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Vegetarian Birria Tacos

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This trendy taco is made with beef but I am changing it up and making it with mushrooms!

What is Birria? Let’s start with what is this taco…Per Eater “In the 1950s a taquero named Don Guadalupe Zárate moved to Tijuana from Coatzingo and opened a street stand to sell birria de chivo, a regional Mexican dish consisting of oven-roasted goat in adobo, alongside the preferred taco filling for locals, carne asada, and adobada (the regional name for al pastor). He soon switched to beef for a greater yield and profit, goat being so lean. Coatzingo legend has it that Zárate was told by someone to add more liquid so his birria wouldn’t burn, and he turned out the soup-style birria de res known today as Tijuana-style: a cut similar to beef brisket, and a generous portion of beef fat, slowly cooked for hours in an adobo, with enough water in the stock pot to make a rich stew. “If you mention his name to all the Poblanos in the birrierias, they’ll know who he is — he was the first one,” says taquero José Moreno of New York City’s Birria-Landia.” Full article can be found here.

These tacos are amazing street in Mexico and made its way to the US. Now we are making it our own. Dying to try this but keep to my vegetarian diet – decided to try it out with something that could hold the flavor like meat – mushrooms are often a great substitute for meat dishes that require a hearty and rich taste.

  • 2 dried Red chilis
  • 2 jalapeño peppers
  • 2 red fresno peppers
  • 1  large white onion, quartered
  • 1/2 white onion chopped
  • 6 cloves garlic – with the skin on
  • 3-4 medium tomatoes, quartered
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil ( not to be used all at once)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 clove
  • 1/2 teaspoon whole cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • pinch teaspoon allspice
  • 1/2 teaspoon of ancho chili spice
  • 1 Bay leaves
  • 1 1/2 cup mozzarella (or more if desired)
  • 1 package of baby portabella mushrooms, quartered ( ~ 15 mushrooms)
  • 1/4 bunch of cilantro cut
  • 8 corn tortillas
Chopped veggies
  • Start by take the dried chilis and boiling them in 1/2 cup of water until they are soft. Take out of water (Reserve water for later on) and remove seeds.  I just cut one side and squeeze out the seeds.
  • Next, in a sheet pan take the tomatoes, onion (1 that is quartered), garlic ,jalapenos (remove the ribbing and seeds) , fresno pepper(remove the ribbing and seeds) and cover with 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Bake until soft – this takes me about 15 minutes on 425 then broil until the vegetables have burn marks. 
  • Add vegetables, chilis, and water the chilis were boiled into blender. Blend until smooth.
  • You can use the pot you were boiling the water and add 1 tablespoon of oil and heat. Once hot and spread over the bottom add the sauce from the blender. Then add all the spices listed above and 4 cups of water. Simmer until boiling.
  • Then add in cut mushrooms and simmer for 10-15 minutes on low heat. One they are a desired softness (but not falling apart) remove from liquid with a strainer. KEEP the sauce after – it is great for dipping.
  • You can prepare the tacos in 2 ways:
    • You can take each tortilla and add mozzarella cheese, mushrooms, chopped onions, and cilantro and dip in leftover sauce (after mushrooms are removed).
    • In a hot sauce pan,  add a spoonful of the sauce spread thinly and then add tortilla on top. The pan should be heated to medium. Then add cheese so it can melt – then mushrooms, onions, and cilantro. Once you see the tortilla bubbling – fold in half and remove from heat. Be careful when flipping and and removing from heat. The corn tortilla is wet from the sauce and may break. 
  • Cook eat one – or if your pan is large enough for 2 at a time until all tortillas are gone.
  • Spoon broth into small bowl and enjoy tacos while dipping. 
Blend Ingredients

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