I recently did a client shoot for Marix, a restaurant that is a Tex Mex staple in the West Hollywood community. Three decades worth of Tex Mex ingenuity goes into their menu and I loved every bite I tried. While everything was delicious, I went totally over-the-moon for their puffy tacos! Crazy, mind-blowing delish! Soft and slightly crisp with succulent meat and crunchy veggies is about as good as it gets. Seriously. SERIOUSLY!
If you can’t make it to Marix, the next best thing is making these babies at home. I hardly ever fry anything. I am fryer lazy. Big time fryer lazy. But these puffy tacos are worth every drop of oil and mess it takes to make them. Trust me!
Tried ’em? Let me know what you think. What are some dishes you’ve had that totally blew your food world wide open?
My Instant Pot carnitas work beautifully with these puffy tacos. The crisp, pillowy tacos are delicious with tender, juicy chunks of carnitas. SO good!
Food Styling by The Food Artist
- 1 recipe succulent INSTANT POT CARNITAS
- 1 pound fresh masa for tortillas (OR 1½ cups of masa harina mixed with 1 cup warm water and left to rest, covered, for 15 minutes)
- vegetable oil, for frying
- Kosher salt
- Fill a dutch oven with 3 inches oil and heat over high heat to about 375°F. Pull off a piece of masa about the size of a ping pong ball and form into a ball. Place the dough between two sheets of wax paper and press dough into a thin round in a tortilla press or using a rolling pin.
- Drop the pressed masa tortilla in the hot oil and let fry. Use a metal spatula to repeatedly douse the tortilla with the hot oil, until it floats and puffs (about 10 seconds). Use the metal spatula to carefully press middle of tortilla down to create a taco-shell shape. Hold spatula in place until the taco shape sets.
- Remove tortilla from oil and drain. Transfer to a paper towel lined baking pan and sprinkle with salt to taste.
- Repeat with remaining masa dough.
- Assemble each shell starting with the carnitas, then pickled red onions, shredded lettuce, cilantro, and queso fresco crumbles. Top each taco with a generous squeeze of lime.
- Serve with rice and beans (and good tequila;) if desired.