Huevos rancheros tacos


Huevos rancheros is a rural Mexican dish, usually served for breakfast. Translated from Spanish it means rancher's eggs. It can vary a bit exactly what you get but it's usually a tomato chilli sauce with eggs and some kind of bread. In fact it's not all that different to the middle-eastern breakfast dish shakshuka. You might also get refried beans, avocado or rice on the side as well.

In this recipe for huevos rancheros I've served the eggs with a mild but tasty tomato and pepper sauce and a portion of black beans in some Old El Paso stand 'n' stuff tacos. These tacos worked better for us as a family that the crunchy corn ones because a. Mr R doesn't like the crunchy ones and b. have you ever seen the mess caused by a toddler trying to eat a crunchy taco? Personally I prefer the taste of the corn tortillas but the kids loved these. The soft taco kit comes with a tomato stir in sauce and a cool herb topping mix.

Seeing as I've just mentioned the mess that a toddler makes when trying to eat a taco this is a good time to mention table manners. R is six now and he's a pretty neat eater (when he's eating at all that is). He uses his knife and fork well and pretty much always eats with his mouth closed. Miss R is not at all keen on cutlery though. She nearly always eats with her hands usually resulting in half of the food going on the floor. Our dustpan and brush is very well used. Baby S is 15 months old and also likes eating with his hands, even tomato soup! (Mind you, at lunch time today he insisted on eating his soup with a fork.)

According to research carried out by Old El Paso, table manners are still something that us Brits take very seriously. Despite eating an estimated 188 million meals with our hands, and 42% of us claiming to be more relaxed about table manners than our parents, we still hate things like people talking with their mouths full. These huevos rancheros tacos aren't the easiest things to eat with a knife and fork though, so I'd recommend going with your hands the whole way!

To make this a hidden vegetable dish for your kids you could blend the sauce so the peppers are hidden. I opted not to do this as I'm increasingly finding that, depending on the vegetables, some of them get eaten. Well-cooked, soft peppers are starting to be accepted by both R and Miss R. Neither of them were all that keen on the black beans but Baby S goes wild for them. He picks them out and eats them like raisins. In fact, he might even think they're raisins. I really hope his good eating lasts and he doesn't become as fussy as his siblings.

Here's how to make these huevos rancheros tacos:

Makes 8
1 pack of El Paso stand 'n' stuff tacos
8 eggs

For the beans
1 tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, finely chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 red chilli, finely chopped (optional)
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1 x 400g tin of black beans in water
100ml vegetable stock
Juice of one lime
A handful of fresh coriander, chopped
Salt and pepper

For the rancheros sauce
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1-2 red chillies, chopped (optional)
1 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
2 red, yellow or orange peppers, sliced
2 x 400g tins of chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato puree
1 tbsp soy sauce*
Juice of one lime
Handful of fresh coriander

First make the beans. Heat a tablespoon of olive oil in a non-stick frying pan. Add the onions and cook over a medium heat, stirring often, until soft. Add the garlic and chilli (if using). Stir well and cook for two minutes. Stir through the ground cumin. Pour in the tin of black beans and water, and add the vegetable stock. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 20-25 minutes, stirring often, until thick. The beans benefit from being made in advance and taste even better the next day. Just before serving stir through the lime juice, fresh coriander and salt and pepper to taste.

To make the rancheros sauce heat the olive oil in a large heavy based pan. Add the sliced onion and cook over a medium heat, stirring often, until soft. Stir through the garlic and chilli if using, then the oregano and ground cumin. Cook for a minute or two then add the peppers, stir well and cover. Cook on a low heat for 10 minutes or until the peppers are soft. At this stage add the chopped tomatoes, tomato puree and soy sauce. Cook for 15-20 minutes, until the sauce has thickened. Just before you're ready to serve add the lime juice and fresh coriander.

Fry the eggs and keep warm. Heat the tacos as per the packet instructions.

Serve with guacamole, salsa, sour cream, jalapeños and grated cheese as preferred and let everyone tuck in and help themselves.

*I got the idea to use soy sauce in this from this recipe on Serious Eats. I was intrigued so I tried it and it definitely adds to the flavour. Try it!

Disclaimer: I was sent some products by Old El Paso with which I created this recipe. I received no other payment for this post.