Don’t these tortilla bowls look great? They’re fun, but so easy to make. I’ve filled them with a salad of chipotle black beans, and barbecued corn, potatoes, mango and peppers.
I love it when the weather brightens up and barbecue season begins!
A barbecue isn’t just for cooking meat or veggie burgers. I’ve used it to cook potato skewers with dip and even barbecued cucumbers. Undoubtedly the strangest things I’ve ever barbecued was cake. The hot grill chars the dense cake and caramelises the sugar. It’s really quite special.
My most memorable barbecue was in Sydney. We were with friends and they fired up the barbecue for breakfast! It was such a treat and I loved the way the smokey flavour imparted it all. They had a flat part for eggs and cooked the bacon and sausages plus veggie sausages for me.
I also had amazing barbecues when we lived on a boat. In the mornings we would spontaneously set sail and then pull over at a pretty spot for a picnic. I loved that we didn’t have to plan anything or pack. Just set off: destination unknown.
Mexican Grilled Chipotle Salad in Tortilla Bowls
This Mexican Grilled Chipotle Salad has a lovely smokey spicy flavour that’s balanced against the creamy sweetcorn and sweet mango. The salad is full of tastes and textures. It’s easy to make, even though there are quite a few components. I love breaking off pieces of the tortilla bowl and using it to scoop out the salad.
The tortilla shells can be made in advance, so you could use them as edible dishes for a picnic barbecue! You can make the tortilla bowls on the barbecue by draping the tortillas over empty clean tin cans. Use tongs and be careful as the can will get very hot.
My top 5 barbecue tips for cooking on coal:
- Ensure the coals are grey before you start cooking.
- Sear food in the centre of the barbecue where it’s hottest, then move the food to the outer edges so it cooks without burning.
- Liven up your food with marinades, herb oils, glazes, rubs and flavoured butters.
- Rub a little cooking oil on a cloth or paper towel with oil on the grill grate before cooking so food doesn’t stick.
- Don’t forget the vegetables. Skewers of veg brushed with herb-infused oil are a dream when barbecued.
There’s nothing sadder than a beige barbecue, so whip up a few colourful salads and sides before you start cooking. I love that this Mexican grilled salad as a main meal, but you could also use it as a barbecue side dish. Use large flour tortillas to make your tortilla bowl and guests can all share.
Don’t forget the cocktails. My cucumber gin and tonic or carrot moscow mule are great with barbecues. I’d also serve these tortilla bowls of salad with some yummy corn fritters. For an extra taste of Latin America, I’d definitely serve the tortilla salad with these Cuban black beans. They’re easy to make and rich with bold flavours to transport you to Old Havana. Mexican salad, Cuban beans… you just need a bottle of ice cold lager, sun in the sky and a big group of friends and you’re golden.
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Take your barbecue up a level with this easy and tasty Mexican tortilla bowl salad. Grill the veggies then make the simple tortilla bowl to fill.
- 1 muffin tray
- 2 tsp vegetable oil or cooking oil spray
- 6 small soft tortilla wraps
- 2 cobs of corn I used frozen
- 10 new potatoes
- 1 red pepper cut into thick chunks
- Large handful of mango chunks I used frozen and defrosted
- 12 cherry tomatoes
- 4 tbsp rapeseed or vegetable oil divided
- ¼ tsp dried oregano
- ⅛ tsp ground cumin
- 1 can black beans (400g/15oz can), drained and rinsed
- 1 tsp chipotle paste
- 1 ripe avocado
- Juice of ½ a lime
- 125 g plain yogurt (or vegan yogurt)
- ½ tsp chipotle paste
- 2 tbsp coriander (cilantro) finely chopped
- 1 tsp fresh lime juice
- Pinch of sea salt
- Handful coriander cilantro leaves
- Preheat the oven to 425F, and remove one of the oven racks, and position the one at lower-middle (this is to ensure there’s room for the tortillas without touching a rack above them).
- Place the flat tortillas into the oven for a few seconds to warm enough to be flexible. Don’t let them get crispy.
- Brush both sides of each tortilla lightly with oil (or use oil spray), then drape between the upturned muffin cups and lightly press the edges down to form them into a bowl shape. You may need to do this in two batches.
- Place in the oven and cook for 5-10 minutes until it begins to crisp up and turn slightly golden.
- Carefully remove from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool.
- Boil the potatoes for and corn a few minutes until just cooked through. Drain and rinse under cold water.
- Thread the red pepper, mango and cherry tomatoes onto skewers. Thread the cooled potatoes onto skewers.
- Mix 3 tablespoons of the oil with oregano and cumin and brush over the corn, potatoes and skewers.
- Place onto a hot griddle pan or barbecue and cook for 10-15 minutes until seared, turning occasionally.
- While the vegetables are cooking, heat a frying pan on medium. Add the black beans, chipotle paste and 2 tbsp of water. Stir gently, so the beans don’t break up, and heat gently.
- Cut the avocado into thick slices and sprinkle it with the lime juice. Add to the griddle pan and sear for a few minutes on each side.
- Mix all ingredients well in a bowl. Taste and add more chipotle paste if you like it hot.
- Pile the tortilla bowls with the grilled vegetables, chipotle beans and salad leaves. Drizzle with the chipotle sauce and coriander (cilantro) and serve immediately.
Frozen Foods for the Barbecue
Frozen foods make it easy to have a spontaneous barbecue, so I was delighted when Iceland Foods challenged me to come up with a recipe on that theme. My initial thought was to grill a salad! It’s great that you can barbecue all the components and then bring them together into something different.
I keep a stash of veggie sausages and frozen vegetables in the freezer, so when the sun shines, we can cook on the coals without having to rush out to the shops. Frozen corn is particulate favourite for barbecues. I also like how frozen vegetables lock in flavours and are frozen at their peak. Plus, it helps to reduce food waste, since if the weather doesn’t play ball, you don’t have a wasted barbecue.
Disclosure: This recipe for Grilled Chipotle Salad in Tortilla Bowls was commissioned by Iceland Foods. All opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that make it possible for me to write Veggie Desserts – Healthy Food and Lifestyle.