsp ground cumin or 1 tbsp whole cumin*
- 1 tsp granulated garlic
- small pinch sugar
- ½ tsp dried oregano
- ⅛ tsp ground black pepper
- ⅛ ground coriander or ¼ tsp coriander seeds*
- 1 tbsp a.p. flour
- *If using whole spices you will need to place all ingredients in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder to grind them. If using ready ground spices them just place all ingredients in a bowl and throughly mix until very well combined.
Second part, the tacos. Growing up in a Mexican home my mom made real authentic tacos. But once she got to taste the junk food tacos she craved them every once in a great while. So we did have them for dinner on a few occasions. Also a very once in a while occurrence was when she would buy the kits to make those tacos for us kids.
My hubby loved that junk taco restaurant. In case you are wondering he doesn’t consider it Mexican but rather a restaurant type all its own. On several occasions his craving was so bad that I had to learn to make them for him. But I refuse to call this tacos, no sir in my home they are called garbage teykos. We haven’t found hard shells here so usually we eat them with commercially prepared tortillas. On this day I was just too lazy to go out and buy packaged tortillas so instead used my homemade. Yes, it is a waste for perfect homemade flour tortillas but the laziness won that round.
I wonder how many people that only have time to look over the pictures, will leave a comment saying this is good Mexican food. I’m giggling to myself with that thought. Many of you already know how to make these garbage teykos so proceed as usual. For those that don’t, cook 500 grams or 1 lb of ground beef along with the spice mix above, some chopped onion and garlic. Serve alongside your favorite toppings or any you see in these photos. Enjoy and eat responsibly.