Come on, you missed us didn’t you? Well fear not! We’re back! Amanda and I each had fairly active summers, which made Skype and planning our next meal a little difficult. So, we took little break this summer but are back in the kitchens now that autumn is upon us.
For this DistanceDishes dinner, we wanted to make a meal that summed up our food experience of the summer. While Amanda had her own epic adventures (we’re talking international y’all), that I’ll let her sum up later, I had my own fair share of trips to the airport. For work, I was back and forth to Washington DC a few times this summer which allowed me to escape the usual food haunts at home. I’ve been back and forth to DC a few times this year and I’ve begun to make it a tradition to treat myself to delicious Thai food. I was also lucky enough to meet up with some great DC friends at a Jose Andres restaurant and gorge myself of delicious tacos (and margaritas). I wanted to combine these two great memories into my “summer dish” with some Thai themed tacos.
Two other, slightly lazy but also semi-appropriate reasons I went with this dish. With all the travel, I have become terrible at getting to the grocery store regularly. Also, as I was gone, my Thai Basil plant grew too large for itself and fell over. Since I only had a few days to use it up, these Thai Basil tacos were the perfect meal. Believe me though, my laziness is your benefit. This makes for a very flavorful, quick and easy meal any night whether you’ve developed a DC Thai food addiction or not.
- 1/4 cup soy sauce
- 1 tbsp sesame oil
- 2 tbsp brown sugar
- 2 tbsp mirin
- 1 tbsp minced ginger
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 tsp fish sauce
- 1 tbsp corn starch
- 2 green onions, diced with greens and white separates
- 1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
- 1 cup diced bell pepper (I used a combination of red and green)
- 1/2 cup roughly chopped Thai basil
- 1 lb ground beef
- Lettuce for topping
Avocado Lime Topping:
- 1/2 avocado
- 1/4 cup fresh cilantro
- 1/2 cup yogurt
- 1/4 cup lime juice
- salt to taste (1/4 tsp to start)
- In a small bowl, whisk together soy sauce, sesame oil, brown sugar, mirin, ginger, garlic, the whites of your green onions, fish sauce and cornstarch. Set aside.
- Over medium heat, add the ground beef to a medium skillet or saucepan. Break up the beef and cook until meat is browned, about 5 minutes. Remove the beef from the pan and transfer to a small bowl (or whatever holding area you prefer–paper plate for easy cleanup? Sure!) and drain excess fat (for responsible discarding).
- Return your pan to medium heat and add your diced yellow onion and bell peppers. Cook until onions become slightly translucent and bell peppers start to become soft, about 3-5 minutes.
- Return the cooked ground beef to your pan with the onions/peppers and pour your soy sauce mixture over ingredients in pan. Stir to ensure all ingredients are fully incorporated. Soy sauce mixture should begin bubbling and stir for an extra 1-2 minutes until sauce begins to thicken. Stir in your Thai basil and continue stirring until basil is just wilting.
- Remove from heat, garnish with greens of the green onions and prepare your tacos to serve.
For the avocado lime topping:
- Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth. Place a dollop on top of a hefty scoop of your basil beef on top of a flour tortilla. Enjoy!
Wine Pairing: There are a lot of (delicious) flavors going on here, but a classic like a Cabernet Sauvignon probably wouldn’t be a bad choice. Cheers!