Summer is winding down. And what better way to end it than with some good ole tacos using some of the summer’s freshest produce. And also last of the juiciest, ripest mangoes!
What I love about tacos is how versatile, how adaptable, they are. Fill them up with anything; beef, chicken, fish, or just some fresh vegetables, they’d always be delicious.
And they are so fun to put together. Arrange all of your fillings and the taco shells in one place. Get the whole family round the table. And let everyone customize their own taco! Fill your taco up, finish it off with a good dollop of salsa and a squeeze of lemon juice and then dig in!
Salsa: I used store-bought salsa, the kind that comes in a jar, Mitchell’s to be exact. It tastes good and is super affordable. But you can use homemade, obviously.
Taco Shells: Ok guys. I know a lot of you will be like we don’t have taco shells, we can’t make these… Yes you can! Trust me, I wouldn’t have made tacos if I hadn’t have seen the bright yellow boxes of Old El Paso taco shells in every supermarket here in Islamabad beckoning me to buy them. And if Islamabad stores have taco shells in stock then I’m guessing all other cities of Pakistan would do too. Things reach here the last. It’s Old El Paso Crunchy Taco Shells that I have used. Use whatever you prefer; soft, hard, crunchy, white flour, whole wheat…
Chicken: Boneless chicken bites coated in a simple batter. Deep fried. Then tossed in a simple sweet and spicy sauce. Or you could simply omit the batter step, and use K&Ns Chicken tender pops instead.
Fillings: I went all out on some of summer’s last finest produce; mangoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, lemons, tomatoes, cilantro, and lettuce. Again use whatever you prefer.
Take your taco shells. Warm them in the oven or the microwave according to the directions on the package.
Now this is how I like to do it; take a warmed taco shell. Spoon on some salsa, then carefully place chicken bits inside. Make sure not to hold or pry open the taco shell too hard, or else it’ll crack. Place in the veggies and the mangoes. Give a squeeze of lemon or lime. Top it all off with some more salsa and it’s done! Serve with sour cream, more mangoes and loads of lemonade!
This recipe makes 6 tacos. Double the recipe, invite some friends over, watch a movie, and have a full on Taco Night.
Popcorn Chicken Tacos
Yields: 6 tacos
6 taco shells
2 boneless chicken breasts, sliced in small cubes
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper powder
1 teaspoon mustard powder
1 teaspoon paprika
½ cup flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup milk, or as needed
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
Self-raising flour for coating1
Oil for deep frying
2 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 teaspoon ginger garlic paste
½ teaspoon crushed cumin
½ teaspoon salt, or to taste
½ teaspoon red chili flakes
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 Tablespoon ketchup
2 Tablespoon chili garlic sauce
1 Tablespoon lemon juice
Bell peppers, sliced
Salad leaves, shredded
Fresh coriander, chopped
Marinate the chicken in salt, black pepper, mustard powder, and paprika. Leave covered for 15 to 30 minutes.
In a bowl, whisk together the flour, salt, egg, oil, and the milk. Dip the marinated chicken into the batter and then roll in the self-raising flour. Deep fry till golden brown.
For the sauce: fry the ginger garlic paste in the oil till its golden brown. Add the rest of the sauce ingredients. Toss in the chicken. Mix till it’s coated well.
Warm taco shells according to the packaged directions.
Fill each taco with the salsa, chicken, and the fresh vegetables and mangoes. Top with more salsa, and a squeeze of lemon juice.
1. 1 cup Self-raising flour= 1 cup flour + 1 ½ teaspoon baking powder
2. You can add or omit whatever you like. Add peaches, lime juice, berries, iceberg lettuce…whatever your heart desires.