Taco Salad

Taco Salad

How to make Taco Salad

If you do it right, Taco Salad can be amazing.  It’s one of my wife’s all time favorites.  And she got really excited, when she heard me say that this was going to be my next video recipe post, because this salad has got it all.  I’m talking about, not only, a great selection of salad ingredients but an array of toppings that really make this recipe pop.  And it’s the combination of those ingredients that really make a great Taco Salad.

Taco Salad

4 Major Taco Salad Ingredients

Unless you want to buy some of these pre-made ingredients, you’re going to need 3 other recipes and it doesn’t matter if you already have your favorite go to recipes or if you want to use mine.  Either way, it is essential that you have a nice and thick Chili No Beans, a good Guacamole and of course homemade fresh Salsa. I would highly recommend making all of these, beforehand, yourself because let’s face it, store bought Guacamole, Salsa and Chili, never really measure up.  But settling for canned ingredients isn’t the worst thing in the world and if that’s the way you decide to go, your salad will still turn out out pretty good.  But I would highly recommend going the extra mile on this one and make everything fresh.

The fourth major ingredient, in my opinion, is of course optional but I think is very necessary; Sour Cream.  No all you need is your favorite greens and chopped vegetables to make a salad and you’ll be well on your way.

Taco Salad Ingredients:

1 head Iceberg Lettuce, chopped or torn
1 Red Onion, sliced
4-6 Sweet Peppers, chopped
1 can Black Olives
1 Cucumber
8 oz Cherry Tomatoes
1 can Red Beans

2 cans Chili No Beans, RECIPE
1 pint Guacamole, RECIPE
8 oz Salsa, RECIPE
1 pint Sour Cream
1 lbs Cheddar Cheese

To make this Taco Salad, just follow the instructions in the video tutorial.

 

Mac and Cheese with Shrimp

Mac and Cheese

The Best Mac and Cheese has Shrimp

I love this Mac and Cheese recipe and I’m not one to ever order Macaroni and Cheese at any restaurant, either.  Not because I don’t like it.  I just don’t think that most restaurants, especially the major chains, make a quality dish.  So I put together a Cheese Sauce that has a real nice balance of flavor and adding shrimp helps bring out a nice seafood stock kind of taste.  Lobster would be a fantastic alternative, if you’d like to step it up, but you don’t have to add any seafood to this dish at all if you’re not into shell fish.  The other ingredients, listed down below, make one of the best Mac ‘N Cheese sauces on the planet.

Mac and Cheese

My Mac and Cheese Secret

Most Mac and Cheese recipes use Milk, Flour and Cheddar Cheese but I don’t use any of those and I’ll tell you why.  Milk makes the sauce thin.  That’s why the flour is needed and I think it makes the sauce taste bland and chalky.  The Cheddar Cheese keeps it simple, whether you use sharp, medium or mild.  Simple may be fine in some kitchens and if that’s all you’ve got, by all means, use it but keeping it simple means it tastes simple.  I know that some recipes are great when they’re simple.  But if you’re able to trick it up a bit by adding a variety of different cheese, why not control the outcome with perfect balance for your specific tastes.  That’s why I use Colby Jack, Mozzarella and Parmesan Cheese.

Mac and Cheese with Shrimp Ingredients:

8 oz Pasta, cooked
1 1/2 doz Shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tbsp butter
1 Garlic Clove, chopped
1 1/2 cup Half & Half
1 tsp Bouillon, Tomato/Chicken or Beef
1 tsp Oregano, dried
1/4 tsp Nutmeg
1 cup Colby Jack cheese
1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese
Salt and Pepper to taste

Optional Ingredients
1 Green Onion, chopped
2 tbsp Fresh Parsley, chopped
3 Bacon Strips, cooked

Watch and follow the Mac and Cheese with Shrimp Video Tutorial for specific directions about making this recipe.

Pork Gyro – Greek Tacos with Pita Bread

Pork Gyro

The Best Pork Gyro

I have found that the best Pork Gyro is made by Greek’s in sub sandwich style shops with fresh toppings and thinly sliced marinated meat cooking in a rotisserie.  Now all you need is some fresh baked Pita Bread, some Tzatziki Sauce and you’re good to go.  And that’s exactly what I aim to provide you hear in this recipe.  A great Greek marinade that will enhance the natural flavor of the pork or lamb, if you prefer, and the best way I know how to make this professional sandwich in the comfort of your own home that will taste like you’re in the heart of the motherland itself, guaranteed.

Pork Gyro

Pork Gyro Marinade

The Greek flavor in a great Pork Gyro is going to derive from the marinade and this marinade can be used with lamb as well.  But any roast is only as good as the seasoning it’s paired with.  So you’ve got to break the ingredients down and realize what gives it its originality and its authentic flavor.  I have found that the secret lies in the white wine vinegar and the juice that comes from the grating of a sweet red onion.  This secret is known to not only the Greeks but to the Persians as well.  Then spicing it up with some freshly chopped garlic, a few herbs and some salt and pepper, takes it the rest of the way.

Pork Gyro

Pork Gyro Meat Cooked in a Rotisserie

This Pork Gyro recipe does not have to be cooked in a Rotisserie, but I find that it really mimics the style you will find in any great Gyros Restaurant because the meat can be sliced off around the outside and served as it continues cooking towards the middle.  So it makes it fun for small parties and barbecues even though you aren’t technically grilling, I don’t think anyone will complain because these are amazing.  Plus you’re going to want to learn how to make the Greeks secret sauce called, Tzatziki Sauce.  This recipe is not only good with Gyros but a variety of other cooked meats, seafood or used as a dip for vegetables and baked goods like Pita Chips, Bagels and Large Pretzels or Pretzels Bites.

Pork Gyro Ingredients:

2 lbs Pork Roast, shoulder or butt thinly sliced
Pita Bread

Pork Gyro Marinade
1 Red Onion, grated
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1/3 cup Olive Oil
1/2 cup White Wine Vinegar
1 tbsp Rosemary
1 tbsp Oregano
1 tbsp Smoked Paprika
1 tsp honey (optional)
Kosher Salt and Pepper to taste

Toppings
Red Onion, chopped
Tomatoes, sliced
Baby Spinach
Click Here for Tzatziki Sauce Recipe

Be sure to follow the instructions in the Pork Gyro video recipe tutorial.