National Taco Day: A Lifelong Love Affair With Tacos
October 4 is National Taco Day, but this is a food that is so wonderful it deserves to be celebrated throughout the year.
Tacos have a long North American history, predating the arrival of Europeans in Mexico. It would seem the original meat of choice in tacos was small fish, and after all these centuries we are stuffing our tacos with every kind of meat imaginable.
I can't really explain my love of tacos, but I know it has been a lifelong infatuation.
As a kid, tacos was the favorite meal of the month, usually on a Friday night. It also represented one of the very few meals when we were allowed to drink soda pop with our dinner, which made it even more special.
There are many ways to enjoy the goodness of tacos, and I can't say there is a right way and a wrong way. Each of us has a preferred method of preparing tacos, and each of us should be free to express our adoration for tacos any way we seem fit. Restaurant tacos are fine, but I prefer making my own at home.
My belief is that less is more - and less is better. The makeup of tacos has changed over the years and nowadays it seems like anything goes when it comes to stuff you can put on a taco. But, not for me. Call me traditional, call me old-fashioned, but the best taco requires just three ingredients.
It begins with a soft corn tortilla. You start with the meat - ground beef or turkey, add some smooth hot sauce, a generous sprinkling of cheese, and top it off with lettuce. That's it. That's all you need for a great taco. Nothing more, nothing less.
However, I understand completely if you would like to add tomatoes and sour cream, and I would even understand if wanted to throw in some avocados, black olives, and onions. You just have to now that you will never ever find such things on any taco of mine.
I am celebrating National Taco Day, but tacos deserve more than a day. That is why I enjoy taco week at least once a month. Taco week means 5-7 consecutive days of savoring the deliciousness of this perfect food. Besides being a wonderfully yummy meal, daily meal prep is quick and easy.
The meat is cooked up at the beginning of the week and reheated each day. You simply cut up a little lettuce each day, fry up some tortillas in some fat-free cooking spray, and your meal is ready in just minutes.
People that know about my taco fetish ask me if ever get tired of tacos. So far, I have answered the question with a resounding NO. It's not that I want to do tacos EVERY day, but I certainly see absolutely nothing wrong with enjoying tacos every day for a week every month of the year.
My admonition to you, taco lover, is to embrace the obsession. Don't run from it, don't hide from it. Tacos should be enjoyed regularly and frequently, regardless of how you may choose to stuff them. Having tacos for a week once a month may be breaking the rules of food, but if eating tacos for a week at a time is wrong, I don't want to be right.