Crispy Potato Rajas Tacos
- Potato Rajas:
- 3 medium Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut in 1/2-inch dice
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 2 medium onions, halved and cut in 1/4-inch slices lengthwise
- Salt, to taste
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
- 4 medium red bell peppers, roasted, peeled, seeded, and julienned
- 4 medium poblano chiles, roasted, peeled, seeded, and julienned
- 1 cup heavy cream
- 3/4 cup grated Mexican manchego or Monterey Jack cheese
- 2/3 cup grated Cotija cheese
- 1/3 cup grated panela cheese
- Vegetable oil, for frying
- 12 small corn tortillas
- Chipotle Crema (see recipe), for serving
- Border Guacamole (see recipe), for serving
- Corn Relish (see recipe), for serving
- Chipotle Crema:
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1/4 to 1/2 chipotle en adobo, to taste, finely minced into a paste
- 1/4 lime, juiced
- Salt, to taste
- Border Guacamole:
- 5 ripe California avocados, preferably Hass, halved, seeded, and peeled
- 6 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
- 1 medium red onion, diced
- 4 jalapeno chiles, stemmed, seeded, and finely diced
- 3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- Corn Relish:
- 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 4 cups fresh corn kernels (about 5 ears)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1 large red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and cut into 1/4-inch dice
- 4 poblano chiles, roasted, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/4-inch dice
- 4 scallions, white and light green parts, thinly sliced on the diagonal
- 1/2 cup red wine vinegar
For the potato rajas: Bring a medium saucepan of salted water to a boil and cook potatoes until just tender, about 6 to 8 minutes, being careful not to overcook. Drain, pat dry, and spread in a single layer on a tray to cool.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute onions with salt and pepper until they begin to brown, about 10 minutes. Stir in red bell peppers and chiles. Pour in heavy cream, bring to a boil, and reduce to a simmer. Cook 4 minutes or until cream begins to thicken. Add grated cheeses and potatoes and cook, stirring occasionally, until just heated through. Remove from heat.
For the tacos: Heat vegetable oil to 350 degrees F in a large, deep pot or deep fryer. Dip tortillas briefly, one at a time, into the hot oil, just to soften. Spoon potato rajas mixture into center of each softened tortilla. Fold in half to enclose mixture and secure with a toothpick threaded through the top edge of the tortilla. Deep fry tacos for 3 to 5 minutes, until crispy and lightly golden. Remove and drain thoroughly.
To serve, spoon Chipotle Crema onto four serving plates, spreading a bit to create a bed for the tacos. Place Crispy Potato Rajas Tacos on top of crema. Finish by topping with generous spoonfuls of Border Guacamole and Corn Relish and serve immediately.
Cook's Note: Fresh chiles can be roasted over a gas flame or under the broiler. Keep turning so skin is evenly charred, without burning the flesh. Transfer charred chiles to a closed plastic bag and steam 10 to 15 minutes. Pull off charred skin by hand and dip briefly in water to remove blackened bits. Once peeled, cut away stems, seeds, and veins.Chipotle Crema:
Combine ingredients thoroughly in a small mixing bowl. Taste and adjust seasonings as necessary. Chill until ready to use.Border Guacamole:
Cut the avocados into quarters and place in a mixing bowl. Mash with a potato masher or fork until chunky. Add the remaining ingredients and combine with a fork. Serve immediately. Makes 3 cups, or 6 appetizer servings.Corn Relish:
Heat 1/2 cup of the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute the corn with the salt and pepper, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a large mixing bowl and set aside to cool.
Add diced peppers to the sauteed corn along with the scallions, red wine vinegar, and remaining 1/4 cup olive oil. Mix well and let sit 20 to 30 minutes to blend the flavors. Serve at room temperature. Makes about 5 cups.
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