Achiote Rubbed Squash Tacos


Achiote Rubbed Squash Tacos

The sweet earthy butternut squash is balanced as the gourd is seasoned with slightly sour achiote chili paste. When rolled into a taco, the squash is enhanced with charred poblano pepper, panella cheese, hot sauce and a squeeze of lime. This recipe comes to us from Michael Natkin of Herbivoracious.

Serves 8

For the squash poblano filling:

  • 1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1/2″ thick slabs
  • 2 ounces achiote paste*
  • 3 poblano peppers
  • ½ bunch cilantro, chopped
  • nonfat sour cream, to taste
  • 1 ½ teaspoons salt

To complete the tacos:

  • 32 soft corn tortillas
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • 2 limes, cut into wedges
  • 1/4 pound panella cheese, or other soft, mild cheese
  • ½ bunch cilantro, chopped
  • Hot sauce, to taste

*a seasoning paste commonly used in Mexican cooking that is made from anchiote chili seeds, orange juice and other spices. Found in the specialty or ethnic foods section of most grocery stores, or if time allows try making your own.

To make the squash poblano pepper filling:

Mix the achiote paste with a small amount of hot water. Working in the sink, use your hands to break up the paste until it thoroughly dissolved. Rub it on all sides of the butternut squash slabs and set aside.

Prepare a grill for direct high heat. Place the poblano peppers on the grill and char them, rotating every 4-5 minutes or until they are black on all sides. Remove from the grill and put them in a covered bowl for 10 minutes so that they rest in their own steam.

Reduce the heat of the grill by adjusting the gas or grilling the squash using only the side area. Put squash slices over medium-low heat and cook both sides for about 3 minutes per side, or until thoroughly tender.

When peppers have steamed for 10 minutes, remove from the covered bowl. Peel and seed the poblanos and cut into small dice.

Toss the squash and poblanos along with a 1 ½ teaspoons salt. Taste and adjust seasoning to taste. Place in a bowl and top with a dab of sour cream and some chopped cilantro.

To complete the tacos:

Wrap the tortillas in a moistened towel and microwave for 90 seconds to soften.

Bring squash poblano pepper filling, red onion, lime wedges, panella cheese, cilantro and hot sauce to the table. For most structurally sound results wrap squash filling, onion and cheese in two soft tortillas per taco. Season taco with cilantro, hot sauce and a squeeze of lime.

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Nutrition Information

Achiote Rubbed Squash Tacos

Servings per Recipe: 8

Amount per Serving

Calories:  363

Calories from Fat:  62

Total Fat:  7g

Saturated Fat:  2.7g

Cholesterol:  9mg

Sodium:  337mg

Potassium:  1029mg

Carbohydrates:  70.2g

Dietary Fiber:  12g

Protein:  11.2g

Sugars:  5.2g

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