Tomorrow Is National Taco Day! Celebrate With These Make-at-Home Tacos

Chefs Wes Avila of Guerrila Tacos, Elena Irra of Tamales Elena, and Javier Plascencia of Mision 19 in Tijuana share their recipes.

Tomorrow (Friday, October 4) is National Taco Day. (Whoop-dee-doo, I celebrate all year long.) While many will be out drinking margaritas and downing tacos two at a time, why not have your own taco party with friends in the comfort of your own home? Keep that ground beef in the freezer. Here are three authentic recipes to jump start National Taco Day. Happy tacoing!

Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation – See more at:
Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation – See more at:
Courtesy of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation – See more at:

Tacos Of Mexican Rice And Hard Boiled Eggs
Recipe by Elena Irra, Tamales Elena

1 cup of short grain rice
2 cups of water
5 tbsp vegetable oil
3 cups water
4 Roma tomatoes
¼ medium onion
¼ chopped onion
Chopped cilantro
1 pinch cumin powder
6 large eggs
½ tsp. salt
2 garlic cloves
Corn tortillas
Molcajete salsa (recipe follows)

1. Heat a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the oil and fry the rice until the grains are light brown.

2. Place the tomatoes, onion, garlic, and one cup of water in a blender and pulse on high until pulpy.

3. Add the tomato puree to the pan, and cook with the rice for 5 minutes, stirring constantly.

4. Add 2 cups of warm water to the rice and tomato mixture.

5. Add salt and cumin then bring to a boil.

6. Once it reaches a boil, reduce heat to a low, add the eggs, cover and cook for 20 minutes. Once eggs are cooked, carefully peel under cool water. Return to pan.

7. Place some rice in the center of a tortilla, and place one hardboiled egg on top.

8. Add molcajete salsa

Molcajete Salsa

2 roma tomatoes, roasted until lightly charred
8 chiles Serranos, roasted until lightly charred
1 clove of garlic
Salt to taste

Blend all ingredients in a molcajete, or blender.

Chile (A Sauce For Tacos)
Recipe by chef Wes Avila, Guerilla Tacos

3 cups fresh tomatillos milperos
7 garlic cloves 
2 Habanero chiles
2 Serrano chiles
5 limes
1 cup fresh cilantro
2 tbs. Kosher salt

1. Soak tomatillos in warm water and remove husk. Place tomatillos In cold water and rinse twice. Set aside.

2. Wash and de-stem the chiles, rinse in cold water.

3. Cut about 1/3 of root side of cilantro off and discard. Wash remaining 2/3 cilantro under cold water.

4. Place all ingredients in food processor. Juice limes into the food processor. Pulse to incorporate ingredients.

5. Blend on high speed until well mixed.

6. Adjust seasoning to taste

Avila notes that “this chile is excellent on seafood and great on grilled meats.” Use within two days for best flavor.

Spicy Shrimp Tacos
Recipe by chef Javier Plascencia, Mision 19, Tijuana

16 oz. medium shrimp (21/25 count) cleaned and deveined
12 oz. shredded mozarella
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 oz. olive oil
1.5 oz red chili pepper flakes
2 oz. green onion, finely sliced
Salt and black pepper to taste
6 medium corn tortillas
Salsa mexicana (recipe follows)
Finely shredded cabbage (optional)

1. Heat a medium skillet; add oil, shrimp, garlic, chilli, green onion and sauté until shrimp are tender (about 2 mins.), then season with salt and pepper, set aside.

2. Place tortilla over a charcoal grill/or flat top, sprinkle cheese (2 oz) add shrimp 4-5 pieces.

3. Fold tortilla with filling in half, place it on the grate, and grill until crispy on both sides.

4. Serve hot, with salsa on the side and shredded cabbage on top.

Salsa mexicana

1 large tomato, diced
1 small white onion, diced
1 small bunch finely chopped cilantro
1 large fresh jalapeno, finely chopped (seeds and membrane removed)
Juice of 1 lemon.
Salt and pepper to taste
1 oz. water

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl. Allow to marinate about 20 minutes. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.

Chef Plascencia is a participating chef at this month’s Baja Culinary Festival, Oct. 24-27