Like many ideas for new recipes, I find inspiration for them while travelling and eating out. This particular recipe came to me through our travels in America, West Coast in particular LA and Seattle. We visited two great places called Gracias Madre and No Bones. They make amazing tortillas and tacos, full of flavour and bursting with colour.
I started experimenting with different combinations a few months ago and made this lentil and cauliflower taco one and Michael and I both knew I had to share the recipe. It’s beyond simple and easy to whip up even when you stick with quick and easy meal ideas. Can be made for lunch, dinner or snack. Best eaten straight away if you’re using hard taco shells as they will go soggy otherwise.
You can make so many different variations of a meal like this. I would start with a hero vegetable, which in this case is the cauliflower. You can add some beans or legumes, which in is the brown lentils in this recipe and then top with some fresh vegetables, like avocado, peppers, tomato, cucumber, coriander (cilantro), parsley and any vegan sauces you can think of that work with the combination of vegetables and grains, pulses etc.
It’s also a fun way to get kids involved in putting filling in their own taco. They can try different flavour combinations and pick out their favourite. You can easily get the whole family to help out!
Here’s a quick and easy 3 ingredient recipe for a homemade soft tortilla if you prefer them over a hard shell one.
- Half a medium cauliflower head (weight around 1.2 lbs or 500-600g), cut into little florets
- 1-2 tbsp cooking oil (I use rice brand oil)
- 400g can of brown lentils (don't drain water)
- ¼ cup ketchup
- 1 tbsp garlic powder
- Pinch of cayenne pepper or more if desired
- Salt to taste
- 6-8 hard or soft taco shells
- Handful of coriander (cilantro) roughly chopped
- Half an avocado, cut into thin strips
- 2-3 tbs vegan mayonnaise
- Add all the cauliflower to a medium heated skillet/fry pan with no oil. Cook for a few minutes tossing to release natural flavours.
- Add the oil and fry for another couple of minutes.
- Once the cauliflower has browned a little, pour in the lentils and the water they are in a mix.
- Add in the ketchup, garlic powder, cayenne pepper and salt to taste and mix in well. Let it cook for around 10 minutes until some of the liquid has evaporated and the cauliflower is nice and soft.
- Take a taco shell and place around two tablespoons of the lentil and cauliflower mixture inside.
- Top with strips of avocado, coriander and mayonnaise - I like to do mine with a stripe. You can just dap it on top as well.
- I would recommend you do one taco at a time when you finish eating each one as they can get soggy down the bottom and the ingredients can fall through. It's a fun way to eat with the family building your own tacos at the dinner table!