I could go on, and on, and on about the gourmet taco craze. It seems that new specialty shops, food trucks, and restaurant chains are jumping on the band wagon. And why let things be as they should? Traditional tacos? Lame. The new twist on an old favorite is consistently combined with unrelated foods. In case you need examples: chicken fried steak, crawfish, and brisket. Don't believe me that things are getting weird? Google this phrase: "Torchy's Tacos Roscoe" and feast your eyes on something you won't know how to feel about.
Let's face it. I love a good taco as much as anyone, but I still tend to sit on the more traditional side of the table. In light of current events, I gave writing a lamb taco recipe a shot. Because I have food A.D.D. (clearly my case isn't nearly as bad as the geniuses behind the aforementioned), lines tend to get blurred. That being said, I present to you a lamb taco that resembles a combination between a taco, burrito, and fajita.
Servings: 4-5 if you don't get crazy and pick out tortillas the size of a small pizza pan.
1/2 lb leg of lamb (or shoulder), sliced thinly into 1-2 inch strips
Corn or flour tortillas (count depends upon size) *It's easiest to pre-heat these before getting started.
1/4 medium yellow onion, sliced into strips
5 small sweet peppers (can substitute yellow or orange bell pepper)
1 jalapeno, seeds removed and sliced into strips
Chile powder and fajita seasoning to taste
A few words of advice before you begin:
Because there is a ton of prep work involved, do yourself a favor and get it done the night before. Trust me. Cooking in a kitchen that's disguised as a minor disaster makes things more difficult than necessary. Slice the veggies and store them in small reuseable containers.
Use as many fresh ingredients as possible. The difference is astounding.
Begin by brining a medium sauce pan of water to boil. Also, pre-heat a nonstick skillet on medium-high heat and drizzle with olive oil. Once the skillet is heated, add the onion and jalapeno. Add chili powder and fajita seasonings to taste. When the onions are translucent and jalapeno strips soft, add the sliced sweet peppers. Cook for an additional 1-2 minutes to keep the sweet peppers warm but still crispy. Transfer these to a serving bowl and set to the side.
Once the water has reached a rolling boil, carefully drop in the stips of lamb. Boil for no more than 3-4 minutes. This step tenderizes any connective tissue and removes excess fat. Continuously stir the lamb to keep the strips from sticking together. After 3 minutes, begin to carefully remove the lamb and transfer to the heated skillet. Sear the outside for 2-3 minutes being careful not to overcook the lamb. Also transfer the lamb to a serving bowl once cooked.
And now the fun part! Grab a warm tortilla and build a base of onion and peppers. Place the lamb on top of them. Next, add your favorite fixings (we used all of these listed below).
Optional Taco Fixings:
Fresh tomato and jalapeno pico
White queso (I used this recipe: http://www.jasonandshawnda.com/foodiebride/archives/2135/)
Shredded monterey jack cheese
Serve with your favorite beans and rice. Enjoy!