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February 15, 2017

Taco Tuesday at the SLL Test Kitchen

Post by South Lyndale Liqours

There’s nothing better than a homestyle Taco Tuesday to get your week in gear. Pair it with the right beers and homemade taco beef filler and you’re running for the border!

 Here we go.. If you have people over, you should make or buy your favorite salsa to share withe everyone. I

recommend making one; it’s simple and fast. Just toss together cut tomatoes, fresh peppers, cilantro, black beans and corn if you like. Boom!. Salsa. You can even hit your local Mexican market and set tamales out as an appetizer like we did.

El Burrito Mercado is where we do our shopping in St. Paul. I recommend you check out their business.

Taco Tuesday at the SLL test kitchen

Now for the taco meat filler… Here’s my recipe.

  • Ground beef. (we used 3 lbs for 4-5 people)
  • White onion minced. One medium whole or half large.
  • Garlic, fresh. 3-4 cloves
  • Serrano Peppers. 3-4 whole peppers seeded.
  • Two small cans of diced green chiles.
  • Sea Salt and cracked Pepper to taste.
  • Taco seasoning. I used Ortega, you can really use whatever in this.
  • One bottle dark Mexican or other smooth finish beer.


Fire UP a large skillet on the lowest possible heat and place your ground beef into it.

This is the absolute key to a winning taco meat mixture. You need to treat this dish as if it’s an Italian gravy. Low and slow. Start mashing the meat down right away over low heat, not allowing any of the beef to crumble or chunk. I continue to mash mine (or employ someone to do it) with a spatula or slotted spoon until its super fine. This is the science behind great tacos. This part is the most important step.

Taco Tuesday at the SLL test kitchen

Secondly, chop your fresh vegetables. You can add your white onion, garlic and serrano peppers to the mixture once its got a nice light brown color and fine separated texture to it. Also, add your taco seasoning at this point to simmer into the mixture.

Other vegetables you’ll want to have for tacos are iceberg lettuce finely shredded, diced tomatoes and extra white onion for your taco toppings. I also just picked up a mixed Mexican cheese and sour cream to compliment the dish.

Taco Tuesday at the SLL test kitchen

Taco Tuesday at the SLL test kitchen

In the mean time.. we paired a meal with a fragrant Jasmine rice. We use a rice cooker for ease of clean up and guaranteed cooking time, but you can sear your rice in a number of oils and add water to cook with more flavor. The key to great Jasmine on the side, in my opinion, is Cilantro. We pulled some fresh stuff from the garden.

Taco Tuesday at the SLL test kitchen

Mix your rice with fresh cut Cilantro, maybe a bit of your choice of oil and squeeze of fresh lime. Boom!

Taco Tuesday at the SLL test kitchen

NOW, your taco filler has been simmering in it’s goodness for quite some time. It’s time to add your beer to this mixture.  We used Moos Joos, Oatmeal Milk Stout. This is a Local Minnesota beer in Marshall, MN by Brau Brothers. We’re BIG fans of this one!

Taco Tuesday at the SLL test kitchen

Turn up the heat to about medium and let this mixture simmer until it reduces by half. You’ll find this Mexican taco “gravy” to have an elegant, creamy finish with a unique flavor profile, rather than chunky, well-done and greasy.

** Add your canned green chiles right at the end and turn off the heat.

Taco Tuesday at the SLL test kitchen

Now.. there’s many ways to eat tacos. Some people like soft shells, some people like hard shells. Some people don’t like the shell!  I use both – a double decker..

Lay your soft shell taco on your plate. Spread sour cream over the diameter of it. Place your hard shell taco on top of that with your shredded cheese on the bottom of the hard shell. Then layer your meat, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, etc. The cheese will soak up meat run-off and when the hard shell breaks and gets messy, the soft shell and sour cream with keep it all in one nice package 🙂

The last thing we have to do is pair this meal with some fine beverages.

3 Beers made our seelction and they are:

1. Brau Brothers: White Cap Crystal Wit Bier

2. Millstream Brewing Co. German Pilsner

3. Zyweic Beer: Porter

Try these delectables with your next Mexican feast and of course, you can get them all South Lyndale Liquors

Taco Tuesday at the SLL test kitchen


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