Celebrate St. Isidore with this farm fresh taco recipe


By Scott Alessi, Monitor Managing Editor

In many Spanish-speaking countries, today marks a big festival on the Catholic calendar – the celebration of the Feast of St. Isidore the Farmer.

The Spanish saint, who died on this date in 1130, is the patron to laborers, and specifically to farmers, who is celebrated in him home country as well as in Mexico, Peru, Chile and the Philippines, to name a few.

To celebrate Isidore, here’s a Mexican-themed meal that uses farm fresh ingredients and is fairly easy to whip up, meaning you can honor the patron of laborers without putting in a lot of work.

Tacos with radish and avocado salsa

The simple yet delicious salsa requires only four basic ingredients: radishes, avocado, cilantro and a lime.

Start with a bunch of fresh radishes and dice them into small pieces. Then peel your avocado and slice into chunks that are roughly the same size as your radishes. Place both in a large bowl and add 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro and 2 teaspoons of fresh lime juice and stir together gently. Cover the bowl and place in the refrigerator to chill.

Next up is your taco filling. For this recipe I prefer to use ground beef or even ground turkey, but you can just as easily use steak, chicken or any other meat.

If using ground beef or turkey, add the meat to a frying pan and brown. While cooking, stir in 1 teaspoon of ground cumin (be careful not to add too much, as less is more with this spice). I also enjoy finely dicing up some of the remaining cilantro that didn’t go into the salsa and stirring that in with the ground meat for added flavor. Perhaps with the intercession of St. Isidore, some of the cilantro I’ve planted this spring will yield plenty to include in this and other recipes.

While this is cooking, you can warm soft corn or flour tortillas in the oven, wrapped in foil, for five minutes.

From here, all you need to do is add the meat and salsa to your warm tortillas and you’re done! These tacos taste great and are a refreshing (and healthier) alternative to tacos flavored with heavy doses of cheese or sour cream, and the combination of crunchy radish and soft avocado gives them a great texture. And if you’re counting carbs, you can also leave out the tortillas and just enjoy the salsa and meat as a salad (although in this case, I’d suggest steak or chicken instead of ground meat).

Regardless of how you customize the dish, it is sure to be a great addition to any fiesta!

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