I have to admit that I am prejudiced against taco salads. And curiously fascinated by them, in the same way that jello salad fascinates me. On the one hand they are sort of yummy, on the other hand they have a bit of a suburban 1950's dare I say, trashy mystique? And how we love/ hate that mystique. This ambivalence might explain why I always want to challenge peoples' snobbishness about food. I struggle with my own snobbishness about food, and that is a characteristic I find hard to swallow in people-snobbishness that is. I perfectly understand wanting to be healthy, vegetarian, gluten, lactose or dye free, but can we please lose the attitude people? It is f o o d. And to me it is as much about community as it is nourishment, or at least I strive for it to have that meaning. And sometimes it is about stress and needing chocolate, which is unfortunate.
I always wanted to bring a glowing mountain of a lime jello salad, glittering with jewel -like, barely recognizable fruit to Laurie and Anton's organic farm parties. Just to see peoples' reactions. I don't even like jello. But when my Nana Kitty made Ambrosia salad I found it hard to resist (of course anything mixed with whipped cream is iressistable to me).
I know, I am all over the place now. And here I am about to relay another un-recipe. and it almost seems too obvious. But the fact is that taco salad can be healthy and filling and quite easy. I made one for myself for lunch today.
tomatoes, if you dare eat them out of season, use grape or cherry.
olives are great if you have them
any other veg. that you have around
black beans, rinsed, right out of the can
cilantro, if you're lucky
small dollop of plain yogurt or sour cream
dollop of salsa
drizzle of olive oil
red wine vinegar
Chop up the vegetables. stir in dressing accoutrements
and if you want to really hit that retro vibe throw in some broken tortilla chips. Mix it together watch some Mad Men and know that your grandma (or someone else's) is looking lovingly over your shoulder.