When we escaped to the woods, my goal was to cook for the sake of cooking, to enjoy the process and to revel in slow meals. Since the cabin kitchen was on the smaller side, and since our plan was to sequester ourselves in coziness, I had to be more intentional, more prudent. Each ingredient needed to flow from one meal to the next.
The core of the menu was this Spicy Roasted Chicken & Vegetables, adapted from the cookbook Soul Food Love by Alice Randall and Caroline Randall Williams. The mother-daughter duo returned to their culinary roots, the recipes of their grannies and great grannies, but they updated the recipes to be healthier. My relationship to my own foremothers is very similar. I relish their heartiness and culinary wherewithal and above all, their ability to waste next to nothing.
When it comes to wasting less and making a dent in leftovers, tacos are a simple decoy. Throw everything onto a corn tortilla, top with salsa and cheese, roll, and it will feel like you’re eating anew. No sloppy seconds about it.
The spiciness of the original Roasted Chicken & Vegetables lend themselves to tacos, and when holing away in a rustic cabin with an impressive stone hearth, cooking over an open flame is a must. Potatoes, butter and simple seasonings made for a comforting side dish and added extra roasted flavor to the taco blend- just throw those potatoes all across the plate!
Spicy Roasted Chicken & Vegetable Tacos with Hearth Roasted Potatoes
About this Recipe: There are no hard and fast rules for these tacos. The core idea is to spice up leftovers, wrap them in a corn tortilla, and enjoy! I recommend Greek yogurt instead of sour cream here because it comes in smaller containers and is easier to pack for trips, but I also recommend it for health reasons and flavor. I tend to use a full-fat plain variety.
For the Tacos
leftover Spicy Roasted Chicken
leftover Spicy Roasted Veggies
raw cabbage, sliced
shredded Mexican cheese blend
corn tortillas (oven warmed)
Heat leftover chicken and vegetables with salsa in a saucepan over medium heat. Scoop onto a corn tortilla, and top with raw cabbage, cheese, avocados, cilantro and a dollop of Greek yogurt. Top with a squeeze of lime juice.
Optional: add hearth-roasted potatoes to your taco filling. Recipe below.
Hearth Roasted Potatoes
1-2 potatoes, cubed
1-2 Tablespoons butter (organic/from grass-fed cows)
salt & pepper
Combine potatoes, butter, salt and pepper in foil. Place in the fire, but not directly in the flames. Cook for ~20 minutes, or until desired crispness. Remove from the fire with great care, as foil will be quite hot.
Note: I typically don’t recommend wrapping food in foil for cooking. If you’re in your home kitchen, try a heatproof crock or cast iron pan instead. Here is why I try to avoid aluminum in my cooking/baking.