I love tacos. And I’m pretty confident I will have made them in every possible way before I die. I could eat a different taco variety daily and never tire of them. And these tacos are my new favorite. I recently discovered the versatility of oyster mushrooms and decided that they would make an excellent filling choice for my next taco venture.
The word taco comes from the Nahuatl (Aztec) word ‘tlahco,’ which means “half or in the middle,” referring to how it is formed. It is believed that the taco originated in Mexican silver mines in the late 19th century. To mine the silver, Miners added gunpowder to paper which was then folded in half and inserted into rocks before detonation. Taco de minero translates into “miner’s tacos.” The tacos then were very different from tacos today. Typically they were made using a soft corn tortilla filled with fish or organ meat. Nowadays, there are dozens and dozens of taco varieties.
I used smoked paprika and ancho chili powder to get a smoky cauliflower taste without pulling out the smoker. I thought the ancho chili powder would pair well with its daddy, the poblano. Made from dried poblano chilies, ancho chili powder is quite different from regular chili powder, usually some form of a dried chili cut with cumin, oregano, and paprika. You could also obtain the same smokiness using chipotle powder, but because it packs some heat, you must cut the ingredient amount by half.
I have included the recipe for my blue corn tortillas. A good tortilla is the only thing I love more than a taco. If you’ve never made them before, fear not. They couldn’t be easier to make! Only two ingredients, the key is good masa flour and to use only enough water to create a dough. I have a tortilla press because I generally always make my tortillas. But you don’t need a press. You only need something heavy to press them with, like a heavy baking dish. I promise once you start making your tortillas, you’ll never return to store-bought again.
As always, tag me and let me know how you like them!
- 12 oz cauliflower, cut into small florets
- 6–8 ounces oyster mushrooms, thinly sliced (I pull mine apart)
- 1 large or two small poblano peppers, thinly sliced
- 1 small sweet onion, thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/4 cup vegetable broth or water
- 1 1/2 tablespoons ancho chili powder
- 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- Pinch of red pepper flakes
- 1/2 teaspoon salt & pepper
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 8 (6-inch) crisp corn tortillas
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro for garnish
- Corn Tortillas
- Vegan cojita cheese (Violife’s feta works too!)
- Green onions, for garnish
- Salsa verde
Preheat oven to 425°F.
In a large mixing bowl, toss the cauliflower with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, chili powder, smoked paprika, cumin, red pepper flakes, and a generous pinch of salt. Spread the cauliflower on a lined baking sheet, and bake for 25 minutes, or until crispy.
- While cauliflower is roasting, warm a large skillet over medium heat and add onion, poblanos, and broth. Sauté until onions and peppers are tender and lightly golden, about 15 minutes. Add the garlic and sauté for 30 seconds, or until the garlic is fragrant.
- Add 1/2 cup salsa verde to mushroom/pepper mix and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes. Remove mixture from the heat and add lime juice. Adjust the seasonings as desired.
- While mushrooms are cooking, warm a comal or skillet over medium-high heat. Cook each tortilla until lightly browned on each side. (To keep warm, cover cooked tortillas with a clean dishcloth)
To build each taco, add mushroom mixture, and top with roasted cauliflower to a tortilla. Garnish with cilantro, salsa verde, green onions, and vegan cojita.
Keywords: Vegan tacos, mushroom tacos