#TortillaChallenge | A Gringo's Mission



What would you do if you only had one tortilla?

This was the question that consumed me Sunday night as I warmed my last tortilla on my Weber grill while the chicken breasts finished cooking. The obvious answer is “buy more,” but what if it were the very last tortilla IN THE WORLD?

What would you fill it with? Chicken, steak, fajita veggies? Would it be corn or flour? Cold? Warm? Crispy or soft? Folded in half for a quesadilla? Salsa verde or roja? Or would you make enchiladas?

Friends often send me articles about the best taco joints or every time Taco Bell or Chipotle is in the news. They also treat my photos like a variation of “Where’s Waldo?” Surely there’s a tortilla in that photo somewhere.

I am a tortilla-eating fiend. Think of the Cookie Monster, but with tortillas. I will use them in place of plates. I will eat them on their own. I prefer flour to corn, mainly because I’m a gringo. But yellow corn tortillas tend to fall part each time I use them.

Incapable of going a day without my beloved, I went to the store Monday night and restocked with a 36 pack of small, white corn tortillas.

Thus begins the #TortillaChallenge! Post your ideas in the comments or use the hashtag on Instagram and Twitter.


For the next 36 tortillas I will do my best to make different dishes and highlight the supreme versatility of the circular wünder food.

The first three tortillas were dinner on night one. After warming the blanco discs, I sprinkled shredded cheddar cheese, then topped the melting queso with slices of grilled chicken. Arugula and halved cherry tomatoes came next before a light drizzling of #BBANCH.

Each tortilla was delicious. But I can do better.

Thirty three tortillas remain.

Are you up for the challenge?



Ultimate Guacamole Recipe & Turkey Taco Tuesday


I don’t trust any guacamole recipe that doesn’t yield a bathtub full of the green stuff. Most recipes will mislead you and instruct you to peel the avocados or mix salt with lime juice.


Step one should always be: find a larger vessel, like an unused ship or timpani.

Step two: find more avocados. However many you have, it isn’t enough.

Then multiply whatever inadequate recipe you were following by a multiple of 10 and proceed.

The snowicane named Nika is hitting Chicago tonight, so I loaded up on the essentials at the grocery: bell peppers, cilantro and avocados. When they start naming snow storms you know it’s serious. Will this be my last meal?

After snacking on cold pizza, I started my cooking. I’ve outlined my basic approach to tacos on here before. Quick recap: sauté onions, garlic, peppers. Season with s&p. Brown meat. Add cumin, chili powder and oregano. Finish cooking meat. Heat tortillas–we are civilized aren’t we? Add cilantro.



Bring it on Nika. I have food for 2-3 days and I found yogurt that may or may not be expired. I’m saving that until shit gets real.


Gringo’s Confessions


The other night I was at a fancy shamancy dinner and was chatting about best meals to cook with a date. This conversation was with a man in his 50s who identified himself as a trophy husband, a career goal not too far from my own. He asserted that French cuisine was the best, since Italian and Mexican are common flavors. The last thing I want is my high-achieving future wife to think I’m common.

While some of my friends take Sunday Funday to be brunch and boozing, for me it means culinary project day. Eventually, I’ll start planning the week’s meals. Once that occurs I can truly become someone’s doting house husband.

Sunday night’s supper (a word I’m bringing back) involved homemade salsa verde and spice-rubbed chicken breasts. The result: best tacos I’ve had this year. Bonus for you, it’s hella simple. We will have to wait to see how successful it is as wife bait.

Continue reading Gringo’s Confessions