Episode #7 & Taco Talk T-Shirts!

What a full episode! We made t-shirts, we ate at Josie's in Gardena. LISTEN HERE.

Fun show. Two food remotes and one remote of us making t-shirts. The vote is definitely for BLUE. Please email us your gender and size and we will send you a PAYPAL invoice for $15. Shipping Included! EMAIL :: thetacomaven@gmail.com

PS. Small error on the show by the Taco Maven. I didn't realize Zengo had opened an outpost in Santa Monica because I am never over there as I now live in Pasadena!!!! I should have realized if the LA Magazine was writing about their food that it had to be in LA, but when I googled them, the NYC location came up.

PSS. The Foodie Talk Studio is moving next week and the week after I will be in Mexico City tasting tacos so no LIVE SHOW until Nov. 18th.

Happy Halloween!!!!!


Josie's Place

I'm in love. What a terrific piece of  Los Angeles history. Nothing fancy here. Just a scrumptious homemade chicken taco for under $2 with tax and tip jar.

Totally random that the guy who makes T-Shirt Heat Transfers for me in Gardena would say.... "Hey, you like tacos right? I hear there is a pretty good place down the street".

Their boast of a great chicken taco is legit. It's WAY old-school. The big funky slice of tomato is your first clue.The runny but tasty salsa your second.  I actually like that  they don't over cheese it and the chicken tastes like it was slow roasted by my Grandma.

It's really not THAT far. About 15 min. from downtown LA during non-traffic hours.

Thanks Josie!


El Tauro Taco Truck


GREAT Pastor. Really fun crowd. Really nice people. Getting kinda hungry just thinking about that roasted pork with pineapple on top!


Episode #6 & Pumpkin Pinto Bean Pan Fried Tacos

Happy Halloween! These came out pretty good, live on the show... lots of variations you can do.... I am listing it below as made on the show and I will then list variations etc.


Per taco...

1 white corn Mission Brand tortilla
2 large tablespoons of canned Rosaritos refried beans
4 sprigs of pan browned chives (just toss for 5 min. in a pinch of olive oil)
1 tbl Herdez medium salsa casera (inside taco) salsa as needed outside taco while eating
1 tsp of cilantro paste (from produce section of supermarket) comes in a tube
2 tbl shredded cheese (cheddar/jack mix) by Sorrento
1 tbl of pumpkin pie filling (Libby's) sweeter than the plain stuff pictured...

I used olive oil spray in pan but feel free to use 1 tbl oil to get a nice crunch feel. But spray does brown nicely.

Spread beans, pumpkin, cilantro paste and salsa on one half of the tortilla. Sprinkle on cheese and salsa. Add browned chives - don't chop... use them long - can be bought pre-cut in herb section.

Gently fold in half and brown on each side... about 5 minutes each side... put in oven to keep warm before serving with more salsa and chive garnish...

Of course you could always add fresh jalapeno or onion to this but I would saute first until caramelized. I intended to buy unsweetened pumpkin but couldn't find it. This worked to create a savory taco with a slight hint of sweetness.

I think an all sweet DESSERT taco would be great. I would use Italian cheese, MASCARPONE... 2 TBL of the sweet pumpkin filling. I would add cinnamon and cook the same way. I would drizzle after cooking with a little caramel and top with fresh whipped cream. Ummmm.... YUM!!!!!

Here is a link to a great homemade salsa.....  http://gimmeabiscuit.blogspot.com/search?q=emma

Also as I said on the show, you could be ambitious and make your own fresh pumpkin filling... but the point is for this to be fun and easy and involve almost no cooking!!!!! If you don't want ANY sweetness at all use the completely unsweetened plain pumpkin filling.


Taco Talk Episode #5

What a great episode (aside from ongoing technical challenges). We had another caller and a fabuous antique taco tray giveaway! Russ White from Molly's Landing in Katoosa, Oklahoma! They are a very well-reviewed steak house.


Also 3 taco reviews and some fun chattin' and the battle of the taco trucks festival downtown.




House of Tacos!

Yes that is really their name! AND they have a sign just under it that says "Experts in Taconology".

It's a bold claim, but I believe they have earned the right. The sign also indicates that they have Papusas and other Salvadorian food as well. Are the owner Salvadorian? No. Go figure. But I do feel like some of their signature touches.... saffron on the shrimp and in the rice for one... are definitely NOT Mexican.

My favorite thing here is the ground turkey taco. You can get it hard or soft. NO ONE IN THIS TOWN makes a ground turkey taco. It's beyond awesome just that it exists. They have a ground beef one too, incredible shrimp and all the other usual suspects.

One of the most charming aspects of this place, hidden on Market St. in Inglewood, behind what used to be a KRAGEN AUTO but now it's something I never heard of called  O'REILLY AUTO, is the fact that the guy who takes your order is John from Chicago. He seems to remember every face and exactly how many times you have been there and he couldn't be nicer or more efficient. Yay John! or Juan?

Anyhoo, please watch our humble video and get yourself over there for some tasty taco treats.

Tacos in Woodstock????

My friend is visiting the fabled hamlet. She took this great photo for me, but of course she doesn't like tacos! What? Well... she's Cuban, and she proudly told me once that Cuban Cuisine included neither chips nor tacos. Harumph.

Looks good. Anyone ever been there or tried it?


Jack in the Box! Again!

Ok. Their new logo kinda sucks.It's just a a little too fancy. As does the Gap's (did they hire the facebook guy to do their new one?????) and my bank of forever Union Bank. There must be some kind of graphic arts mediocrity conspiracy going on.

Thank God the Gap saw the light and reverted.

But this post is really about tacos.... Or at least about food!

And sometimes fries. Tonight I just HAD to have those J in the B 2 for 99 cents demons. I don't know why. If I was Catholic I'd go to confession. But tonight I also had to have their curly fries too. That's right, dipped in flour, with savory seasoning and that adorable curl. They are so so so good that McDonald's sugar coated deep-fried quasi-potato sticks pale in comparison. Seriously. You gotta try 'em!!!!!

All told, I was out the door for $3.50. Can you beat that? Can you?



Battle of the Taco Trucks!

Fun event downtown on Sunday in the LA Historic Park - ie I've been to the desert in a park with no shade.... Still... the heat didn't keep me from eating... The undisputed winner was a setup in front of a truck whose name I am really not sure of... It could be Tacos Poblanos. They were making their fresh tortillas on the spot and they were thick, chewy and delicious. I had a chorizo taco that had the perfect reddish color, spice and texture and a decent but not AMAZING pastor. Where was my piece of pina?!?!??!

Then we tried a very large breaded filet fish taco from La Sirena. They win the award for best art on a truck. A cool colorful airbrush of a mermaid. The taco was really good, tasty, cripsy, but odd if you were expecting something more Baja Ensenada style.

Then over to La Golondrina, which is basically a swallow but always stylishly drawn almost in a tatoo art sense where Latin culture is concerned. The gals behind the window were adorably nice and I busted a move and tried their lengua taco. Which I could tell was tasty but ultimately I couldn't take more than one wimpy bite because I could see the tongue-like pebbly texture and I kept thinking of dead cows! OY. But it was suavecita... just like they said. I'm sure their other tacos are great too!!!!

Then I tried a very fungusy looking vegetarian taco. The gal said it was mas o menos vegetarian which was enough to make Side of Rice balk and refuse to eat it. It had a deep burnt red dried chile, onions, maybe some mushrooms and other mysterious spices. It was tasty, but after a bite or two I was done... A little tooooooooo mysterious.

Of course Estrella was there but I know their stuff and they will get their own show at a later date due to their enormous popularity!

I wish they had sold posters of the art they did for the advertisement. I thought it was cool.

Long live the Taco!


Taco Talk Episode #4 - Food Trucks & Beer!!!!!

We had a great experience at the KO Taco truck and we got drunk on the air!


Happy Taco
The Taco Maven


Mexico City Tacos!

I plan to go there in about a month so I will check some of these out!

The KO Taco Truck!

Delightful! I can't remember now where exactly I read about them... maybe on the Roadstoves website? They have only been around since June so I don't feel too bad... and they frequent the beachside of things which is far away from Taco Maven Headquarters in Pasadena.

We decided to bust a move on a Monday night. It was actually cold and rainy after having set a record for heat at 113 degrees just one week before.

The head of the whole enterprise, Chris Goossen, is the real thing. He has a star-studded background which includes working for Marky Mark AND having been the opening chef for Bottega Louie. LOTS of success. He was also a street boxer at one point and comes from a family of boxers, hence the KO (knock out) name and the boxing gloves logo.

What Chris tells us in the video remote review, is that the 10 tacos he serves on the truck were painstakingly culled down from a list of 42 that he was asked to create for another restaurant. It was all done with taste tests amongst brilliant palates and I have to say the result is stunning and absolutely the kind of thing I would drive 40 minutes in the rain to eat!

I'm pretty sure they have the only crispy potato taco available on a truck. It was expertly done, soothing even and most likely meant to accompany the spicier options. Most innovative perhaps was the Albacore Tuna taco which had slices of apples, jicama and habanero salsa. Crispy, chilled, fresh... really delicious. We didn't get a chance to try the Cajun Shrimp taco cuz the grits have bacon and Side 'o Rice is all pescatarian and shite.

Just when we thought it couldn't get any better, Chris busted out some complimentary Poke tacos which featured homemade teriyaki sauce. Again with the teriyaki??? Apparently the guys at The Shore are onto something! You could barely taste it, but it added something special.

Of course KO Taco Truck only uses the freshes ingredients, including homemade elusive tortillas made of yellow maize from a semi-secret source! You can follow them on twitter to get up-to-the-minute locations or check out their website... http://www.kotacotruck.com/

You MUST go.... like... NOW.


My Taco!

Yes. It's really called that. VERY cute little place in Highland Park on York Blvd. near Figueroa. I can't believe my good fortune that I live SO close to it!

J. Gold put them on the map by singing the well-deserved praises of their Borrego. Roasted Lamb that they serve with tortillas and consume even!

I love their potato taco and since that has been our 'theme of the week', I made a little movie of myself eating one. I really like how their filling is reddish... nicely seasoned. Good crunchy shell that is somehow not greasy, nice white shredded cheese. I wish they had a few more salsas, but the ones that they have are fine.

Yum yum crunch crunch!

P.S. They are also famous so their crazy fries. The equivalent of chili fries except it's carne asada on top. I have no interest, but people 'sigh' over them big time.

My Taco Video Click Here



Taco Talk Episode #3 - Pico de Gallo Recipe!

Potato Tacos, Pico de Gallo and other fun bits, plus the SF Taco Fish Bike!  :O)


Pico de Gallo (Beak of the Rooster) Salsa

This classic staple to almost anything you could possibly eat made in Mexico, is one of our favorites here at Taco Talk. Lots of opinions. Lots of predilections. Here is a very easy recipe for you to try at home because the most important thing about this salsa is that it be FRESH as both tomatoes and onions oxidize and spoil VERY quickly.

It has so many meanings.... Could be something you peck at little by little. Something that bites you with it's beak flavor/heat wise. Something hot that shows if you are macho like a rooster etc. Use your imagination and make up your own story involving Roosters!

Makes enough for two - on tacos or as garnish or for a small serving of chips - Double accordingly

1 small jalapeno (use a serrano if you are feeling bold - skinnier but hotter)
1 large clove of garlic (if you don't like raw garlic you can leave this out)
1 large shallot (or use 1/3 of a white onion or a maui onion or a red onion)
generous handful of cilantro - chopped
8 cherry tomatoes or 2 large roma tomatoes or 2 med heirlooms
1 lime (juiced) get a nice ripe soft one... (sometimes I like to use white vinegar instead - 2 tbl.)
1 tsp. of salt
1/2 tsp of pepper
1 tsp. of olive oil (good green stuff - helps salsa last longer and makes it glisten)

Chop all your ingredients finely. Yes, you can 'seed' your tomatoes by cutting in half and scrapping out the runny middle. I like the runny middle but it lasts longer without.

Cut your chile in half and then chop open side down. Scrape away seeds. After you have to wash EVERYTHING really well or you could get chile burn. Cold water and rubbing your fingers along DULL side of stainless steel knife should take care of chile burn, onion/garlic smell etc.

Add the lime juice, oil, salt and pepper etc. Toss together with a spoon and ENJOY.

Salt to taste. I find it needs a lot of salt to bring out flavor but you could always start with less and add as you go.

Please try it and email us the results!