Crispy Avocado Tacos
At the time I became pregnant with my oldest daughter, I was working for Marion Cunningham, a well-respected cookbook author and the proverbial fairy godmother of home cooking. Among the perks of the job was being on the receiving end of the lunches Marion made each day. No matter how busy we were, she would take time to set a proper table and cook a civilized meal, the sort of thing you might expect for Sunday supper: Roast chicken with all the sides, a beef and vegetable stew, meatloaf and mashed potatoes. And there was always dessert, everything from apple pie to warm brownies crowned with vanilla ice cream.
A Not-So-Ordinary Taco
One day, Marion was in the kitchen making what appeared to be rather ordinary tacos. Having grown accustomed to my mid-day feast, I was a little disappointed. But one bite in and I was a convert. There was nothing ordinary about anything Marion cooked, least of all these tacos. A combination of crisp corn tortillas, melted cheese, thick slices of avocado, and crunchy lettuce, they were so good, I found myself going for seconds and then thirds.
Essentials for Crispy Avocado Tacos
These avocado tacos are all about texture. It’s essential to get the tortillas very crisp in an oil-slicked skillet. Next is to add perfectly ripe avocado, followed by crunchy lettuce. This is not the time for arugula and spinach. Marion used iceberg lettuce, of which she was quite fond. I opt for the crunchiest, light green leaves from a head of Romaine. Sharp Cheddar is my cheese of choice, but feel free to substitute a milder version or Monterey Jack. Avocados add “healthy” fats to these tacos and help make them nourishing and satisfying.
What to Serve with These Tacos
To round out a meal of these tacos, I like to add a side or two. Here are a few ideas:
- Make a side of beans, either homemade black or pinto beans, or store-bought.
- Add a plate of crunchy raw vegetables with a squeeze of lime and Tajin or chili powder.
- Make this colorful slaw.
If you like these Crispy Avocado Tacos, you might like:
Crispy Avocado Tacos
- 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
- 4 ounces sharp Cheddar cheese, grated (about 1 1/2 cups)
- 8 corn tortillas
- Favorite salsa, taco sauce, or sriracha
- 2 ripe avocados, sliced
- 8 crunchy, light-green leaves of Romaine
- Lime wedges
Set a large skillet over high heat. Add the olive oil and swirl the pan to coat the bottom. While the pan is heating, sprinkle the cheese over the tortillas, covering the entire surface.
When the pan is hot, lay the tortillas in the pan (as many as can fit without overlapping) and cook until the cheese is melted and the tortillas are crispy and dotted with brown patches. Transfer to a serving platter.
Top the tortillas with 1 to 2 teaspoons of salsa or a drizzle of taco sauce. Divide the avocado slices among the tortillas, laying them across the center. Add a small pinch of salt to the avocado. Tear each Romaine leaf in half and set it on top of the avocado. Fold and serve with lime wedges.