Monday, February 8, 2016

Chipotle Jackfruit Tacos

These jackfruit tacos were a huge hit with my teenage sons, who merely tolerate vegan dishes. Even the pickiest one ate three of them and said he actually enjoyed them,which was a first. Both sons eat meat when they aren't at my house and finding meat substitutes they like is a challenge. Neither one are fans of beans or legumes, so making healthy, vegan dishes can be a struggle when they're home. Jackfruit was a big hit for both of them, thought. I had never cooked with it before but had seen multiple recipes for BBQ jackfruit, a vegan version of pulled pork. I was in the mood for mexican, though, and decided to attempt some type of spicy taco. Here's what I threw together, and it came out amazing!

2 cans of jackfruit, in brine
1 chipotle chili in adobo sauce, with 2 tbsp of sauce
1 10.5 oz can of diced tomatoes
1 tsp ground cumin
2 cloves of garlic
1 1/2 tsp onion powder
1 tbsp lime juice
1 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
4 sprigs of cilantro
1 tsp molasses
salt and pepper to taste

I used a saucier to make this dish. If you don't have one, then a tagine or a deep sided frying pan should work. You want something that has a nice wide base, but higher sides than a frying pan. 

Drain the jackfruit and press slightly with a paper towel to remove as much liquid as possible. Pour into the saucier and use a potato masher or the back of a spoon to smash the fruit into shredded bits. 

Add the remaining ingredients into a blender and puree until smooth. The molasses is added for some depth of flavor as well as to take a bit of the edge off the spiciness, my oldest son is a spice wimp. However, you can alter/eliminate the molasses if you don't need to tone down the heat. 

Pour the sauce over the jackfruit and bring to a simmer. Turn heat to low, cover, and let cook for 2-3 hours, stirring occasionally. The jackfruit should absorb most of the liquid making a thick dish. The image above was taken after 1 hour of cooking. The boys were too hungry when it was ready to let me take another after shot before they ate. They also didn't leave any leftovers.

Once finished, serve with vegan sour cream, guacamole/avocado, or vegan cheese. I prefer mine simple, just a dab or two of sour cream. The boys piled it with cheese as well.