I always try to eat delicious food. Unfortunately I don't have that much money, so I have to cook a lot of it at home. But thats OK because I love cooking and I love eating at home with my wife. This is a website with my favorite recipes and a little bit of commentary.

Saturday, May 12, 2007

Taco Burgers

We were planning on having sloppy joes this weekend but I got to thinking about home and Taco Tico. It is a staple of fine Mexican dining in my hometown.
See all those cars pulling into the parking lot? There is a reason. Taco Tico is pretty good. When I go there I like to get the Tico Dinner with either a sancho or a taco burger on the side. Taco Tico was there long before Taco Bell and will be there a lot longer. It also outlasted the lesser known Taco John's. Another staple of the hometown eating scene is shown in the photo below.
The thing to get there is an All-American burger. They also have excellent omlets, onion rings and some highly recommended fried cheese balls. The best fries in town used to be served at the Tom Thumb on 15th street but it has long been closed. For $2 you could get a large fries which was literally a BOX of fries. Oh so tasty. Since then I have had better fries at Oklahoma Joe's in Kansas City but that is the only place.

Anyway back to Taco Tico. Since I was thinking of home we decided to have the Mexican version of a sloppy joe - the taco burger.

Taco Burgers
1 pound hamburger
1/2 onion, finely diced
2 t chili powder
2 t paprika
2 t cumin
1 t garlic salt
1 t onion salt
1/2 t oregano
salt to taste after cooking

These cooking directions are a little unorthodox but produce great results. Put the pound of hamburger in a cast iron skillet with the rest of the ingredients. Put about an inch of water in the skiller and start frying/braising. Mash the meat up very fine with potato masher. When the onions are cooked continue cooking until most of the water evaporates. This meat should leave an orange stain on the bun or you didn't do something right. Taste the meat and adjust the saltiness as desired. I typically make taco meat this way although I presented a toned down version of what I usually make. I usually include a lot more chili powder, some cayenne and more cumin. I wanted these to be safe for the baby though because she loves sloppy joes.

To serve take a 1/4 cup measuring cup and pack meat into it. Place the meat on the bottom bun. Add a little cheddar cheese, a little lettuce and a little diced tomato. Serve with taco sauce on the side. I like my side sauce to be almost unbearably hot.
To go with your taco burgers I suggest the excellent Sam Peckinpah movie Bring Me the Head of Alfredo Garcia. I have never seen the movie anywhere on TV but I found it on DVD. It is a truly amazing movie set in Mexico starring Warren Oates. A must see.

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