Thursday, March 1, 2012

NAVAJO TACOS - A SW Taste Treat - Recipes Attached

Yesterday I pulled out a new/old recipe that I had begged off a guy at a picnic years ago, and then had never made.  A batch of chili that will knock your socks off!  As I had it cooking in the Crock Pot all day, I decided that the perfect way to serve it last night would be over Indian Frybread, as Navajo Tacos, as I'm still in that SW travel mode.

According to Navajo tradition, frybread (or fry bread) was created using flour, powdered milk, salt and lard given by the United States government when the Navajo Native Americans were relocated to Bosque Redondo, New Mexico from Arizona 144 years ago (see previous post on Hubbell Trading Post).

Navajo (or Indian) Tacos, are made using frybread instead of tortillas, and are basically open-faced tacos. Commonly served at pow-wows, festivals, and other Native American gatherings, they are making their way into more and more venues these days.  Too good not to share so, in the tradition of handing down recipes, I pass along two pretty great ones, with lots of SW flair!


Large Crock Pot
½ - 1 lb. Ground Beef
2) Pork Chops
2) 15 oz.cans Chili Beans in Natural Juice (if you can’t find these, use the ones in Chili Gravy/Sauce, and rinse them off)
1) 15 oz. can Red Kidney Beans in Natural Juice
1) 7 oz. can Ortega Diced Green Chilies
1) 4 oz. can Ortega Diced Jalapenos (you will only use a small portion)
1) 30 oz. can Whole Plum Tomatoes
Medium onion, diced (amount to taste)
3) cloves garlic – minced
3 Tbsp. Olive Oil
2 – 3 Tbsp. Chili Powder
¼ - ½ tsp. Cayenne Pepper
½ tsp. Ground Black Pepper
½ tsp. Salt
¼ tsp. Cilantro
1 - 2 cans Beer (I used one 24 oz. “Tall Boy” can of Coors ~ pure “Rocky Mountain Spring Water”.  The brand is up to you…you will need enough to make it the consistency you want)


Brown Ground Beef and add to Crock Pot.

Brown Pork Chops.  Cut into small pieces and add to Crock Pot.

In skillet, heat Olive Oil – add minced garlic and diced onions, and sauté until glazed.  Add to Crock Pot.

Drain the Chili and Kidney Beans - add to Crock Pot.

Drain Tomatoes.  Cut into small chunks - add to Crock Pot.

Add can of Diced Green Chilies.

From the can of Jalapenos (DO NOT ADD THE WHOLE THING!), spoon out what you think the equivalent of 1 or 2 chopped peppers would be, remembering that whole Jalapenos are small and potent.  Add to Crock Pot.

Add your remaining spices to Crock, and stir thoroughly.  Add enough beer to bring to consistency you desire – drink the rest.  Cover, and turn your Crock to low for 5-8 hours.


3 C. Flour
1-1/2 tsp. Salt
1 Tbsp. Baking Powder
¼ C. Instant Non-Fat Dry Milk
1-1/3 to 1-1/2 C. lukewarm water – you want to use enough to make a “ragged” dough
Oil, or shortening, for frying.

Combine flour, salt, baking powder, and dry milk in bowl.  Add water and stir ingredients together.  Turn dough out onto lightly floured surface and knead about 2 minutes.  Pinch off ball of dough, about the size of a large egg or a little bigger.  Roll into ball shape.
On floured surface, roll dough into circles, until about ¼” or thinner (thicker than a tortilla, though).  When it’s the size you want, poke a hole in the very center with your fingertip.  This will help it stay flatter during frying.

Heat oil in heavy skillet – about 1/2” worth, or so - pretty hot (Med. High…it shouldn’t take that long to cook on each side, but not hot enough to burn).  Fry dough circles on each side until just starting to turn golden.  Drain on paper towels.  Makes 8-10 pieces.

(or how to throw it all together)

Layer fry bread, with chili on top.  Top chili with your choice of toppings…cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, onions, to name a few...I was rather tame with toppings for my photo, and it should have been plated ala Bobby Flay (heavy sigh!), I know.  Be more creative than I.

The extra frybread you may have left over is delicious with honey, and your morning coffee, the next day...a flatter version of the beloved Sopapillas from the SW.


Jackie said...

Oh holy smokes! I want to make that right now!! Yumm-O!!

Colleen Mcgraw said...

yes please....I'll take the honey and flat bread. The tacos look great, how do you think it would be with ground turkey?

Bead and Needle said...

Probably just as fabulous!

Dorthe said...

It looks SOOO delicious, I love the look of the Chilli, and can almost feel it burn :)
Thankyou for the recipi,dear -I wish you a happy week-end at home.
HUGS, Dorthe

oldgreymare said...

You did not ring the dinner bell loud enough or I would have been there! : (

Carole said...

I copied the flat bread recipe and will definitely make that.
Gosh better get home....George is making homemade ricotta cheese. So good and so easy.


Colleen said...

Looks soooooooo good!

Colleen said...

Looks sooooooo good!

The Primitive Bucket said...

Okay YUM!!! Will you adopt me??? Looks wonderful!!! You can cook, clean, sew and and and.. I true treasure!!!

Love you sis!!

Jillayne said...

mmmm - looks so yummy! Chili is one of my favourites and this looks like a great recipe. the fry bread looks wonderful too - and food like this doesn't need fancy plating at all!

Hopewell Creek Designs said...

Oh my goodness I have wanted to make Indian Frybread for a long time. This looks delish!! I will be making this for sure. I may also post this on my blog if you don't mind with a link back to you on this. It is too good not to share=)

Jackie said...

ok I have to say, I made this chili and the fry bread today! My husband loved it!!! Said it was way better then my handed down chili recipe!! The fry bread was a major hit as well, I had never made or heard of it before but wow, fabulous stuff!! Thanks Tanya!!

vicki said...

Oh my goodness- the chili recipe loold fabulous-- I'm saving that recipe for sure. We encountered fry bread everywhere we went on our trip out west last summer-- interesting stuff.

Another great post!