If you’re a fan of plant-based restaurants, you’ve probably heard of Gracias Madre. The Los Angeles mainstay has been serving up mouthwatering California-inspired Mexican cuisine (and some serious cocktails) since 2014, consistently demonstrating and elevating just how creative and tasty a vegan diet can actually be.
“We use 40 different chiles in our kitchen, each with its own flavor profile and nuances,” says chef Diana Briscoe. “Our plant-based food is highlighted by these chiles, along with fresh herbs and spices. Our recipes feature a mix of traditional and modern ingredients and cooking methods, such as masa harina for handmade tortillas and agar agar to set our coffee flan.”
Now, with The Gracias Madre Cookbook, the storied restaurant is inviting fans to recreate some of its favorite recipes in their own kitchens. The 125 recipes included showcase the three core ingredients of Mesoamerican culture: beans, corn, and chiles.
“The cookbook was created in hopes our recipes will teach vegans and non-vegans alike a few new cooking methods and inspire them to enjoy more plant-based meals at home,” says Briscoe. “I encourage people to not make plant-based cooking too complicated at home; it can be as simple as letting the fresh ingredients shine.”
A prime example? The restaurant’s jackfruit mixiote tacos. And you can use the recipe below to make the mouth-watering meal yourself.
Gracias Madre’s Jackfruit Mixiote Tacos Recipe
To make these mouthwatering tacos, start with the jackfruit filling. “Our jackfruit mixote tacos are inspired by a traditional Aztec dish which became popularized in the heart of Mexico,” says Briscoe. “Jackfruit is braised with chiles, salsa ranchers, and barbecue sauce until it’s tender. The jackfruit soaks up all that flavor and takes on a shredded meat-like texture. They’re satisfying, nutritious, and delicious.”
Get cooking and taste for yourself!
2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp ground cumin
1⁄2 tsp chipotle powder
1 (20-ounce) can jackfruit in water or brine, drained, rinsed, and broken up
1⁄2 cup salsa
1⁄3 cup barbecue sauce
1 small dried ancho chile, toasted in a dry pan until fragrant
1⁄4 tsp Himalayan salt
1. In a large nonstick or cast-iron pan over medium heat, heat the oil.
2. Add the onion, garlic, cumin, and chipotle powder and cook until the onion has softened and the spices are very fragrant, about 5 minutes.
3. Add the jackfruit and cook, stirring occasionally, until some of the liquid from the jackfruit has cooked out, another 5 to 7 minutes.
4. In a high-speed blender, add the salsa ranchera, barbecue sauce, ancho chile, brown sugar, and salt. Blend until smooth.
5. Add the mixture to the jackfruit in the pan and stir to combine.
Jackfruit Mixiote Madre Tacos
Canola, rice bran, or other neutral oil, for frying
1 small onion, thinly sliced, rings broken up
8 corn tortillas, warmed
2 cups Jackfruit Mixiote
2 cups Quick-Pickled Cabbage (recipe in cookbook) or plain cabbage
1⁄2 cup Cashew Crema (recipe in cookbook) or sauce of choice
1⁄2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
1. Line a plate with paper towels.
2. In a large nonstick or cast-iron pan over medium-high heat, heat about ½ inch of oil to 350°F.
3. Add the onions and fry just until golden, 1 to 2 minutes.
4. Transfer to the paper towel-lined plate to drain.
5. Fill each tortilla with some of the jackfruit and top with cabbage and crispy onions.
6. Garnish with sauce and cilantro and serve!
Excerpted from THE GRACIAS MADRE COOKBOOK, by Gracias Madre with Rachel Holtzman, published by Avery, an imprint of Penguin Publishing Group, a division of Penguin Random House, LLC. Copyright © 2022 by Love Serve Remember LLC.
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