Like a sunny Saturday, an avocado must never be wasted. Sure, a few brown specks are okay. But you let one sit too long, and you instantly become a fool.
Unfortunately, a fool I have been, many times over. Beneath the glorious bowl of oranges and bananas sitting on my windowsill, I’ve had one too many avocados bury themselves to death. Not good. That luxuriously creamy flesh does not come without a price. And it doesn’t help that this price seems to be stuck on a ski lift forever going up. The sight of $2 per avocado makes me feel anything but warm inside.
However, I will still subject myself to make the occasional splurge every now and then so I can scoop that golden green onto my taco. I’m convinced it’s well-worth the guessing game at the store of choosing the one that won’t be bruised, or the waiting game for the green-skinned one to finally become ripe. One thing is for sure though. Now that avocados are more of a luxury than ever, there’s no way they’ll be slipping into any sort of brown mush from biding their time on my counter.
What does all this avocado talk have to do with this recipe? Well, you see, I bought the avocado listed below to make tacos – a regular occurrence in my kitchen. Cumin, coriander, garlic and onion are my staples for a pinto bean filling. But you also have to have the toppings, avocado being one, along with salsa, lettuce, and maybe some cheese and/or sour cream. I had none of those on-hand except an avocado that was quickly headed past its prime. What I did have was all of the ingredients to make a saucier, BBQ-styled filling, which in my mind, goes just as well with avocado and tortillas.
This was an avocado-saver, and a delicious weeknight meal. I don’t like my BBQ sauces overly sweet, especially in tacos, so these BBQ’d beans err more on the savory side. However, they still have that tomato tang you’d want and expect, and just like standard tacos, help create a package full of flavor. With all the tacos I eat, it’s definitely nice to have the change of pace.
- -1 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil
- -2 small onions, separated and diced
- -1 large clove garlic, minced
- -2 1/2 Tbsp. tomato paste
- -1 tsp. cumin
- -2 tsp. chili powder
- -1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
- -Cinnamon, 2 dashes
- -2 tsp. brown sugar
- -2 scant Tbsp. soy sauce
- 1/2 cup water
- -1/2 lime, juiced
- -1 (15oz.) can pinto beans, drained
- -1 avocado, sliced and sprinkled with salt
- -1 cup of spinach
- -4 soft, whole wheat 10-inch taco shells
- Heat oil over medium high. Add one onion and sauté until translucent. Stir in garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Add spices, tomato paste and brown sugar and stir frequently for 30 seconds. Pour in water, and soy sauce.
- Bring to a simmer, then add pinto beans. Reduce heat so that a low simmer is maintained. Cook for 10-15 minutes, or until beans are fairly thick, stirring from time to time to keep sauce from sticking. Squeeze lime on top, and stir.
- Remove from heat. Divide spinach between taco shells and then sprinkle each with uncooked diced onion. Spoon hot beans over top. Top with salted avocado. Serve.