Not long ago, Diane, of indianeskitchen.com featured a recipe for “Taco Baked Potatoes”, on her very fine blog, https://indianeskitchen.com So, I thought I would share how I prepared my version of her very nice recipe. I say “my” version because I used somewhat different ingredients than she did, and I prepared it a little bit differently than she did. Here is a link to her original recipe https://indianeskitchen.com/2017/11/09/taco-baked-potato/ So, on to my version of the recipe…
Taco Baked Potatoes
- 6 small red potatoes
- 1 1/2 cups gardein the ultimate beefless ground
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 1/2 Tbsps taco seasoning mix
- 2 oz. shredded Mexican mix cheese
- 1 sliced fresh green onion sprig
- 2 Tbsps sour cream
- 1 smallish tomato, chopped
- 1 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- Wash and cut out the “eyes” and bad bits from the potatoes and then pierce each potato at least to the middle. Then place the potatoes on a microwave safe plate and cook them on High for 10 minutes or until when stabbed with a fork they are determined to be tender all the way through. Set aside
- Place the 1 1/2 cups of the gardein the ultimate beefless ground, in a frying pan on medium heat.
- Mix the taco seasoning into the 1/2 cup water and then pour that over the “beefless” ground in the frying pan. Simmer that mixture for at least four minutes or until the mixture is less soupy looking or reduced somewhat. You don’t want the mixture dripping wet when you spoon it over the cooked potatoes. It took about 10 minutes to reduce the mixture.
- Slice the top half of the cooked potatoes lengthwise and then crosswise part way through. Then squeeze the potatoes open with your clean fingers and fluff the innards with a fork and leave the potato skin as intact as you can, it will help hold everything together.
- Spoon the reduced taco “meatless” mixture, at least 2 good tablespoons per serving, over the fluffed potatoes.
- Top with at least 2 tablespoons of the cheese per serving. The heat from the “meatless” taco mixture and the potato should melt the cheese. If more melty-ness is wanted, place the taco-fied potatoes, on a microwave safe plate and place in the microwave and warm on a low setting just long enough to melt the cheese. A piece of waxed paper draped over the plate will help protect your microwave from splatters.
- Add a good dollop of the sour cream and a goodly amount of the diced tomato – at least 2 tablespoons worth. Then sprinkle the green onion slices on top. Serve and enjoy!
- Options for added toppings: several slices of fresh avocado, chopped black olives, several spoons of cooked pinto beans or black beans, a spoonful or 2 of cooked corn kernels, a shake or two of dried cilantro or a small amount of fresh chopped cilantro leaves, dried or fresh parsley…pretty much whatever your favorite taco toppings happen to be, you can use to top these taco potatoes.
Here are some more of the prep pictures:Here are the potatoes, above, washed, the bad bits and “eyes” cut out, and pierced and ready for the microwave.Here, above, is what the “meatless” ground looks like straight out of the bag.Here, above, is what the “meatless” ground looks like after the taco seasoning, the water and the one tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil have been mixed in.Here, above, are three of the cooked small red potatoes, squeezed open with the “meatless” taco mixture spooned on top. Here, above, is how it looks with the cheese and sour cream dollop.And here, above, is the whole shebang, some of the chopped tomatoes, some of the sliced green onions and as an optional topper, some sliced black olives. My husband sprinkled some of the dried cilantro and some dried parsley flakes on top and then proceeded to wolf it all down! The amounts of ingredients I used were enough to make three good servings, as in a serving is three of the small potatoes as the base for the fixings. My husband had these for two nights and then I put the third serving worth of the taco mixture into a freezer bag and froze it for another day. On the yummy meter of from 1 to 5, with 1 being so-so, and 5 being WOW!, my husband, the official taste tester, says these “Taco Potatoes”, are a triple 5, as in WOW!, WOW!, WOW!!!!! He really likes them and wants me to add them to our regular lineup of meals that I make for him.
And now for the product review: For the Taco Potato recipe I prepared, instead of ground beef, I used “gardein, the ultimate beefless ground”. This is a soy based ground beef alternative, as in no animal had to die for these taco potatoes. You can use this product in many of the dishes you would use crumbled hamburger in, as a healthy and cruelty-free alternative to meat. My husband thinks this product actually tastes better than hamburger and that is really saying something coming from a life long carnivore. Here, above, is the nutrition info…And here, above, is what the back of the bag looks like. My husband actually asked me to add this review to this post so people could see that there is an alternative to using hamburger for making this recipe for the taco potatoes and some other recipes which call for hamburger meat. Pizza would taste good with this product, I think. He says this “meatless” ground is so good that he would even eat it warmed up straight, just by itself! So, my husband gives this “gardein the ultimate beefless ground” a 10! That would be as in, on a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being the least liked and 10 being the most liked. So, we will be using this product on a regular basis!
Now for the second recipe…During this past March, in between four visits to the dentist to get my teeth cleaned, have a cracked tooth fixed and be fitted for a new bite-guard,( I had chewed the old one to pieces), I caught a bad cold. My husband had it first, so of course then I caught it. ourlittleredhouseblog very kindly posted a Simple Salsa recipe in my comments, for me to try, that is healthy and full of vitamins and all kinds of goodness to help bust cold germs. So, as many Mexican restaurants serve salsa with meals, I thought I would include the Simple Salsa recipe to go along with the Taco Potatoes. And it really is a simple and easy to fix recipe…
- 1 can whole peeled tomatoes, diced, I didn’t have that so I used a whole fresh tomato and what was left of the tomato I didn’t use for the taco potatoes
- 1 bundle of green onions, chopped, I ended up using four sprigs of the onions cause I was making a small amount of the salsa.
- 1 small can of tomato sauce
- 1 bundle of fresh cilantro, chopped, I used 1 teaspoon of dried cilantro and then my husband added a little more to adjust the salsa to get it to taste the way he wanted it to.
- Optional: Dried Parsley to taste, Pink Salt to taste, Fresh Cracked Black Pepper to taste. 1 yellow pepper and 1 jalapeno pepper, both chopped and boiled slightly to soften.
Directions: Mix all the main ingredients and your choice of the optional ingredients in a medium size bowl, I used a two-cup size glass measuring cup, until well mixed. Serve with tortilla chips and enjoy! It will last about a week stored in the fridge. I had a bag of tortilla chips to show with the salsa but my husband ate them before I could get a picture taken. So, he really likes this Simple Salsa and rates it a 5 on the yummy meter, where 1 is so-so, and 5 is WOW!!!! And that is my fault, not the fault of the recipe. I made the salsa without the peppers, and he thinks he would have rated the salsa higher if it had a little bit a kick to it. So, we are still experimenting to see what pepper varieties give a little bit of a kick but don’t set his head on fire. And he really liked that I didn’t chop the tomatoes and green onions up hyper small, he likes salsa that is chunky. So, we are still experimenting with this Simple Salsa to get it to the just right level of chunky but not too hot. And here is a link to:
Check out her blog, she makes all kinds of really neat projects! Plus, she is SUPER NICE!!!!
So, there you go! Two recipes and a product review! The Taco Potatoes are very easy to fix and don’t take very long at all to prepare. Even a young person with some parental supervision for cutting the potatoes and slicing the tomatoes and green onions, could prepare this recipe! It’s not hard at all! And the Simple Salsa really is easy to fix! Have a GREAT DAY!!!! and HAPPY COOKING!!!!!