Navajo Tacos

Mr. Blue Eyes tells a story about how one of his history teachers was teaching them about the Sioux Native American Tribe. The teacher got up and wrote “Sew” on the black board (this was before white boards–when did I get so old?). No kidding. The man should have been fired on the spot. I know a regular Joe could have made that same mistake, but this guy was TEACHING the class. Fired.

What does this have to do with cooking? Absolutely nothing. But if you’re going to make Navajo Tacos, you have to know how to say it. The “j” says the “H” sound. Don’t let it tell you otherwise. Nava-hoe. Say it with me, now. Nava-hoe. Let’s try it with the correct spelling. Navajo. Good.

Also, before we begin: I am not using native Navajo Fry Bread. It’s fairly easy to do and maybe someday I’ll make a post of it, but today is not that day. I am not an experienced Fry Bread maker and so I stick to what I know–regular old yeast-risen dough.

Let’s begin, shall we?

Meat Mixture Ingredients*:
1 Medium Onion
1 lb Ground Beef
2.5 – 3 cups Chicken Broth
1 Tbsp Chili Powder
2 cloves Garlic, chopped (or use powdered)
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp dry oregano
2 tsp dry basil
2 cans Pinto Beans

1. In a Large pot, saute the onion in a Tbsp butter or oil, about 3 minutes, until limp.
2. Add ground beef and brown. Drain off any fat.
3. Add the chicken broth and all the herbs. Stir until combined. Add beans.
4. Set to simmer and stir occasionally. (I also do this in the morning and put it in my crock pot on Warm for dinner in the evening.)

Fried Scones Ingredients**:
Bread Dough: I use this recipe. You can also use Frozen Rolls–thawed, or whip up some fry bread yourself.
2 – 4 cups Vegetable Oil

1. In a Large Skillet, pour oil in until there’s about 1/2″+ in the bottom. Heat the oil over med/high heat.
2. While the oil is heating, roll out a portion of bread dough on a slightly floured surface. Using a pizza cutter or knife, cut into sections. OR take a large handful of dough and work it flat into a disc shape (if you are using frozen rolls, for example).

3. When the oil is hot (and not until then!), gently place a section of bread into the oil. Let it cook about 1 minute or until lightly browned. It will puff up–and it’s supposed to! Using tongs or two forks, gently turn it over. Be CAREFUL! Oil burns are NO FUN.

4. Remove onto a paper towel and keep warm in the oven, if needed.

Don’t be fooled! I used paper towels between each layer, but that wouldn’t look very good in a picture, would it?

Topping Ingredients:
1-2 Large ripe tomatoes, chopped
3/4 lb cheese, shredded (we use Cheddar)
1 sm bag (or 1/2 head) Lettuce, shredded
1 C sliced green onions
1 C sour cream
Salsa (if preferred. I like it. Mr. Blue Eyes does not.) 🙂

Layer a Scone, a ladle full of meat sauce, and the toppings you want onto a plate. Cut into it with a fork, or eat it by hand.

*I have found that sometimes the chicken broth needs a little thickening. It tastes great without the thickening, but it can be a little runny. This leads to soggy scones. Gross! Use a little corn starch and cold water (maybe 1/3 C corn starch to 1/4 C water).

**Scones are DELICIOUS lathered in a layer of honey/butter, too! We always leave some room for this delectable dessert!

Source: Modified from a good family friend, Janet

~Kara

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3 comments

  1. Julie says:

    I LOVE Navajo Tacos! We like ours with Ranch Dressing, a la BYU Cougar Eat days (back in the day…sadness…it is no longer the same). I used to fry my bread, but now I just lay it on a dry nonstick griddle and cook it that way. It's still tasty!

  2. Anne B. says:

    Ranch is good on it, too! I can't believe I forgot to put it on the list. Do you eat yours with sour cream?

    How do you "fry" them on the griddle? Like pancakes…except thicker dough? Sounds a lot easier than having to deal with the oil mess! I'll have to try it!

  3. Julie says:

    We use Ranch most of the time but if I don't have it, we use sour cream.

    I just roll out the dough, cut it into pieces and lay it right on my nonstick griddle. I cook each side until golden brown. Sometimes these little guys don't even make it to becoming Navajo Tacos because we end up spreading them with butter and cinnamon sugar!

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