These were the tacos I grew up eating – my grandma would make them at least two to three times a month. These crispy corn shells are not from a box. They are made with soft corn tortillas formed into half-moon shapes, then lightly fried until crunchy but somewhat pliable.
The filling is called picadillo and is simple to make and economical, made with ground beef, potatoes, tomatoes, and seasoned with a bit of Lawry’s Garlic Salt.
The tacos are then garnished with traditional toppings such as iceberg lettuce, tomatoes, and your favorite salsa. My job as a child was to shred the cheese for the tacos and we always used Colby cheese, which for some Mexican purist might look down upon “yellow cheese”. Feel free to use the cheese of your choice. But for me, the flavor of Colby or Longhorn is mild and creamy making it my favorite choice for these tacos. This recipe is down-home Mexican cooking at its finest.
Prep Time: 15 mins | Total Time: 30 | Serves 10
1 tablespoon olive oil
1⁄2 cup chopped white onion
2 pounds ground beef
1 tablespoon Lawry’s Garlic Salt
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
4 tomatoes, chopped
1 large russet potato, peeled and finely chopped
Vegetable oil, for frying
20 corn tortillas
Shredded iceberg lettuce
Pico de gallo or salsa of choice
Shredded Colby or Longhorn cheese
Chopped avocado (optional)
1. In a large skillet heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook for about 2 minutes, until translucent.
2. Add ground beef and brown. Using a potato masher, mash meat so you have small pieces of meat with no big chunks. Drain off excess grease.
3. Add garlic salt, pepper, tomatoes, and potatoes and cook over low heat for about 15 minutes, until potatoes are done. Salt to taste.
1. Heat 1-inch oil in a heavy-bottomed skillet.
2. Fry tortillas, one at a time, by folding in half and laying one half flat in oil while holding other half with a fork or tongs, and repeating with the other half to form a half moon shell, until golden and crisp, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Place taco shells on a paper towel lined plate. Repeat with remaining tortillas.
3. Spoon picadillo into each taco shell, and garnish with lettuce, tomato, salsa, cheese, and avocado if using.