As a kid in California, Sunday’s were a day spent with family at the local park. My Mom would pack bologna sandwiches, that big box of Laura Scudder potato chips, a watermelon and a gallon size of lemonade. That was all we needed to enjoy those all day trips. When we moved to Texas, things were a little different and Sunday’s became special for a different reason. Sunday morning beef tacos were and still are my most favorite tacos.
My parents were self employed and to earn some extra money they often would sell used items at the local flea market in Houston/Pearland. It was not an easy task, to say the least. So in preparation for the long hours at the flea market, my Mom would slow cook a chuck roast in the crock pot. Early Saturday mornings would consist of some quick chorizo con huevo tacos, but on Sunday we would feast on the most delicious beef tacos or tortas out of the slow cooker. A quick pico de gallo and sliced avocado was all we needed to enjoy this tasty meal.
And before we serve the tacos, there must be at least 3 salsa’s to choose from…..or at least in my house there is….lol!
Roasted Tomatillo Serrano Salsa with Avocado. This another variation the the “Green Sauce” as my friends have named it!
4 to 5 large tomatillos, peeled and washed
3 cloves garlic, skins on
6 to 8 serrano peppers, stems removed
2 Anaheim peppers, stems removed
1-2 large avocado
1/2 cup water or as needed
1/3 cup cilantro
Juice of 2-3 key limes or 1 regular lime
Salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
In a large skillet at medium heat, add the tomatillos, garlic, serrano and Anaheim peppers. Drizzle with a little olive oil and roast/char for 15 to 20 minutes, turning as needed.
Transfer the Anahiem peppers to a plastic bag and let them steam and cool. Once cooled, remove the stems, blistered skins and seeds. Remove skins from garlic.
Transfer all of the ingredients to the blender. Blend until smooth. Taste for salt. If it’s too thick, mix in a little more cold water. Garnish with a little more cilantro.
Pickled Sweet Onions and Radish~ Cebollas en Escabeche. I have prepared various versions of this recipe. I met a great Mexican chef, Alex Perez through my food page and his version of this recipe also included habanero peppers. If I had some, I would of added them too! Love, love, love a little hint of habanero in any escabeche! You must check him out on YouTube!
Cebollas En Escabeche
1 medium sweet onion, sliced thin
10 to 12 large radishes, sliced thin
4 to 5 jalapeños, sliced or diced with seeds
Juice of 6 to 8 key limes or 2 to 3 regular limes
3 to 4 tablespoons olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons oregano, crushed
Salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste
Combine all of the ingredients and let sit for 1 hour before serving. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for one to two days. The radishes will over power the flavors of the rest of the ingredients. If you want to preserve them longer, eliminate the radishes.
While most families were attending church service, my parents were working hard at the flea market trying to sell their goods. It was not always a succesful weekend, but the trips I did make with my parents to the flea market really taught me to work hard at whatever it is you do in life. And for me, without the stories of how a recipe inspires us, it would just be another taco recipe. “Mom’s Flea Market Tacos”
Slow Cooker Beef Tacos
- 1 cup water or beef broth
- ¼ cup vinegar from pickled jalapeños substitute with Mexican hot sauce or homemade red chile salsa
- 3-4 tbsps Maggi sauce or Worcestershire sauce
- 2 1/2 pounds chuck roast some marbling and fat yields more flavor!
- 1 tsp Salt
- 1 ½ tsps. Fresh cracked Pepper
- 1 ½ tsps. Granulated Garlic
- 1 tsp crushed Oregano
Chile Piquin Pico de Gallo
- 5 Roma tomatoes diced
- 2 cloves of garlic minced
- 3/4 c white onion, finely diced I didn't add onion on this day
- 1 1/2 tsps dried, crushed chile piquin
- 1/3 c cilantro finely chopped
- Juice of 1 large lime
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Add water, jalapeño vinegar, Maggi sauce to the bottom of slow cooker. Season the beef to taste on both sides with spices listed. Add to slow cooker.
- Cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 6 to 8 hours. Transfer the beef to a serving bowl. Shred the beef with two forks while it’s still warm. Ladle a little of the broth left in slow cooker over beef.
- On a preheated comal, griddle add the corn tortillas. Take a brush or small spoon and add some of the fat left from the beef in slow cooker onto tortillas as they warm up. Flip tortillas, as needed. Transfer to tortilla warmer or serve right away. Pile on some shredded beef and fresh salsa of your choice!
- Combine all of the ingredients listed. Cover and let sit for 30 minutes.