No matter how deeply embedded I become in the gourmet food world, how many uni paninis or quail egg and truffle pizzas I eat, or how many times I read Pollan, Schlosser, or Kingsolver, there are some things that I will never give up. One example is boxed mac and cheese. Something about that powdered orange cheese calls me back every time. Is it food? ehh, not really. Is it delicious? YES. Another one is Taco Bell. I really love taco bell. It is a true guilty pleasure of mine. I mean, yea we all get a taco from the drive thru at 3:30 in the morning here and there, but I actually like Taco Bell so much that I eat it sober. They recently came out with a cheesy crunchy burrito. I love the cheesy crunchy gordita, so I knew I was in for a treat with this new buritto. I tried it, but I actually didn't like it that much. For the crunch they use fritos, which I have always thought taste kinda funny. My friend John is a fellow Taco Bell addict (he is less in the closet about it than I am) so I decided to remake this burrito at his house and improve a few things.
So of course, more research was in order, so I got another one of these guys. Here is what it looked like, compared to what the ad for it looks like.
Instead of fritos, I baked some soft corn tortillas until they were nice and crispy/crunchy.
First I coated them in some oil and lots of spice. This was the same spice blend I used on the taco meat: Lots of cumin and chipotle, bit of ancho and oregano, and a tiny amount of coriander, clove and cinnamon.
All the strips are coated and ready for the oven.
I placed these right on the rack with foil down below so they would fold a bit before they got crunchy.
Yum! A nice snack as is, but save some for the burritos!
Same ingredients as the Taco bell one;sour cream, beef, cheese, rice, and crunchies. I also added a little lettuce.
So good! I think mine looks more like the picture than theirs does! I may or may not have slid in that last tortilla after cutting it, but don't tell anyone!
The main point of the post is the tortillas, I just dipped them in the spiced oil and baked at around 350 until they were very crunchy. Hanging them on the racks is key. The spice blend was a lot of cumin and chipotle, some ancho and oregano, and a very small amount of clove, cinnamon, and coriander. Don't worry about measuring! have fun with it. I made a bunch of the spice and only put a little into the oil for the chips. The rest I sprinkled on the meat after cooking it with some onions and garlic. Tasty! It's been awhile since I talked taco meat with you guys, and my method and recipe has changed a bit, so I might revisit that soon.
So now that I have bared my soul to you guys and told you my deepest secret guilty pleasure, what's yours?