I’ve never really been much of a recipe follower. I kind of glance over a recipe and then just patch together my own version of it. I do this for two reasons.
1. Recipes are sometimes (often) quite stupid. One clove of garlic? When is that EVER enough garlic? Answer: Never.
2. I’m constantly changing my diet so I need to have good adaptation skills. I pretty much never eat carbs but at any given time I might be cutting down on meat, dairy, sugar or salt which means I almost never make a recipe exactly the way you’re supposed to. One of may favourite things to do is add meat to vegan recipes. I’m just a rebel like that.
I assume that most people are like this but that’s not the case at all. I wrote a few weeks ago about some of my favourite things I’ve been doing/eating/buying and I mentioned taco bowls and linked to a post I did on Mexican food a little while ago. There were a few recipes for different versions of taco bowls but the not the exact one I was talking about and I got a lot of messages asking the for the exact taco bowl recipe I’ve been using.
The truth is, there isn’t really a recipe. I just throw stuff together. It’s funny when you get so used to doing something you think the instructions ‘chuck a bunch of healthy bullshit in a bowl’ are substantial enough for people to figure out how to make taco bowls but they are not! So by popular demand, here’s how I make my infamous taco bowls. I’ve also included instructions for making different versions of them for different kinds of eaters.
Standard Smaggle Taco Bowl – Low carb, high fat version
What you need – serves 6
2 bunches of broccoli
800 gms beef mince
2 teaspoons of butter
1 cup shredded cheese
4 tablespoons of sour cream
Taco sauce – I buy the cheap Coles version with the green label and re-use the jars for home made iced almond milk coffees
1 packet of Old El Paso Burrito seasoning – it’s the lowest carb/sugar one you can get
What you do
1. Cut cauliflower and broccoli into small chunks and put in a single layer on a baking tray. Brush lightly with 1 teaspoon of melted butter and bake at 200 degrees celsius for about 20 mins or until the surface starts to brown.
2. In a fry pan, add 1 teaspoon of melted butter. Add mince and fry for about 5 minutes until mince is brown all over. Add burrito seasoning and mix through well and simmer for 2 mins.
3. I usually put out two dinner bowls and four glass lunch containers and evenly divide the meal between them so we have left overs ready to go. Divide cauliflower evening between six vessels and do the same for the mince. Add 1/4 of a sliced avocado to each dinner bowl (wrap and save remaining avocado for the next day), a tablespoon of sour cream, 1/4 cup of shredded cheese and a teaspoon of taco sauce. Enjoy!
4. Once the lunch serves have cooled, pop them in the fridge. Heat in the microwave or oven the next day and add avocado, sour cream, cheese and sauce after you’ve heated it up.
For a low fat version – add beans and rice and skip the sour cream and cheese. You could also use lean beef mince or turkey mince to lower the fat even more.
For a dairy free version – Skip the cheese and sour cream and add dairy free or vegan cheese and cashew cream if you could be bothered making it. You could also bulk it out with rice, beans and corn chips.
For a vegetarian version – Replace mince with Quorn, tofu or just go hard on beans, corn or corn chips. You could also add brown rice.
For a vegan version – Ditch the meat and dairy and go nuts with avocado, rice, beans and vegan corn chips. Speaking of going nuts, you could also add some nuts.
I hope I managed to shed some light on the whole taco bowl debacle. It really is just a bunch of yummy stuff thrown together in a bowl. It’s one of Mr Smaggle’s most favourite dinners and he loves that there’s leftovers every time I make it too.
I do the same thing with Buddha bowls. I start with a base of lightly stir-fried zoodles and broccoli and then just add stuff. It might be avocado and tuna or some left over sausages and an egg. Just whatever I have lying around in the fridge. I also take lots of notes when I eat out. If I have a particularly amazing salad out for lunch, I’ll write down all the ingredients and try to recreate it at home. That’s how taco bowls became a thing in our house. I ordered a Mexican bi bim bap and it was UH-MAZING so I recreated it at home. We now have some variation of a taco bowl at least once a week.