Thursday, July 31, 2008

Calabacitas Wraps

There are many, many things I don't miss about Tucson--mostly the sheer variety of things that can kill you--but there is one thing I miss: La Indita. As a Southern California native, it took me some time to get used to the Tucson brand of Mexican food, which is Sonoran as opposed to Baja, but I came around to it eventually. I was lucky enough to live exactly two blocks from La Indita, which is the best Mexican food that town has to offer. It is, more precisely, a Tohono Tarascan Mexican restaurant. The food is cheap, plentiful, and vegan friendly. They even have vegan tamales (made by la abuela) that are to die for. But, it's not the tamales I went there for most days; it was the calabacitas. I made every effort to fill myself up with their home made chips and excellent salsa, but somehow I always found room for the main course. One tortilla, when unfolded, takes up half the table and is dangerously thin, so I'd fold it in half in a lame attempt at reinforcement and fill it with refried beans, calabacitas, the cabbage salad that decorated the plate, and some salsa. While I attempted to eat it before it fell apart and I had to lick it off my hands, I never succeeded. I did, however, succeed at gaining 30 pounds.

2 crookneck squash, sliced into rounds
2 zucchini, sliced into rounds
3 tomatoes, seeded and chopped
1 onion diced
1 can of corn (you can also use frozen or fresh, but I like the canned for this)
1 jalapeno, finely diced (use your judgment--for instance, the jalapenos are hot right now so I used half)
4 sprigs of cilantro

For the wrap:
Refried beans
Shredded Cabbage

Heat a small amount of oil in a cast iron dutch oven or similar pan. Saute the onion for about five minutes. Add both kinds of squash and let cook for couple of minutes. Add water. You don't need to cover the squash, but there needs to be enough to cook in for a while. Add tomatoes, corn, jalapeno, and cilantro. Next, add salt and garlic to taste. I usually like things garlicky, but I like to let the flavor of the squash shine through on this dish--especially this time of year. So, I add 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon of granulated garlic and closer to a teaspoon of salt. Keep stirring occasionally so all the squash gets cooked through. When the squash is cooked and the liquid has thickened a bit, it is done. Roll the calabacitas in a tortilla with refried beans, shredded cabbage, and a little bit of salsa.

If your burrito has a blowout, you're on the right track.

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