I dated my brother for a year.
It’s not as bad as it seems.
See, the year my mother allowed me to date, she just so happened to require that my brother, Jermaine (we call him Maine), ride along on every…single…date.
Lots of first dates that year.
She was a clever, clever woman.
But I was so thrilled to be able to officially “date” that I don’t even think I noticed.
“Your brother needs a ride.”
“Oh, he’s going to the dance, too?”
“Oh, your brother is cool.” (insert side-eye and shade–though those terms didn’t exist in 1993.)
By the second year, I was able to get in a boy’s car and ride off…without Maine in tow.
On my truly first date, my not-quite-yet boyfriend took me to Taco Bell.
Where he joyfully announced to me that I could get whatever I wanted.
Enter soapbox: Fathers: this is why you must take your daughters out…to nice places…and extremely NICE places…and normal places, so she is never ever ever evah delighted by the boy who takes her to Taco Bell and says…get whatever you want. Your presence in her life and your expression of love for your baby girl is vital for her self worth. Exit soapbox.
Starving, I said, “I’ll take one taco.”
Now, y’all know how small those tacos are at Taco Bell. Were they smaller back in the 90’s? I don’t know. I know I could have easily eaten five or six.
My date looked perplexed. “All you want is one taco?”
“Ok,” I continued, “Two.”
He ordered six tacos. And he ate them all.
It’s been a million years since I’ve eaten at Taco Bell, but I do enjoy tacos quite regularly. I mix up the fillings, but my Millet and Black Bean Tacos are my children’s favorite. When I start getting all gourmet with the fillings, they remind me that their palates are not.
Keep it simple, momma. Keep it simple.
Make the taco seasoning recipe below in bulk. Tweak the amounts. If you don’t like heat, cut the cayenne by half. You like a little more grounding? Add a touch of allspice…or nutmeg. Play with your spices.
Your kitchen. Your tacos. Your magic.
Millet and Black Bean Tacos with Avocado and Roasted Poblano Relish
- 2 TBSP dark chili powder
- 2 TBSP dried oregano
- 2 TBSP cumin
- 2 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 3/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/2 tsp cayenne
- 1/4 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 tsp black pepper
Millet and Black Bean Taco Filling
- 3 cups cooked millet (cooked millet according to package instructions. No instructions? Boil 3 cups of water with a pinch of salt and add 1 1/2 cups of millet…reduce heat and cover…cook for 15-17 minutes until tender)
- 3 cups cooked black beans
- 1/2 cup-1 cup red or yellow onion, diced
- 1 TBSP coconut oil
- 1/4 cup Taco Seasoning
- 1-1 1/2 cups of water
Directions for filling:
- In a large skillet, heat up your coconut oil. Add your diced onion, millet and black beans, and stir.
- Add your taco seasoning and water and stir, cooking over low-medium heat for 7-8 minutes until completely warmed through.
Avocado-Roasted Poblano Relish
- 1 large Florida avocado, diced
- 1 poblano, roasted and diced
- 2 garlic cloves, minced
- 1/2 cup cilantro, leaf and stem
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 TBSP lemon juice or vinegar
- 1 TBSP olive oil
- To roast your poblano: Set the flame on your stove top to high, and place the poblano directly to the grate above the flame. Allow the skin to char completely all over. Place the charred poblano in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap for 15 minutes. After the 15 minutes are up, peel the charred skin away with your fingers and dice the pepper.
- Mix the all the ingredients of the Avocado-Roasted Poblano Relish together in a bowl and set aside.
Do I really need to explain how to cook a corn tortilla shell? I mean, no judgment if you don’t know. If you are 10-years old, and you don’t know. See that shade? Alas, in a skillet of your choice, heat up an oil of choice (I typically use coconut oil or grape seed oil…use whatever you like. Or go the low-fat way and sprinkle your corn tortillas with water and place in the oven at 325 degrees until pliable…or be all bourgeoisie and use a lettuce leaf.
Cook your shells…or not…fill and top with the relish and whatever else you like in your taco. Enjoy!
Til next time…Reine.