Turkey Tacos Picadillo

Turkey Tacos PicadilloTaco Tuesday
In a not so shocking turn of events, we had tacos for dinner last night. We have tacos in some way shape or form at least once a week. So, this is not really news. We have a taco addiction and we are powerless to resist…

Ninety-nine percent of the time our taco fillings come straight off the grill. Usually, it’s skirt steak. Although, more and more I have been going the grilled chicken route, just to be a bit less heavy-handed with the red meat. Fish tacos are always tasty especially as it gets warmer. They’re even better if you are sitting on a deck and can wash them down with a cold Cerveza. (My mouth is totally watering…)

One of my sons, (We’ll call him the middle child even though he’s a twin because he plays that role perfectly.)is a big fan of all tacos. But, if pressed, he will tell you that he is partial to what I call American tacos. These are the loose ground meat tacos usually served in crunchy taco shells. I admit I am also a fan—especially when said meat is sprinkled over Fritos with cheese, lettuce, sour cream, and salsa. They’re a guilty pleasure. (Mom called them Mock Tacos and they’re kinda wrong but so, so good!)

For the same reason that I have been using a lot of grilled chicken lately, I went on a search for a loose meat taco with something other than ground beef. And, I was not surprised to find ground turkey as a popular option.

In the same way that turkey chili can be very good, ground turkey makes for a great taco filling. My one complaint about turkey though would be not enough flavor so I was looking for something with some oomph.

I played around with this recipe a bit and think I have found a winner. Feel free to up the spice or dial it back as per your preference and feed your inner middle child.

Turkey Tacos Picadillo

Yields 4 to 6 servings
Adapted from Food Network Kitchens

For the tacos
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 to 1 1/2 jalapeño pepper, stemmed, seeded and minced
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon Kosher salt, or to taste
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1 cup chopped canned tomatoes
1 pound ground turkey dark meat
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
Taco shells

For the toppings
Romaine or iceberg lettuce, thinly sliced
Tomatoes, cored and diced
Hass avocados, diced
Shredded Cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese
Sour cream

Make the filling
Place the canola oil, onions, garlic, jalapeño, and spices in a medium skillet and cook over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally until tender (about 10 minutes). Increase the heat to medium-high and add the canned tomatoes. Boil the filling mixture to thicken (about 2 minutes). Stir in the turkey and chicken broth.

Turn down the heat to a simmer and cook the filling mixture until the turkey is cooked through and the juices are thick (about 12 minutes). Do not allow it to dry out. Stir in the cilantro and season the taco filling with salt and pepper to taste.

Prepare the tacos
Spoon the turkey filling into the taco shells and add your favorite toppings.

You can also serve the filling and toppings in individual bowls and let everyone build their own tacos.

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