Tacos on the Soft Shell

Despite feeling knackered after hours of fresh air hiking to and exploring nearby ice caves yesterday and working up a real good appetite, we had a craving that couldn’t be satiated with any old meal. It would have been easy enough to turn supper into , “You know, it’s been about a year since we went to [insert awful fast food place of choice – with us that usually means Dirty Bird]…But cravings + trying to still eat well overrided any fatigue, and we made homemade soft shell tacos.

Maybe it was the fatgiue or hunger…but it was seriously in our top five best homemade meals ever.

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Other than the tacos, totally made up the recipes – and could feed four for about $15.

Steak Tacos

Steak of your choice, rubbed with coarse sea salt, cracked black pepper, and touches of onion powder, garlic salt, cumin, and chili flakes. Fry to your desired tenderness – I like my cow to still be mooing, so medium-rare for us – then cut diagonally against the grain into strips.

Slaw: instead of lettuce, we picked up a bag of pre-cut broccoli slaw. Put half in a container, and dressed with a few pinches of celery seeds and 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar.

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Cilantro crema: Wash half a bunch of cilantro, and 1 jalapeño with stem removed (but seeds still intact), and put in a bowl with a small container of sour cream and juice from half a lime. Blend with stickblender until smooth.

The tortillas: I’ve tried a few recipes, but this one is the clear winner: Best Ever Homemade Flour Tortillas

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Yeah it takes a few to make, but as I’ve been cooking more and trying to eat better,  store-bought breads and I have had a falling-out. The difference is unbelievable and you’ll be happy you made these.

So delicious. Maybe taco truck is in the cards.

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Adventures of a Baker with Limited Visuospatial Abilities

So. I have a sunny, sweet friend who also happens to be the gang’s cake decorator and provider. She wields fondant wonderfully and creates some beautiful cakes. She made the cake for my “Alice in Wonderland”-themed photo shoot (and then modelled as Alice).

She makes cool Halloween cakes for her parties. 


I enlisted her to make my sister’s bachelorette cake, which went over a storm.


Her birthday was today, and while there was no official party per se, I told her she has to have a piece of cake on her birthday.

Enter me. I’m confidant in my ability to make tasty cakes. I can also whip up a pretty mean frosting. It will look like the dog licked it on (and she may well have, as I have to turn my back at some point, and she’s wily), but it’s the end result that counts, right?

After looking through her Pinterest board on cakes, I realized it would be foolish to attempt fondant. Unless it was an Indiana Jones cake and I could just pile hundreds of fondant snakes on it, I wasn’t going to try and make daffodils or a unicorn prancing in a meadow. (I don’t know why my train of thought went there.)

I started with two types of cakes for this. Both are just awesome (as I plied one of the kids and Ben with samples – neither have sweet tooths, as I’ve eluded previously, so if they liked it, I had winners). Both were also pretty easy in terms of steps – Gandalf the Grey did most of the work, and there was the odd sifting or separation of eggs. Nothing wild.

Red Velvet Cake (Cake Boss)
Fluffy White Cake (Bakerita)

The filling was a chocolate cream cheese frosting, which I used between the layers as well as the crumb coat; the pink roses were made with an American buttercream frosting – a traditional “birthday cake” frosting and definitely sweet. And the instructions for the roses was dead easy. (The 1M tip was found at Bulk Barn, along with a ton of different gel food colours.)

A pretty quick cake to make in baking terms, but looking pretty fancy. Can’t wait to try it again and a gradient of colours.