I beg of you… if there is ANYONE else out there who isn’t long sick of the holiday season once New Year’s Eve comes around, please… e-mail me! I hate feeling like I’m the only one out there who can’t (and even if I could I wouldn’t bother to) work up any amount of energy for the night of December 31st. I don’t want to go to a party, I don’t want to go to a bar, I don’t want to go to Catalina, I don’t want to go to the top of a building with a spectacular view of the city, I don’t want to go to a specially-catered dinner at a local restaurant that includes a bottle of champagne, hats and streamers for the reasonable ticket price of $150 when I can normally go there and order anything for at least $125 less.
I really dislike this holiday… always have. The demand all around me to celebrate it is annoying. When I was younger, I, alongside all my friends, hooted and reveled until the sun came up, but even then I was faking it. The start of a year holds absolutely no significance for me. I don’t care to reflect, or to prioritize ambitions and yet-to-attain goals. The only thing the dawn of the first day of a new year means to me is that I’m going to have to wait longer to use all of the equipment at my gym to make room for all those idiot-resolutioners who crowd the place for the first three weeks of January because this year they’re “really gonna do it!”
Recipe follows. These fuckers are good!
Jalapeño Turkey Tacos with Brussels Sprouts and Carrots
- 10-13 Brussels sprouts, stemmed, washed and sliced thin or shredded
- 1 medium carrot, washed and shredded
- 6 Tablespoons olive oil, separated
- 2 teaspoon kosher salt, separated
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
- 2-3 teaspoons chili powder, depending on how hot you want it
- 1/2 medium onion, diced
- 1 Tablespoon minced garlic
- 1 jalapeno, stems and seeds removed if you want less heat, and diced
- 16 ounces ground turkey
- 1 cup vegetable broth (can substitute water)
- 1-2 cups shredded Mexican cheese
- hot sauces of your choice
- 8-10 small corn or flour tortillas
Heat a skillet with two Tablespoons of olive oil. When hot, dump in all the shredded Brussels sprouts and the shredded carrots. They will reduce pretty quickly, so if your skillet can’t hold it all, do it in batches a few minutes apart. Add 1 teaspoon kosher salt, all the chili powder and the pepper, and coat with another Tablespoon of olive oil (do this as soon as you’ve put the first batch in). Stir regularly with a wooden spoon. Keep the mixture moving until well-reduced and softened. Check the sprouts and see if they’ve browned and softened. If they have, you’re good. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and set aside.
I used the same skillet to prepare the meat. One Tablespoon of olive oil in the pan, and once heated (it was pretty much already there since I’d just finished the vegetables in it), add the minced garlic, and all the diced onion and diced jalapeño. Stir on medium heat until the onions are soft and translucent. Add in the turkey meat and break apart with a wooden spoon. Add a teaspoon of kosher salt. When the meat just begins to turn brown, add the cup of broth or water, and reduce to low. Allow to simmer at least 20 minutes, stirring regularly, until the liquid has been absorbed and the meat is well cooked. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
In a large frying pan, add a Tablespoon of oil and allow the pan to warm. Set in tortillas (I was able to do four at a time), and add generous amounts of the shredded cheese immediately. Add meat and vegetables on top.
Remember you’ll be folding the tortillas in half momentarily so don’t over-stuff them.
Once the tortillas begin to harden slightly, fold them over and allow them to continue to cook. After about 2 minutes (check by gently lifting up the side of the tortilla against the pan to ensure it hasn’t burned), flip them over and allow the other side to cook. I like to move each taco up against the inside rim of my pan with the spatula in one hand, then use a fork in the other hand to gently flip them. Anything that spills out, just let it continue to cook and brown on the pan and collect it all at the end, and top your tacos with them.
You may need a little additional oil, and you may even flip them all again. One side may cook faster than the other, so keep your eyes on them. This part shouldn’t take long, but can easily go south if you’re not careful.
Transfer tacos to a plate lined with a paper towel or paper napkins and allow them to settle for a few minutes, then serve.