It’s 7 am and you are standing in front of the fridge, feeling underwhelmed about your lunch options. Left overs? Meh; too much gravy. Sam’ich? Meh; too boring. That sad looking prepackaged salad you stock for lunches? Meh; you’re always still hungry after. Cup o’noodles? Eww; icky, bloated, sodium-belly. What you need is something you can make quickly, cheaply, is fairly healthy, and well, good enough to eat on purpose!
Enter the street taco. Traditionally it’s a taco el carbon, which means grilled over an open coal flame, but lots of food trucks and Mexican caterers sell these without the fuss of flame grilling. I’ll show you how to make this (which is really a no-brainer) but in a way that will have you out the door in 10 minutes with a lunch that packs up well, comes together when it’s time to eat so it tastes freshly prepped, and will save you from carrying around sad taste buds all afternoon. You’re welcome.
Chicken Street Tacos
- 1 4-oz frozen, skinless chicken breast. (*Shoe string alert: Frozen chicken breasts are sold in 5-pound bags that you keep in your freezer for 10-15 bucks. You just take out however many breasts you want to use for a meal and you can pop them straight into the oven to bake. Its very economical, convenient, and waste-reducing.)
- 3-5 corn tortillas
- 1 small, white onion
- 1 bunch cilantro
- Salsa (*Don’t be cheap or lazy alert: Make your own salsa in advance, or if you like to buy pre-made salsa, get the good stuff. This is the main garnish and makes a big difference for this meal.)
- Either the night before, or in the morning, pop the chicken breast in the oven and let it bake at 325 degrees for 25 minutes. Use a digital thermometer to check the temp. At 160 degrees Fahrenheit, pull the chicken out and let it rest. Don’t cook to 165 degrees or it will be rubbery and best donated to a clown.
- When the chicken is ready, dice the small onion and chicken. If you have the time, I think shredded chicken tastes a little better, but dicing is traditional and faster.
- Roughly chop or tear some cilantro. I like lots, but go with how much based on what tastes good to you.
- Combine all the ingredients into a tupperware and seal.
- Over an open flame, lightly grill your corn tortillas. I like mine with just a few minor char spots, but don’t over do it. You want the tortilla to stay soft and pliable.
- When your stack of tortillas is done, roll them loosely and pop into a plastic sandwich bag. The steam will keep them soft.
- Put your salsa into a small, separate container, or if you are using a taco sauce, just remember to bring it.
When you are ready to eat, you really don’t need to re-heat anything. Just sprinkle the mixture into each tortilla, add your salsa or sauce, and keep your moans of pleasure down so you don’t get any co-workers asking for sharzies.
~ Nom on