The Simple Trick For Homemade Crunchy Taco Shells

Forget about limiting yourself to Taco Tuesday. There's no reason not to taco whenever you please. The taco isn't simply a food item; it's a whole vibrant and diverse food category. Fish, shrimp, chicken, vegetarian ... practically anything can be a taco filling. Tacos can be straightforward street food, like these smoked chicken tacos, or they can be elevated to an art form, like these luxe duck confit tacos.

The start of any taco is the tortilla. Of course, your first taco decision is between flour and corn tortillas. Mexican food purists may choose to start with masa and make their own classic corn tortillas, or you may just pick up a bag from the supermarket. Flour tortillas tend to be sturdier than corn tortillas, which are often doubled up to contain all the delicious taco fillings. On the controversial topic of crunchy vs. soft taco shells, The University of Wyoming's College of Agricultural and Natural Resources declares that authentic tacos are soft, and the crunchy taco shell is the Americanized version, created in 1949. Sure, you can find a box of crunchy taco shells at the store, but there's a super simple way to make them at home.

Use your oven rack

If you're craving a classic crunchy taco and don't have any taco shells on hand, don't despair. If you have tortillas — either corn or flour will do — you're in business. Eat This, Not That! shares a great tip: Heat your oven to 350 degrees and carefully position your tortillas to drape over two adjacent grates of your oven rack. After about ten minutes, you'll have a perfectly shaped crispy tortilla shell, complete with a flat bottom that lets you pile in fillings and set the taco down between bites.

Now your sole quandary is which filling to choose. If you're jonesing for a fish taco, we love this beer-battered version. And, regardless of whether you choose spicy ground beef or tasty tri-tip steak, there's a sure-fire topping that wakes up every taco. Keeping some pickled onions on hand ensures you're always ready to dress up every taco with loads of flavor and a piquant crunch.