Have a healthier taco salad.

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

Usually taco salad conjures up images of deep-fried tortilla shells laden with questionable ground beef, shredded cheese and gobs of rich sour cream. We thought that this tired version of the taco salad was due for a facelift. For inspiration, we turned to the taqueria-style taco, a simple version of the taco served on corn tortillas with some variation meat or seafood, fresh cilantro, onions, radish and avocado. This salad is chock full of fiber, iron, vitamins and protein. Omitting cheese, dressing and sour cream ups the health ante even more.

Salad ingredients:
Baby spinach
spring greens
3 radishes thinly sliced
cilantro leaves pulled off stems
1 avocado, sliced*
1 pound skirt steak
1 teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon chili powder
kosher salt to taste
fresh black pepper to taste
Limes or lemons

Salsa (Optional):
1 can of diced salt free tomatoes
½ cup cilantro
¼ cup onion
1 teaspoon salt
½ fresh ground pepper
Juice from 1 lime
1 garlic clove chopped
1 jalapeno seeded

For salad:

Combine cumin, garlic powder, chili powder, salt and pepper in a small dish. Rub skirt steak with mixture. Let the steak marinate in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Heat a cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add a drizzle of olive oil. Place steak in skillet. Let it sit for two to three minutes until a nice brown crust develops on one side. Flip the steak. Sear for another two to three minutes. Cover and remove from heat for two to three minutes.

Remove the steak and let it rest. If you cut into it too early, you will lose all of the juices and flavor. After at least five minutes, cut the steak with the grain into ½ in strips. Cut across the grain bite size pieces.

Assemble the salad. Squeeze fresh lime juice over the mix. Add salt and pepper to taste. If you’d like, add some salsa. Enjoy!

For salsa:
Combine ingredients in food processor. Pulse until ingredients are well blended.

*How to slice an avocado
Don’t let this nutrition powerhouse best you. Become a master avocado slicer in a few simple steps.

Slowly slice into the fruit with your knife until you hit the pit. Turn the knife around the pit until you have two halves.

Twist and split the halves apart.

Hit the pit with your knife. Gently rock the blade to make sure you have a good grip on the pit. Turn the knife and the pit should pop right out.

Cut lengthwise slices into the fruit while it is still in the skin. You may want to use a butter knife so you don’t pierce the skin and hurt your hand.

Use a spoon to scoop out the slices.

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