July 25, 2007


A sandwich by any other name just might be a taco. As with pita, you can put almost anything inside a taco shell, and contrast is the key. This is a yin-yang thing: hot-mild, fat-lean, smooth-crunchy, raw-cooked. Like structural anthropology but tastier. SAM

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, finely chopped (1/2 cup)
1 tablespoon chili powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 pound ground beef
2 cloves garlic, pressed
Hot-pepper sauce to taste
Salt and black pepper to taste
12 taco shells
1/2 head iceberg lettuce, shredded
2 medium tomatoes, peeled and diced
1 cup sour cream
1 cup guacamole
1/4 pound Cheddar cheese, shredded (1 cup)

In a heavy skillet over medium heat, sauté the onion in the oil until tender, about 10 minutes. Add the chili powder and cumin and sauté until fragrant, about 3 minutes. Add the beef, garlic, hot-pepper sauce, salt, and pepper. Cook, stirring, until the beef browns. Drain and divide among the taco shells. Top with lettuce, tomatoes, sour cream, guacamole, and cheese.
Makes 12 tacos.