new easier taco salad
Initially, I was going to label this “new and improved” taco salad. But after going back and looking at the original taco salad I posted in November, 2010, I determined that it isn’t improved, just different, and a whole lot easier!
I love this dressing, it is so smooth and creamy. Feel free to add whatever else you’d like to the salad toppings; black beans, diced red or green onion, and pickled jalapenos are just a few things that come to mind.
I used the multi-grain Tostitos Scoops as my chips of choice. Connor thought that was a waste of the perfectly formed Scoops, so I dumped out the package and picked out all the broken pieces, so we wouldn’t waste a single “Scoop”! Then I had the brilliant idea of making Individual Taco Salad Bites as a party appetizer. If you decide to make these cuties for your next party – be sure to chop the lettuce finer, place the shredded cheese in the “Scoop” first, then the rest of the ingredients and fill at the last minute to keep them from getting soggy too quickly.
I used some of this delicious Jalapeno Olive Oil that I’d bought last year at The Olive Press store which was located inside the Jacuzzi Family Vineyards in Sonoma, California. But any olive oil you have or prefer will do nicely.
Turkey Taco Salad
Avocado & Cilantro Dressing
1 large ripe avocado, halved and pitted
1 bunch cilantro, leaves and fine stems
Juice of 1 lime
Juice of 1 lemon
2 garlic cloves, peeled
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound ground turkey
1 packet Taco seasoning mix
4 cups iceberg lettuce, rinsed and chopped
1 cup grated pepper jack cheese
2 avocado, peeled, pitted, and diced
4 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
1/2 cup salsa
1/4 cup sour cream
1 cup crushed tortilla chips
Dressing: Scoop out flesh of avocado and place in blender or food processor. Add cilantro, citrus juices, garlic, red wine and balsamic vinegars and olive oil. Blend on high until smooth and creamy.
Salad: In a medium skillet heat olive oil over medium heat, add turkey and taco seasoning mix and cook until turkey is browned and thoroughly cooked. Set aside to cool to room temperature.
In a large bowl or on a platter, layer the lettuce, turkey, cheese, avocado, and tomatoes. Dollop with the salsa, sour cream, and dressing.
Top with crushed chips. Toss and serve immediately.
Serves 8 to 10
Tip: To have the crispiest lettuce possible – slice or chop the lettuce, place in a salad spinner and rinse under cold water.
Spin dry and then place in a plastic bag that is lined with paper towels.
Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using.