Tacomiendo, Radishes, and Pickling

One fine day in Culver City, I was mad craving some tacos and didn’t feel like trekking to the (real) LA area for some legitimate, authentic ones. Like the avid Yelper that I am, I looked up tacos in Culver City and it led me to Tacomiendo. Culver City actually has a pretty large Hispanic population, so the area that Tacomiendo is located is filled with hidden gems like a Mexican bakery and some family-style Mexican restaurants. I usually find myself at Tacomiendo for a mid-day snack or late night taco craving and I love going there alone because it’s busy yet peaceful and there’s something comforting about eating a taco or two in solitude in the corner of a homey joint with strangers surrounding you. Okay I may not have sold that very well…but it’s just my thing.

So to get to my point, Tacomiendo has a salsa bar filled with different kinds of salsas and fresh radishes and pickled whole jalapenos! Few Mexican places can boast such freebies, so even though I only get one taco, I stuff it with all these goodies! Tacomiendo inspired me to purchase some radishes and to begin my pickling journey and here are the fruits of that:

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Fresh radishes from Sprouts. They’re so beautiful! The leafy ends are usually trimmed off at the salsa bar at Tacomiendo but I find that they are so adorable with those leaves attached.

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I purchased the radishes to include them in a Mexican-inspired salad! Spinach, halved grape tomatoes, radishes sliced thinly, avocado chunks and
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cilantro lime chicken! To make the chicken, I marinated it with some lime juice and cilantro and right before pan-frying them (grilling would make them much tastier!), I sprinkled some salt and pepper. I was incredibly surprised at how flavorful they were despite the ten-minute marinating time and simple ingredients. I believe grilling them would’ve added a smoky flavor!

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I topped the salad with a cilantro-lime dressing recipe, which I found to have been a little too heavy on the honey. I’m trying to perfect my own recipe that will most likely be more citrusy and less sweet. Again, I’m always for more sour and spicier flavors!

And as for the pickling, so far I’ve pickled red onions and jalapenos and I’ve decided that my pickling adventures warrant a whole post, so more on that later!
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My Wednesday morning was spent in the kitchen, browning butter, baking cookies, boiling vinegar and pickling jalapenos! The progression of smells in the kitchen was definitely…interesting. Brown butter is probably one of my all-time favorite smells and vinegar is just…not. I just felt like I needed to bake cookies to re-establish the baking/cooking equilibrium in my kitchen! Plus, the hunt for the best chocolate chip cookie recipe is never ending (at least for now).

And now I’m off to my kitchen to bake a coffee cake for church tomorrow! Adios amigos!

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