Tenacious Transformation: Shrimp Tacos
Mexican has to be one of my guiltiest pleasures. The cheese, the spices, the carbs... enough said. But, its also a type of food that can elevate those calories and fat to astronomical levels very quickly. You can start with a simple healthy taco but destroy it in seconds by pounding on the cheese, sour cream, etc... the toppings are endless! Enter Tenacious Taste to rescue the day with a better for you taco that still packs tons of flavor and leaves you full and satisfied!
What you'll need:
- 1 lb of medium size shrimp, peeled, de-veined, and tails removed
- 1 small can of corn (or fresh if you prefer)
- Fresh cilantro, chopped
- About 1/4 cup of spring onions chopped
- 1 head of green or red cabbage or butter lettuce
- About 1/3 cup of low fat sour cream
- 1-2 fresh limes
- 2 cups of cooked quinoa
- 1/2 cup of fresh sliced cherry tomatos
- 1/4 cup of plain tomato sauce or strained tomatos
- Shredded colby-jack cheese or Mexican cheese blend, if desired
- 1 package of organic Mexican spice blend (taco or fajita seasoning) OR use the following blend of spices in varying degrees depending on taste (chili powder, garlic powder, salt, pepper, cumin, crushed red pepper, paprika, onion powder, and dried oregano)
- Cooking spray
Recipe: Serves 4 at 1-2 tacos per person
- Heat skillet or grill pan to medium-high heat and grease with cooking spray
- Season shrimp liberally with taco seasoning and place in grill pan or skillet, 1-2 minutes on each side
- Pour cooked rice into a small sauce pan on medium-low heat and add tomato sauce.
- Add about a 1/2 tablespoon of the seasoning to the rice and reduce until rice is thick and somewhat sticky
- Add corn to a saute pan over medium-high heat with cooking spray, season with salt and pepper, and saute until corn begins to char just a little bit
- Remove shrimp from heat and immediately squeeze lime over them
- To prepare taco:
- Take piece of cabbage and spread on a dab of low fat sour cream
- Add a spoonful or so of the stewed spiced rice/quinoa
- Add two to three shrimp, depending on length of cabbage piece
- Sprinkle down corn, tomatoes, onions and cheese (if desired)
- Top off with a squeeze of lime and chopped cilantro
- If you're on the coast try and buy fresh local shrimp! Stay far far FAR away from anything imported from any of the Asian countries. Their regulations are (for a kind way of putting it) very lax and the FDA only inspects a mere 1% of the nearly 1 billion pounds of shrimp imported into the U.S. [see orionmagazine for more details]. If you have to buy frozen as a last resort then that's ok, just make sure they are from the U.S. Be on the look out for an upcoming article about shrimp safety and environmental impact!
- To cut time out, I use a microwavable organic quinoa/rice mix from Seeds of Change, found at most markets that offer organic products. They have several varieties like basmati, plain white, and other whole grain blends. Any will work, just stick to one with mild flavorings.
- I used cabbage in the recipe because that's all that was available at the market that day, however a nice butter lettuce would work also. The cabbage does give it nice flavor and probably holds up the best as far as structure is concerned.