In our home, eating Mexican food is a regular thing. We have cravings for it, really. Having just gone on a vacation to the Villa Del Palmar in Loreto, Mexico, in the Baja peninsula where eating dishes with traditional ingredients from breakfast through dinner was highly anticipated, I was already trying to figure out how to replicate the recipes at home. They were that good! So when dinner time comes along on say, a Tuesday night, I will be prepared with a quick and easy meal to make.
By far one of my most memorable meals was lunch where we had grilled shrimp tacos. The fact that we were sitting outside enjoying the sunshine, warmth and water was salt on the proverbial margarita since it was freezing back home. But, oh those tacos were seriously good. Which then became my challenge to figure out the recipe in anticipation of Cinco de Mayo or even just a normal week night, truth be told!
In the international aisle, I discovered that Old El Paso has a wide variety of products available to make meal prep easier than ever.
Then, I noticed that along with flour tortillas, they now have Taco Boats. That makes me think of so many innovative ways to serve my shrimp tacos. And even room to add some additional ingredients….
For a quick meal, you can use Old El Paso’s Taco Seasoning and Chopped Green Chiles (for a little heat) which works whether you are doing steak, chicken or even black bean/vegetarian tacos. Add whatever toppings you like including purple cabbage (we eat with our eyes first, right?!), tomatoes, onions, cheese, olives, colored peppers and hot sauce. Or make it a taco bar so everyone can build his or her own taco boat. That is a sure way to get the kids to clean their plate when they create it themselves.
After thinking about the various ingredients I like to have in my tacos as well as remembering those from my vacation, I realized that these taco boats are going to be a big asset. When you like to pile that tortilla full (admit it, you do it too!), what inevitably happens is everything starts to fall out. Which is why I am loving the idea of these flour taco boats. They come in packages of 8 which gives me plenty to fill for dinner.
Ok, now that you are hungry for tacos, let me share my Chile Lime Grilled Shrimp, Jicama and Mango Taco Boat recipe. Just a heads up that they are going to become “that” recipe you make whether you are cooking for yourself, your family or guests. It’s filled with different flavors and textures and looks so pretty on a plate with all the colors of the ingredients.
Plus, all you need is a grill pan (or fry pan) to cook the shrimp. Since they cook through in just a few minutes, dinner can be ready in less than 40 minutes (most of the time is to infuse the shrimp with the marinade). Perfect for that weeknight meal.
By the way, I added an ingredient that I learned about many years ago in Mexico called jicama, also known as a Mexican turnip.
Have you tried it? It’s a root vegetable that isn’t so attractive on the outside. But, once you peel it (a knife is safer and easier than a vegetable peeler) and slice it into sticks, it has the look, texture and crunch of water chestnuts. It takes on whatever spices, sauces or pairings you have it with. It’s great to use with dips instead of celery, for example. I love it in tacos as it works so well with the soft tortilla shell and spices. Almost gives a cooling effect to the chile lime seasoning.
Then spoon into your Old El Paso Taco Boats.
This recipe is very adaptable to your cooking preferences. Add chicken instead of seafood if you prefer. Or if you like things spicy, add those jalapenos! No matter how you make it, using these Old El Paso Taco Boats makes for a fun presentation. Plus, they can easily hold so many delicious ingredients that you might find more uses for them than you expected. I’m thinking taco salad or even desserts. How would you use these taco boats?
Thanks for stopping by!
- 6-8 Old El Paso Taco Boats
- 1 pound uncooked large shrimp, 15 - 18 count, deveined, no shell
- 1 red onion, medium, diced
- 1 jicama, medium, peeled (with a knife is easiest), slice into matchsticks
- 2 mangos, cut into bite size cubes
- 2-3 avocados, dice in cubes
- 1 tablespoon whole cilantro leaves for garnish on each taco boat.
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup fresh lime juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh lime zest
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped coarsely
- 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 jalapeño, chopped finely, optional
- 1 teaspoons salt or to taste
- 1 teaspoon chili powder or to taste
- Lettuce or cabbage
- Mix marinade ingredients in a bowl or plastic bag.
- Add shrimp.
- Place in refrigerator for 20 minutes
- Heat grill pan.
- Add shrimp to grill pan. Shrimp cook very quickly - about 2-3 minutes a side. They will turn pink when ready to turn and will have some crispy edges when done.
- Once shrimp are cooked, cut them into thirds. Add to big bowl. Then add jicama, onions, mango and avocado. Squeeze lime juice over the mixture just to bring out the brightness of the flavors. Mix gently.
- Place taco boats onto a tray. Fill with mixture. Top with fresh cilantro and cheese if desired.
- I served with fresh guacamole and jicama sticks as well as Mango Watermelon Margaritas in celebration of Cinco de Mayo.