Author Notes: Every summer my parents traveled to visit California relatives, and while there we always looked forward to making a “taquito run” to Olvera Street; a renowned Los Angeles market place that depicts Mexican and Latino culture. In fact, this is where I first ate Taquitos!
Growing up, taquitos were served as a Saturday night special a few times a year. I often helped cook and shred beef, prepare green Chile sauce and make a vegetable barley soup with the leftover broth, before finally rolling and frying the Taquitos. It was an all day project; these days I start the meat a couple days ahead and have adjusted the old family’s prep to fit modern times.
Taquito appetizers served with guacamole, green chile sauce or fresh salsa make an ideal hand held snack, for any occasion, they are always a crowd pleaser and first to go.
Makes easily 48 (plus) appetizer size taquitos
Shredded Beef – make a day (or two) ahead
- 3 pounds beef stew meat
- 1/2 large sweet onion – chopped
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 tablespoons Bragg Liquid Aminos (or substitute with soy sauce)
- Salt, Pepper & Onion powder - to season the shredded meat
- In a large brazier pan combine the first 4 ingredients and fill with enough water to cover the meat.
- Bring to a boil; skim off as much foam as you can. Reduce heat; cover and simmer about 2 hours or until the meat is very tender. Take off the heat and let sit, covered, about another hour.
- With a slotted spoon take out the meat and place onto a large platter; using two forks shred it all. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and onion powder to taste, add a few drops of the broth, store in an airtight container and refrigerate.
- Save the broth for other uses.
Rolling the Beef & Frying the Taquitos
- 2 packages - 24 count Mission extra thin corn tortillas
- Buttery cooking spray
- Clean dishtowel
- 48 fl oz canola oil
- Deep fat fryer
- Place 5 tortillas that have been generously sprayed with cooking spray onto half of the dishtowel. Fold the other half over the top and microwave (high power) for 1 minute.
- Let the tortillas cool a few seconds, but not too much or they will crack when rolling; just until they are easy to handle.
- Put 1-1/2 tablespoon shredded meat on each tortilla. Roll up very tightly, securing with 2 tooth picks, let them sit while repeating with the next 5 tortillas – and up until you have as many as needed.
- Note: at this point the Taquitos can be refrigerated up to overnight in an airtight container. Otherwise fry.
- Fry in deep hot fat (350°) for 1-2 minutes; fry 3-4 at a time, don’t over crowd. Transfer to a platter lined with a paper towel; sprinkle the hot Taquitos with salt.
- Continue frying, placing a paper towel between each layer.
- Serve with green chile sauce, my favorite; or fresh salsa and sour cream.