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Taco Tuesday Or, Any Day

Taco Tuesday

Taco fans rejoice: It’s officially Taco Tuesday. Vida Taco Bar’s executive chef Josh Brown has a seasonal creation that’s warm, comforting and full of flavor.

Oh, and it’s entirely plant-based — spicy jerk tempeh tacos. Brown, who became a vegetarian two years ago, says he wanted to create a dish that carnivore and vegetable lovers both can enjoy.

“I hate going out to restaurants where there isn’t really a vegetarian option. It’s usually just the chef who’s mixing a bunch of sides together, and it’s not really thought out,” he says. “So I wanted to make sure that we had items on the menu that could hit everyone’s palette.”

The tacos are substantially filling, he says, with the perfect combination of spiciness and coolness from the marinade and pineapple salsa.

“It’s a jerk recipe but not a Jamaican style, more of an Ethiopian style. It’s got nutmeg and allspice flavors, but then it does have heat from the habanero and jalapeno,” Brown says. “You will also get a little something sweet with the pineapple, which adds a nice flavor overall.”

And if you needed an excuse to pair your tacos with your favorite spirit, Brown suggests you try their signature margarita, made in house. This zesty concoction is made with lime, orange and lemon juices, El Jimador and organic agave.

Jerk Tempeh Taco
Vida Taco Bar (Serves 4-5 people)

Pickled Red Onions

  • 2 red onions, sliced
  • 1 habanero, sliced
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 2 cups lemon juice
    >> Mix all ingredients and marinate for 24 hours.

Jerk Marinade

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 jalapeños, seeded and ribbed, minced
  • 1 tablespoon allspice
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 4 scallions, trimmed and chopped
  • 1/3 cup fresh lime juice
  • ½ cup red wine vinegar

 

Pineapple salsa

  • 1 small pineapple, diced
  • 3 small red onions diced
  • 3 small red peppers, diced
  • 3 small green peppers, diced
  • 3 bunches scallions, sliced
  • 6 jalapeños, minced
  • 2 bunches cilantro, chopped
  • ¼ fresh lime juice
    >> Mix all ingredients thoroughly. Store in cooler until ready for use.

Tacos

  • 2 ounces jerk marinated tempeh
  • 1 tablespoon pineapple salsa
  • ½ tablespoon pickled red onions
  • ½ tablespoon queso fresco
  • ½ tablespoon jerk sauce
  • Micro cilantro

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