Sunday, September 29, 2013

Indian Tacos Recipe


Indian tacos (also known as Navajo tacos or Native American tacos) are a must if you ever visit the Pendleton Round-Up. Of course fry bread (the base of Indian tacos) with some honey or jam is delicious, too. The people who set up stands at Roy Raley park next to the Round-Up grounds have been making fry bread for a long time and their recipes are tried and true.

Naturally, I love fry bread, so I wanted to find a recipe that I liked as much as the fry bread from my home town. There are so many variations of the recipe, and they're all very similar, but sometimes a little tweak here or there can make all the difference in the texture. Isn't baking cool? I found one that's almost as, if not as good as the Round-Up staple.

So first, let's start off with the recipe for the fry bread. I got the recipe from this website and tweaked the amount of salt: 

Ingredients:

  • Oil for frying (around two cups)
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt (the recipe called for 2 TABLESPOONS!!!)
  • 2 1/2 cups warm milk (more or less)
First mix your dry ingredients together in a large bowl. If you have a sifter, sift them. If not, use an egg beater. Warm up your milk (I used a microwave) to a bit hotter than body temperature and stir it into the dry ingredients bit by bit until your dough comes together. If it gets too sticky, add a little flour. Then cover your bowl with a towel and let it rise for about 15 minutes.

While your dough is resting, heat up your oil. You'll know your oil is ready if you splash a little bit of water into it and it sizzles. But don't go too hot or you'll burn your fry bread! If you're not sure, test a small amount of dough. It should brown fairly quickly (about a minute, maybe two). Then adjust the heat as necessary. 

When your dough is finished rising, tear off a small chunk and roll it into a ball and then flatten it out with your hands. It should look something like this:


The size of each piece of dough will depend on how big you want your fry bread to be. When I make Indian tacos, I make them a bit bigger than when I make fry bread just for eating with honey or jam. 
Place your dough pieces gently into your oil. You don't want it to splash back at you! Don't crowd your pan. Put two if they will fit, more if they are small, but try not to overlap each piece. 
With tongs, flip each piece so that both sides are a nice golden brown. When this color is achieved, place the hot fry bread onto a plate or bowl with a paper towel covering the bottom to catch the grease.

If you are making Indian tacos, prepare your taco meat. I used hamburger and those nice cop-out taco seasoning packages you find at the grocery store. I also had these toppings: 

  • diced tomatoes 
  • shredded lettuce
  • chopped onions
  • sour cream
  • taco sauce (we also had salsa) 
  • canned black beans (drained) 
  • shredded cheese 
Once everything is ready to go, top your fry bread with any or all of the taco toppings and enjoy!

The Indian tacos I've had at the Round-Up have some kind of chili instead of seasoned ground beef, but I personally find the seasoned ground beef to be just as good.