I was down the coast a few weeks ago and my friend Carmen whipped up these super yummy tacos. She used quinoa instead of brown rice, and they were so delicious, but I had brown rice in the cupboard at home, hence the change. Making vegetarian dishes seem just as appetising in their own right can sometimes be a challenge, but I definitely think these tacos do the trick. I didn’t even think about the lack of meat when I ate them. The addition of egg, which is used to bind the rice and corn, adds a creaminess and really balances out the filling. Once they’re topped with the salsa and sauerkraut it gives you the zingy, freshness that tacos need and makes these a real crowd pleaser. Bonus: they’re super easy and can be made in about 30 minutes!
Vegetarian Corn, Brown Rice and Chia Tacos with Avocado Salsa and Sauerkraut
2 teaspoons coconut oil
1 small brown onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, diced
Kernels from 1 cob corn
1 cup cooked brown rice
1 tablespoon chia seeds
1 teaspoon chilli flakes
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 avocado, roughly chopped
1 handful coriander leaves
Juice of 1 lime
2 tablespoons green sauerkraut
4 soft corn tacos
Salt and pepper to season
In a medium sized frypan, melt the coconut oil over a medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and corn and cook until the onion and garlic are softened. Next, add the rice, chia seeds and chilli flakes and cook until the rice is warmed through. Then add the eggs until they have evenly coated all the other ingredients (about a minute). Remove from heat.
To make the salsa, put the avocado and lime juice in a bowl and mix together, seasoning with salt and pepper.
Warm the corn tacos and place the egg and rice mix on first, followed by the avocado salsa, finishing with the sauerkraut.
I spotted finger limes in the grocer the other day and I knew I had to make something with them. I tried them recently for the first time and they are the most amazing little citrus delights. They’re a native Australian fruit with a hard shell and once you open it up it reveals these gorgeous little shiny balls, often referred to as lime caviar. Once you bite into the balls they burst into a tangy, limey explosion. You probably won’t find them at your local supermarket but they are getting more and more popular. I found them at my local Norton St Grocer but I’m sure if you asked your local grocer they might have them or would be able to source them for you.
I decided to pair them with a Thai inspired salad with lots of fresh zingy flavours. The flavour base for the dressing comes from grinding down the ginger, garlic and chilli into a paste, which gives the dressing a really good flavour hit. Don’t worry though, I’ve added some coconut milk as well, which tones it down it bit and makes sure the raw ginger and garlic aren’t too much. The addition of the lime juice, vermicelli and fresh herbs really brings the salad to life and while your eating, and bursting through one of the finger limes it really is a taste sensation. And how can you forget the sweet, succulent prawns! This is a perfect summer lunch or light dinner and you can whip it up in under 30 minutes. Enjoy!
Prawn, Coconut, Finger Lime and Vermicelli Salad
1.5 kg cooked prawns, peeled and de-veined
1 small clove garlic
1cm piece ginger, roughly chopped
½ long green chilli
1 small red Birdseye chilli
2tbs lime juice
2tbs fish sauce
1tbs soy sauce
½ tsp sesame oil
2 ½ tbs grated palm sugar (or brown sugar)
2 cucumbers, halved lengthways and chopped
½ cup coconut milk
2 carrots, peeled and cut into thin strips, you can use a vegetable spiraliser
Seeds of two finger limes
200g vermicelli rice noodles
1 cup mint leaves
1 cup coriander leaves
Place the garlic, ginger, and both chillies in a mortar and pestle and grind the ingredients down into a paste. Add the lime juice, fish sauce, soy sauce, sesame oil and sugar and mix until the sugar dissolves. Add the cucumber to the sauce mix and let it marinate for about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, place the noodles in a large bowl and cover with boiling water and then cover the bowl for 5 minutes. Drain the noodles into a colander and rinse with cold water. Set aside.
In a large bowl, mix together the cucumber sauce mix and coconut milk with the noodles, carrots, finger limes and herbs. Divide the noodle salad into bowls, top with the prawns and garnish with some more mint coriander and chilli and serve.