tacos

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We have been seriously spoiled here in Dorchester over the past year! I recently wrote about a new favorite, The Industry on Adams, and we’re also loving Molinari’s, Lower Mills Tavern, Lucy’s and a bunch of others, all within walking distance of our house. I still actually can’t believe, despite the plumber issues, the luck we had finding a house we love in a location that is booming.

Right after we returned from Italy a few weeks ago, Yellow Door Taqueria opened up in our very own Lower Mills neighborhood. We had been stalking its opening, peering over papered windows on walks around town, and getting ready for a funky new spot for tacos and tequila. . . it’s worth saying though that we have another taco favorite, Sea Breeze nearby on the Ashmont side of us, which is excellent and totally different. One doesn’t replace the other. . . I caved into a serious Sea Breeze craving last night!

Anyway, back to Yellow Door. . .

Yellow Door Taqueria

The taqueria is an absolutely beautiful spot that was once an antique store that is now down the street. The design is chic and fun and comfortable; the bar is a likely winter hangout for us.

Yellow Door Taqueria cocktail menu

A creative cocktail menu with a focus on tequila made for good reading material as we cozied into our corner table. We’re bar people, but at 5:30, the bar was already full. We were lucky to snag the last table. My strategy going forward, when possible, is to be waiting by the door at 4:00 when they open!

It was a warm day, and I always crave grapefruit, so I went with the Paloma which ended up being completely delicious and fresh and perfectly made.

We took our time ordering food. It’s become our new way of dining that we have a cocktail first, then start to order, so the food doesn’t come piling out.

Yellow Door Taqueria Dorchester

paloma cocktail

I am a huge fan of ceviche and am so excited that Yellow Door features three options. I could easily just make a meal of ceviche on its own, but we were there for the tacos, so we went with the scallop ceviche to start before putting in our taco order.

I love that sweet, super fresh scallop flavor when scallop ceviche is done perfectly, and this was it. Delicate flavors of habanero, lime, tequila, all came together for flavor without overwhelming the seafood. Sturdy chips were perfect for scooping!

scallop ceviche

The taco menu was really hard to put down. We decided we wanted everything but the duck and in the end went with Veggie, Chicken Tinga, Carnitas, Cangrejo (Crab), Azteca, and, as lovers of fish tacos, the Daily Fish. I’ve included the descriptions from the menu below, because these aren’t your ordinary tacos. Each has the perfect accompaniments to go with the meat or fish or veggie that is the main feature.

Everything was SO delicious. The only issue was that, after the ceviche, we definitely did not need six tacos. We forced ourselves to eat every bite because these were incredible and couldn’t go to waste, but I definitely rolled out of there.

Our entire experience at Yellow Door Taqueria was excellent, and considering we went on their third day of being open, that’s pretty amazing. From the warm welcome to the well-paced service, it felt like they had everything down already, and I can’t wait to be back to eat and drink the rest of the menu.

Welcome to Dorchester, Yellow Door Taqueria!

Yellow Door Taqueria

 

CARNITAS (GF) pork confit, cotija, salsa verde, refried beans, red onion, cilantro, chicharrones 4.

DAILY FISH chili-infused Tecate-battered fried local fish, calabaza purée, crema, grilled pineapple salsa, cilantro 5.

AZTECA tequila-habanero braised beef, salsa ranchero, onion bacon jam, pickled red onion, crispy tortilla strings 5.

CANGREJO (GF) local crab a la plancha, blue corn purée, chipotle beans, mango pickled serrano slaw, red onion 5

CHICKEN TINGA tinga braised chicken, crema, avocado frito, crispy chicken skin, radish, cilantro 4.

VEGGIE (GF) chipotle potato purée, beets, queso de cabra, carrot fresno salsa, house guacamole, tortilla strips, cilantro 4

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Tags: Boston blogger, cocktails, Dorchester, Lower Mills, tacos, tequila

Happy Memorial Day! I hope you are all having a wonderful long weekend. Mine’s been pretty amazing so far.

The tough thing about summer weekends is, the more fun they are, the less we tend to get done. Suddenly grocery shopping and other chores just seem like a waste of precious time, and the rest of the week ends up a bit more stressful.

That’s why I am doing my best to create really easy meals with healthy ingredients that we can put together in just a few minutes. Welcome, salmon burger tacos.

These salmon burgers from Trader Joe’s are great on a bun with some tartar sauce or dill yogurt, but last week I discovered they make a great, if not traditional taco.

Salmon Burgers

I pan-cooked them in a non-stick skillet until done. These burgers are pretty substantial and all salmon, making them a perfect healthy protein choice.

Once the burgers were done, the sky was the limit. I wrapped ours in Archer Farms whole wheat tortillas. I love the Archer Farms brand, these tortillas are some of the softest and best-tasting I have ever purchased. I layered in guacamole, pre-made by Wholly Guacamole, and topped with shredded romaine lettuce and Archer Farms salsa. Not bad for a meal consisting of pre-made ingredients.

Archer Farms Salsa

I’m trying to avoid grocery shopping today by going through our cabinets to see what I can make, at least until tomorrow, with what we already have. I’d like to start making at least one farmers market part of my weekly rotation and mixing in some of the grains and whole wheat pasta we already have.

What’s your favorite quick and easy summer recipe or meal?

 

If you live in Boston, you may not know that The Shops at Prudential Center has a farmers market – it’s actually year-round and just moved outside.

Vendors include:
Butter Cafe – baked goods
John Crow Farm – grass fed meat
Swiss Bakers – sandwiches, Swiss pastries
When Pigs Fly – artisan and gourmet breads
Cook’s Farm – pies, maple products
Fastachi – gourmet nuts
The Herb Lyceum – herb plants, herbal products, vegetables
Sal’s Gourmet Chips – flavored potato chips
Saluna Garden Farm – flowers and herbs
Still River Winery – iced apple wine
MacArthur Farm – vegetables and fruit

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Tags: easy meals, fish, Food, healthy, salmon, tacos

Tempeh Tacos

It’s going to be a scorcher today, Boston! Cooking might be the last thing on your minds on this freakishly warm March day. I appreciate warmth and a mild winter, but mid-to-high 80’s in March is worrisome even to me. More importantly, we have wine traveling from California, and I am crossing my fingers the crazy temps don’t spoil it.

As you know, I celebrated the big 32 on Tuesday, and dinner was so great I thought I would share. Since we were in Sonoma and Napa so recently, I decided I wanted a quiet birthday evening at home. After lots of loving messages from friends and family and gorgeous flowers from my family and my husband and a loooong work day, I kicked off my birthday celebration with a bubble bath and a glass of bubbly.

flowers

I was able to relax because I had started dinner the night before. I cubed a giant block of tempeh to start. After this meal, I realize I prefer tempeh to tofu for a vegetarian protein; I like the chewiness, and does it soak up sauce!

Raw tempeh looks a little like brains, unfortunately.

tempeh

I chose to marinate my tempeh in this Ortega taco sauce. When we were little and my dad would travel for work,  we often had tacos for dinner because my dad didn’t like them.  This taco sauce brings back fond memories of these dinners. And it’s tasty.

taco sauce

Marinated overnight, the tempeh basically took on the flavor of the taco sauce which made it a fabulous filling for our tacos.

marinated tempeh

When it was time to start our build-your-own-taco bar, I sautéed the tempeh on low in a frying pan while I prepped our toppings.

They included grated cheddar and chopped romaine,

cheese and lettuce

I also brought out some of my homemade habanero salsa which is to-die-for and makes my forehead sweat, guacamole,  2% Fage yogurt, and of course warmed whole wheat tortillas. We each built out own tacos, starting the tempeh, piling them high with deliciousness.

tempeh tacos

We ate on the floor with the windows open and bubbly in our glasses and followed our tacos with some desserts that my husband brought from Flour. It was a nice picnic dinner.

Warm weather definitely brings out the desire for quick foods that don’t take a ton of heat to prepare. The tempeh was the only part of these tacos that required turning on a burner, and that was only for about 10 minutes so it didn’t heat the house much. Tonight we’re having giant salads with fried eggs and trying to stay cool with a walk at Castle Island. What a week!

Have you done anything summery this week?

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Tags: dinner, Food, recipe, salsa, tacos, tempeh, Vegetarian

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