Summer Vegetable Tacos

My summer vegetable cravings for Ripley tomatoes, corn on the cob, zucchini, and purple hull peas got me thinking of ways I could combine these seasonal favorites. My vision coalesced into delicious soft tacos that my guinea pig dinner guests enjoyed on a Friday night.   

The night before making the hummus, I cooked fresh purple hull peas for about an hour in a pot on the stove in vegetable broth with a bay leaf and 2 whole garlic cloves (later discarded). I refrigerated the beans overnight and reserved the cooking liquid – some of which I added to the hummus for added flavor. Canned or rehydrated and cooked black eyed peas can be substituted in this recipe. 

Spread purple hull pea hummus made with roasted jalepeño, cilantro and cumin on a warm soft wheat flour tortilla and layer slices of ripe tomato, fried zucchini chips, smoked corn and crumbled goat cheese. These savory vegetarian tacos pack robust flavor, exhibit chewy and crunchy textures and celebrate fresh summer vegetables. My new favorite taco! 

Summer Vegetable Tacos

  • Servings: 6
  • Time: 1.5 hours
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Print

Ingredients:

  • 2 ears of corn, shucked and cleaned
  • 1 tbsp cherry or mesquite wood chips
  • 1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 jalapeño pepper
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 fresh lemon, juiced
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup tahini (sesame-seed paste)
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 tsp kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 2 cups cooked fresh purple hull peas, drained
  • 5 sprigs cilantro
  • 2 zucchini, sliced (1/8 inch)
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Cracked black pepper
  • 2 ripe Ripley tomatoes, halved through the stem and sliced
  • 12 soft wheat flour tortillas
  • 1/2 cup of crumbled goat cheese (optional to keep it vegan)

Directions:

  1. Shuck ears of corn. Brush kernels with olive oil on all sides. Place in a Camerons smoker on medium heat with cherry or mesquite wood chips for 20 minutes.
  2. Place zucchini slices onto a layer of paper towels on a cookie sheet. Sprinkle each side with salt. Set aside. 
  3. Roast the jalapeño pepper on a skewer over the eye of a gas stove until blacked on all side. Slip into a jar and cover for at least 5 minutes to cool. 
  4. Combine all ingredients from garlic through peas in a food processor. Scrape the blackened peel off the pepper. Slice in half lengthwise and scrape seeds out (wear rubber gloves for safety in this step). Add halved pepper into food processor and pulse mix ingredients until smooth. Set aside. 
  5. Dry zucchini with paper towels. 
  6. Set oven to 200 F. Spread tortillas on cookie sheet overlapping with each other and cover with one sheet of aluminum foil. 
  7. Pour a thin layer of olive oil into a large non-stick skillet heat until oil shimmers and pops a drop of sprinkled water. Fry zucchini slices in batches for 3 minutes on each side or until golden brown.  Remove to platter lined with paper towels. Salt and pepper to taste. 
  8. Slice kernels from each ear of corn and remove to a bowl.  
  9. Remove tortillas from oven. Assemble tacos by spooning hummus evenly on one side of a tortilla and dressing with two halved slices of tomato, several zucchini chips, smoked corn, a sprinkling of crumbled goat cheese and a few sprigs of cilantro. Enjoy. 

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