Taco night is THE BEST. It’s one of my go-to ‘clear-the-fridge’ meals. Get some veg in there, cook up any kind of beans or lentils and a quick salsa or dressing.
This lovely combo of turmeric-roasted cauliflower and simple refried beans is from Sonja and Alex’s (of A Couple Cooks) new cookbook, Pretty Simple Cooking*. It’s a beautiful book packed full of everyday vegetarian recipes (perfect for my uni meal planning!). When I was on their podcast last year, we realised how closely our food philosophies aligned (i.e. no faddy diets, no ‘quick fix’ crap. Just delicious, vibrant FOOD!) – so if you’re into that vibe, definitely check out their new cookbook (and mine* 😉 ) for some accessibly healthy recipes.
Back to tacos – their original recipe included a chipotle aioli but since chipotles in adobo are v difficult to find in the UK, I subbed my favourite smoky paprika yogurt to drizzle on instead! And look, I know the ingredients list looks long on here but it’s mostly spices & pantry basics, so these are truly very simple to prepare.
- 1 large head cauliflower , about 2 pounds
- 4 cloves garlic
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 tablespoons refined olive oil
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
FOR THE BEANS
- 1 small white onion
- 1 15- oz (400g) cans black beans
- 1 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
FOR THE PAPRIKA YOGURT
- 4 tbsp plain yogurt
- 1 small clove garlic
- pinch salt
- 1 tsp smoked paprika
FOR THE TACOS
- 8 small tortillas
- 1 large handful cilantro (coriander)
- 1 lime
- 4 tbsp roasted salted pepitas (pumpkin seeds)
For the cauliflower:
- Preheat the oven to 450°F.
- Peel and mince the garlic & place into a small bowl with the chilli flakes, olive oil, cumin, paprika, turmeric, kosher salt, and black pepper.
- Chop the cauliflower into florets. Place in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle with the spiced oil and toss to coat with your hands. Roast for 25 to 35 minutes until it is tender and browned, stirring once. Serve immediately.
For the beans:
- Peel and halve the onion, then thinly slice it into half-moon shapes. Drain the beans, reserving 1/4 cup of the can liquid.
- In a medium saucepan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté until translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the beans, reserved can liquid, kosher salt, chili powder, and black pepper. Turn the heat to medium low and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring often and smashing the beans toward the end of the cook time, until most of the liquid has cooked out and the texture is mashed and thick. Scrape the bottom and sides of the pan as necessary. Taste and season with additional salt as desired.
Char the tortillas:
- Turn on a gas burner to medium heat and place the tortilla directly on the grate. After about 15 seconds when the edges are lightly charred, use tongs to flip the tortilla and heat on the opposite side until lightly charred. Repeat for all tortillas, taking care that they do not catch fire.
- Place a layer of refried black beans in a tortilla, then top with roasted cauliflower. Add pumpkin seeds, torn cilantro leaves, a squeeze of lime, radishes, and a drizzle of chipotle aïoli.
- For a vegan version, sub vegan mayo (or even non-dairy coconut yogurt) for the yogurt and thin the mixture out a little with a squeeze of lime juice