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Central American tacos? They're called gallos.

For lunch or a snack in Central America, it's common to see sandwiches made with fresh corn tortillas instead of bread. The soft tortillas are wrapped around savory tidbits. In Costa Rica, they're called gallos; in Mexico, tacos. For this meal, you offer several fillings with soft tortillas. Guests mix foods as they wish. Eat slaw as a relish in tortillas or as a salad. The tortillas and most of the fillings can be made ahead. Tortillas start with dehydrated masa flour (corn tortilla flour); look for it in your supermarket's flour section or in Mexican and Central American food stores. Or buy warm, freshly made corn tortillas. Central American Tortillia Sandwiches

Fresh corn tortillas (recipe follows)

Black bean filling (recipe follows)

Picadillo filling (recipe follows)

Browned chorizos (recipe follows)

Cabbage slaw relish (recipe

follows)

Salsa (homemade or purchased)

About 1 1/2 cups guacamole

(homemade or purchased) Set warm tortillas, wrapped in a napkin, in a basket. Offer bean and picadillo fillings, chorizos, slaw, salsa, and guacamole in separate containers. Add your choice of fillings to a tortilla, then roll up to eat. Makes 16 to 18 sandwiches; serves 6 to 8. Fresh corn tortillas. In a bowl, stir 23/4 to 3 cups warm water into 5 cups dehydrated masa flour (corn tortilla flour), adding just enough water so dough holds together well but is not sticky. Shape into a ball. Cover with plastic wrap. For each tortilla, place a 1/4-cup ball of dough on a piece of plastic wrap; cover with another piece of the wrap. Pat with your hands to form an even, 6-inch-diameter round slightly less than 1/8 inch thick. Peel off plastic wrap. As tortillas are formed, cook over medium-high heat on a hot ungreased griddle or in a 10- to 12-inch frying pan, turning them often. After first turning, press occasionally with a wide spatula. Cook until tortillas look dry and are lightly flecked with brown, I 1/2 to 3 minutes. Stack tortillas as cooked. Wrap them in a towel, then in foil; keep warm. (If made ahead, cool, wrap airtight in foil, and chill up to overnight. To reheat, place foil wrapped tortillas in a 350' oven until hot, about 15 minutes.) Makes about 18. Per tortilla: 119 cal.;2.5g protein; .8g fat,25g carbo.; a 3 mg sodium; 0 mg chol. Black bean filling. Sort debris from I 1/2 cups ( I 0 oz.) dry black beans. Rinse and drain beans. In a 3- to 4-quart pan, combine 2 tablespoons salad oil; I large onion, chopped; and 3 cloves garlic, pressed or minced. Cook, stirring, over medium heat until onion is limp. Add beans and 1 quart regular-strength chicken broth. Bring to boiling, then simmer, covered, until tender to bite, 1 to 1 1/2 hours. With a potato masher, coarsely mash beans. Add salt to taste. Beans should have texture of thin mashed potatoes; if thinner, stir and simmer, uncovered, until thicker. (If made ahead, cool, cover, and chill up to overnight. To reheat, stir over low heat; add a little water if beans stick.) Pour into a bowl and sprinkle with 2 tablespoons shredded jack cheese. Per tablespoon: 73 caL; 3.8 g protein; 2.2 g fa t; 10 g carbo.; 15 mg sodium; 0. 6 mg chol. Picadillo filling. In a 10- to 12-inch frying pan, crumble 1/4 pound ground lean beef. Stir over medium-high heat until browned and crumbly. Add 1 medium size onion, chopped, and 2 cloves garlic, pressed or minced; stir until onion is limp. Add 1 tablespoon canned tomato paste; 1/3 cup lightly packed chopped cilantro (coriander); 1 large thin-skinned potato 1/2 lb.), peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes; and I 1/2 cups water. Cover and cook over low heat for 10 minutes. Trim ends and dice 3/4 pound patty pan squash; add to pan. Cover and cook over low heat until vegetables are tender when pierced, I 0 to 15 minutes longer. (If made ahead, cool, cover, and chill up to overnight; reheat, covered, over low heat.) If soupy, simmer uncovered, stirring often, until most of the liquid evaporates. Add salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with cilantro sprigs. Per tablespoon: 37 caL; 2.2 g protein; 2.2 g fat,2 g carbo.; 12 mg sodium; 8 mg chol. Browned chorizos. Pierce 6 to 8 chorizo sausages (about 11/2 lb. total) in several places with a fork (if casings are inedible, remove meat and crumble). Place meat in a 10- to 12-inch frying pan and cook on low heat, turning often (or stirring crumbled sausage), until browned, 10 to 15 minutes; spoon off and discard fat as it accumulates. Cut whole sausages in half lengthwise. Drain on paper towels. Per 1/2 sausage: 126 cal; 4.5g protein; 12g fat, 0. 3 g carbo.; 273 mg sodium; 23 mg chol. Cabbage slaw relish. In a large bowl, mix 1/2 cup salad oil and 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar. Add 6 cups lightly packed shredded cabbage, 1/2 cup shredded peeled carrot, and 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onion; mix. Add salt and pepper to taste. Pour into serving bowl. Dice 1 large firm ripe tomato and place on top of salad. Per 3/4-cup serving: 100 cal.; 0. 9 g protein; 9. 1 g fat; 4.7 g carbo.; 14 mg sodium; 0 mg chol. El
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Title Annotation:recipes
Publication:Sunset
Date:Jun 1, 1990
Words:908
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