Tacos & Trowels

In our area we have a large Latin American population that migrates for farm work each year. You can see them in the field all summer long. Our local grocer has decided to cater to the population that comes in via school bus on Saturdays to shop. Authentic corn tacos, tostadas, Mesa flour, Fanta and kick butt canned jalapenos are all available in our small little town. The Latin American’s that live across the street, have opted for year round living. They have a great garden in their backyard every year. Impressive for such a short growing climate. I do garden each summer as well, and use our local seed library exchange often. I saw our neighbors Sunday afternoon, and waved from across the road. Ping, Ping went the email and it reminded me of reality again. It was an email Covid alert from various retail stores including a local Farm store. I’ve been on the mailing list for awhile, even though I am not a farmer. They were technically still open “to necessary purchases” only, but non essential services would be closing as of Tues. How long? Ford says 14 days…Medical officers are saying 4 months of quarantine may be necessary- I am not getting hopes up of only being two weeks.

I will answer your cry for help when you pray, and you will find and feel my presence…

Psalm 91

I rallied my troops, if we wanted to have some sense of normality, we would go for a drive to the farm store. I braced myself, would the shelves already be empty? The garden supplies would just be coming out. I felt slightly panicked, praying I climbed in the car with my long seed list. Doubt clouds my mind. Was I considered necessary, would they turn people away? Am I one of those crazy people preparing for doomsday, or was it just me being proactive? The line has somewhat blurred in last two weeks. I didn’t care at this point. My kids stayed in the car with their father.

The store was vacant. I was welcomed with a smile, no one turned me away. At the question “Can I buy more then one item?” The sale clerk laughed and said “Yes, why?” I explained how other places are limiting purchases to one item only. She pointed me to the seeds with gloved hands and I picked out my beans, beets, watermelon, squash, salads, carrots and even 2 types of tomatoes. As she rang it in I felt slightly guilty. Like, I was some kind of criminal being able to obtain all these seeds. (Remember the Ikea commercials – start the car!!) She asked if I found everything. I looked sheepishly at my feet and debated to complain in very Canadian style, “No actually, I wanted some red potato seeds and spring garlic, but that is ok, you have what you have.” She made a quick phone call and ordered it for me with shipping direct to my home. We chatted about recent event and the uncertainty of everything. “Well, I’m here, for today anyway” she said. She handed me my receipt. I felt leaving like a wonder woman. Strutting like a western gun slinger all the way out to truck. Yes, that just happened, God IS GOOD!!

My oldest overheard a conversation I had once with neighbors. Their thick accent had turned “taco’s” into “Chalko’s”. He has called them that ever since. We make homemade mango peach salsa, homemade Guac *Scroll for recipes below * and load ours up with sauteed black beans, corn, and any choice of roasted veggies . If your able to get out and grill, this can be whipped up in a snap. Tossing veg right on the grill and popping beans and corn on a cast iron pan to cook up. If not you can always make use of your oven. Unfortunately, ready made tacos are becoming short supply round here. If you cannot find corn tacos or tostadas, use a yeast free tortilla or my home made like my flat bread. Remember to wear your rubber gloves while chopping hot peppers – do not touch your eyes, and wash thoroughly as the oils can burn your mucus membranes. I have included alterations for those who may be Fasting sugar & yeast this season.

Weekend Taco (Bean filling)

  • 1 tbs olive oil
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 can black beans rinsed & drained
  • 1 can of corn drained -1 cup frozen
  • 1 Tbs cider vinegar (Use corn water or 100% apple juice if fasting)
  • 1/2 tbs Agave (omit if fasting)
  • 1/2 tbs smoked paprika
  • 1/2 tbs cumin (if you don’t like heat start with a tsp and work up to desired taste)

In large pan sautee garlic, beans and corn. Pour on cider, agave (or honey) and spices. Cook until warmed through. Add salt and pepper to taste before serving. Serve with your choice of roasted or grilled veg (Like red peppers, onions zucchini), Mango salsa and guacamole.

Erin’s Guacamole

Erin is my sister and provided me with this Super simple guacamole that thrives on real flavor. To me a guac should be like a yogurt sauce, a cooling agent to accompany the spice. My kids adored this guacamole. and ask for it now.

  • 1 avocado
  • 1/4 finely diced tomato
  • 1TB finely diced jalapeno
  • juice of 1/2 lime
  • 4 TB finely diced red onion or to taste
  • 1/2 tsp minced cilantro

Roughly mash avocado with fork (we prefer lumps- if you like puree by all means puree) Add remaining ingredients. Serve fresh. If saving for later Cover tightly with cling to prevent turning brown.

Easy Peach Mango Salsa

I found this Super easy peach salsa in a sales catalog almost 10 years ago- with some modifications it is still my go to salsa. I prefer fruit salsas over tomato based ones!

  • 3/4 cup peaches diced
  • 1/2 cup red onion diced
  • 1/2 cup yellow pepper diced
  • 1/2 cup peeled diced mango
  • 1 -2 TB jalapeno finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 1/2 tbs lime juice
  • 1/2 tsp minced cilantro

Combine all ingredients, cover and chill until serving.

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