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Author Notes: This is a rich and sweet taco meat. It goes very well with hickory smoked cheddar, either on the tacos, or if you have leftovers, on nachos. Inspired by Chocolate Tacos Recipe by Jon Yongfook, although this one does not have chocolate. —Adam Lockhart
- 1 pound ground beef
- 1.5 tablespoons Brown fig balsamic vinegar (from San Saba Olive Oil Company)
- 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
- 1 medium red onion, diced
- 2-3 jalapeños, deseeded, cored and diced
- 4 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1/4 cup brewed coffee
- 1.5 tablespoons chili powder
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 12 cherry tomatoes, quartered
- Salt and pepper
- In a medium mixing bowl, work the balsamic evenly into the ground beef. This will help tenderize the beef, and you can let it sit while you prep the vegetables.
- Heat a large skillet (or frying pan), and toast the cumin seeds until fragrant. Grind the cumin seeds with a mortar and pestle.
- Heat a large saucepan and coat both the saucepan and the skillet with a generous amount of olive oil.
- In the large saucepan, cook the onions, jalapeños and garlic on medium high heat, stirring regularly. It is okay if some of it sticks to the pan, because you will be deglazing.
- At the same time, sear and brown the beef in the skillet. It is important to do this in a separate pan, so that the steam and water from the vegetables do not boil the flavor out of the beef. You can remove it from heat if it is browned before the vegetable mixture is ready.
- Once the onions have caramelized, deglaze the saucepan with coffee and reduce heat to medium low.
- Add the beef, chili powder, cumin and paprika and mix thoroughly.
- Add water to almost cover the beef. Simmer and reduce to create a nice thick sauce.
- When it is nearly reduced but still has a few minutes to cook, add the cherry tomatoes and salt and pepper to taste.