What makes a good taco is its many components. Kind of like assembling a dinner salad, a good taco is all about mixing flavors and textures while using the ingredients that you like best. And tacos are the perfect medium for experimenting with new items. Here are the basic components:
- A quality tortilla - Try making your own. With the right tools, it's rather simple. Or look for a brand of tortillas with few added ingredients. You don't want much more than masa and lime.
- A protein - Beans, pork, fish, beef, turkey, chicken, tofu, you name it.
- Vegetables - While onions and peppers are taco staples, be sure to include a nice crunchy green - especially if using a soft tortilla, chopped tomatoes, corn, squash and more. A homemade salsa incorporates many of your vegetables all in one shot; it also uses tomatoes peppers, and maybe even that zucchini you must have in abundance by now.
- Herbs - What's a taco without cilantro? But, don't stop there. Use what complements your other fillings.
- Creativity - There isn't just one way to put together a taco, and it is certainly not one found on the back of a taco package. Cheese is always great, but go beyond a pre-shredded bag labeled "taco mix." Get to know true cheeses. See what's being produced by a nearby dairy farm. Why not flavor up some reduced fat sour cream? Lime juice would work well.
Use this guide as a reference while you experiment in your kitchen. Have fun and be sure to share your creative taco ideas!