Food for thought … tacos!

taco-6

I’m not much of  meat eater. I don’t have any issues with eating meat, it’s just not my food of choice. I’m more of a fruits-and-vegetables kind of gal. With chemo, protein is important to rebuild my blood between treatments, so I am making a real effort to include animal protein in my diet. What I have found is, chicken is much more palatable in a taco.

I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that you can also get protein from vegetables, but given the challenges of chemo, I want to give my body every opportunity to heal between treatments so I am following my oncologists guidance and adding animal protein to my diet. It is my personal choice. That said, if you prefer, give these a go stuffed with vegetables, I think you will find them just as satisfying.

Here is the recipe. Enjoy!

 

Ingredients: (makes 6 tacos):

4 organic chicken thighs

1 box Old El Paso Hard & Soft shells (comes with 6 taco shells and 6 soft flour tortillas)

cheddar cheese (I use extra sharp cheddar)  – 12 slices, not too thin, not too thick.

6 toothpicks

1 cookie sheet

tin foil

organic black pepper

organic garlic powder

organic paprika

optional – 2 organic avocados, 2 organic tomatoes, sour cream, Tabasco sauce, Uncle Matt’s Organic Orange Juice – Pulp Free, and whatever else you like to put on your tacos

Preparation: 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line cookie sheet with tin foil.

Chicken – I prefer dark meat, so I get organic chicken thighs, skin on. (I’m in Florida so I get the Publix Greenwise thighs).  Set them in a baking pan skin side up in about an inch of water. Season with organic black pepper, organic garlic powder and organic paprika.

One thing with chemo, for me, too many competing tastes and things go awry, so this is simple, yet tasty. Feel free to change up the seasoning based on your personal preferences.

Cook the chicken for an hour and a half.  The key is to cook it a long time so the meat will melt off the bone. The water will steam the chicken and keep it moist. Once the chicken is cooked, dice the chicken with the skin on and set aside.

The Build:

Get the taco shells and tortillas, the cheese, the diced chicken and the toothpicks ready. Lay down one flour tortilla. Lay one slice of cheese along the left side, being careful that the cheese doesn’t hang off the tortilla. Repeat along the right side of the tortilla. Break one hard taco shell along the bent seam so you can lay it flat. Lay the two sides of the hard taco on top of the cheese on the soft tortilla, rounded edges matching the rounded edges of the soft tortilla. Spoon diced chicken into the middle. Don’t over fill as you will want room for your toppings. Fold the flour tortilla in half (soft tortilla on the outside with the cheese, hard taco and chicken in the middle) and secure with a toothpick (skewer the toothpick through the hard and soft shells).  Lay finished taco on its side on the cookie sheet.  Continue this way for all 6 tacos.

Cook in the oven for 20 minutes.

While the tacos are cooking, dice the tomatoes and whatever else you like for toppings. I keep it simple with tomatoes and guacamole and a dash of Tabasco sauce. My husband adds sour cream to his.

Guacamole – to make simple fresh guacamole, spoon the avocado into a bowl. Mash with a fork. Add 1 or 2 tablespoons of orange juice (we use Uncle Matt’s Organic Orange Juice – Pulp Free) and mash it all together. The orange juice gives the guacamole a nice flavor and keeps it from turning brown.

When the tacos are done, peel apart the top just enough to add your toppings and enjoy!

These tacos are easy to reheat the next day as well. Just lay them on their side on a tin-foil lined pan and cook on 350 until heated.

I have made these substituting steak (I used fillet mignon) for the chicken and it was equally delicious.

 

 

 

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