If you’re reading this blog, there’s a good chance I haven’t met you. There’s an even bigger chance I probably love you. And I don’t just mean that I like you because you read my blog. That’s a given. I mean that I’d find something wonderful and unique about you to latch on to, even if your voice is obnoxiously loud or you’re not-so-secretly addicted to playing dress-up or you have a third nipple. I consider myself blessed to have a far-from-perfect family, and a great number of people who have given me the chance to love and accept regardless of how they came came into this world.
There’s really only one kind of person I can’t get along with. And I guarantee you’re not one of them. You wouldn’t be reading this if you were. I’m talking about the people who think anything besides meatloaf and mashed potatoes is “weird.” You know, that one friend who you hesitate to invite over because it means you’ll have to make plain roasted chicken (off the bone, naturally) instead of the Moroccan tagine you’re dreaming off. Or the brother who will only eat rice pilaf from a box, and wouldn’t dare touch the pear and blue cheese risotto you’re dying to try.
Well, I confess that I don’t actually have these people in my life. Because I make it a point to avoid them. I once dated a guy for about six weeks. In that time we went out for dinner roughly five times, three times at Chili’s and twice at Applebees. Each time his order was the same: a plain chicken sandwich. As my mouth watered for things like Thai food and sushi, I knew right away this wasn’t going to work, unless I dined alone for the rest of my life. Buh-bye.
I realize that this makes me sound completely void of any compassion and understanding whatsoever, which is the opposite of what I tried to tell you in the beginning. So the truth is that I actually feel bad for these people. I’m sad for them that they won’t bother to try figs, dates, or blueberry-vanilla goat cheese because those things aren’t “normal.” (Yes, I know this woman; no, she’s not my friend.) It’s a shame that they have no idea what they’re missing, just like the restaurant who declined to put these Tandoori Chicken Tacos on their menu. Yes, I submitted this taco idea to a local establishment for their Taco Tuesday competition, and no, they didn’t pick it.
Bastards. Poor trendy tapas place with your Taco Tuesdays, you could have had a really great thing.
I’ll tell you just what they’re missing, so you can be sure not to fall into that trap. I’ve already divulged to you the deeply sweet and spicy mango-habanero salsa, its intensity achieved by roasting the fruit and vegetables. And last week I gushed about this mouth-watering tandoori grilled chicken. Marinated in yogurt, cilantro, ginger, and other spices, it’s incredibly tender and bursting with fresh flavor. Well, it turns out that they’re even better together, when piled on top of a grilled tortilla slathered with garam-masala spiced chickpea puree and crunchy red cabbage. If you can’t imagine the word “taco” without “Old el Paso” or “Bell”, you’ll probably think this is “weird” no matter how hard I try to convince you otherwise. But for me, the only weird sensation was wondering how I managed to go so long without these.
I can’t even begin to think about what plain chicken sandwich boy would do if I put this in front of him. Fortunately, I don’t have to. Instead, I’m married to a guy who’s insisting we eat these tacos weekly (and I’ll happily oblige) and pondering how many that silly place would have sold, had they put them on the menu. He’s quite positive that number would be a lot.
Tandoori Chicken Tacos
2 pieces of chicken breast from Tandoori Chicken recipe, warmed and thinly sliced
3/4 cup drained, rinsed chickpeas*
1 clove of garlic
1/2 teaspoon garam masala
1-2 tablespoons water
2 cups shredded red cabbage
1/2 cup Roasted Mango-Habanero Salsa
4 small reduced-carb tortillas, such as Trader Joe’s
chopped fresh cilantro
Preheat grill to medium-low heat.
Puree the chickpeas with the garlic, garam masala, and water until smooth.
Spray both sides of the tortillas with cooking spray. Arrange the tortillas on the grill and cook for about 2 minutes, until lightly browned. Flip the torillas and continue grilling for another few minutes, until browned and slightly crisp, but still flexible.
Spread each tortilla with some of the spiced chickpea puree. Top each one with some of the cabbage, sliced chicken, mango salsa, and cilantro. Serve warm.
*For best results, remove the “skin” from the chickpeas by pinching each one between your thumb and forefinger
Servings Per Recipe: 2
Amount Per Serving
Cholesterol: 83.1 mg
Sodium: 751.0 mg
Total Carbs: 56.0 g
Dietary Fiber: 14.5 g
Protein: 48.4 g