Vegan Tacos

Until I moved to California five years ago, I thought of tacos as ground beef leaking grease from hard taco shells topped with rubbery cheddar cheese and lettuce.  Here, tacos are served on freshly made, soft corn tortillas.   Fillings can include shredded beef, pork, avocados, roasted chili, diced tomatoes, queso fresco, shredded lettuce and even fingerling potatoes.  They are fresh and delicious.  Inspired by the vegan tacos at C Casa in Napa, I wanted to share this recipe.

Anaheim Chili and Corn Tacos

1 lb. fresh Anaheim or poblano chilis

1 medium white onion, sliced lengthwise into thin strips

2 tablespoons vegetable oil

1 cup frozen and thawed or roasted fresh corn kernels

1/2 teaspoon salt

2 cups shredded lettuce

1 cup diced tomatoes or pre-made salsa

1 avocado, diced

12 soft corn tortillas

-Char the chilies directly on the flames of a stove top or on a cookie sheet directly under the broiler.  Transfer the chilies to a bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and let stand for at least 15 minutes.  Once cooled enough to handle, peel the chilies, remove the seeds, membranes, and stems.  Cut chili flesh into 1/3-inch wide strips.

-Heat oil in a skillet over medium high heat.  Add onion strips and cook, stirring frequently, until softened, about 8 minutes.  Add the corn and salt, stirring, until the kernels are heated through.  Add the chili strips and continue to cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.

-Heat a dry cast iron skillet or griddle to high heat.  Cook each corn tortilla until heated through and slightly charred, flipping once.

-Divide filling between heated tortillas and top with lettuce, tomatoes or salsa, and avocado.  Serve immediately.

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