Taco Tuesday with Craigwood


  • Fresh Tortillas
  • Chorizo Con Papas
  • Frijoles Refritos
  • Salsa Verde

Additional Dishes you might like to incorporate into taco night:

  • Shredded Chicken
  • Charred Cucumber Salad with Red Chile and Lime
  • Curtido
  • Salsa Roja
  • Sikil Pak
  • Avocado Crema

Chorizo Con Papas


  • 1 lb chorizo sausage
  • 2 lb. medium red-skinned potatoes, peeled and cut into 1" pieces
  • 13 cup canola oil
  • 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Cut potatoes into 1 cm dice.  Heat oil in a 12″ skillet over medium-high heat. Cook potatoes and onion until softened and potatoes are cooked most of the way.  Add prepared chorizo, and cook, stirring to break up large chunks, until browned and fat renders, about 8 minutes.  

Refried Beans


  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon ancho chili powder, or other chili powder
  • 1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans, preferably low-sodium, drained and rinsed
  • 2/3 cup vegetable broth, plus more if needed
  • Salt and pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves


Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in the garlic and chili powder and cook for 1 minute more. Stir in the beans and chicken broth and cook until the beans are warmed through, about 5 minutes. Mash the beans coarsely with the back of a wooden spoon, adding more vegetable broth to moisten, if needed. Season with salt and pepper, to taste. Stir in the cilantro.

Shredded Chicken


  • 2 pounds boneless chicken thighs
  • 1 large white onion, peeled and quartered
  • 5 cloves garlic, peeled and lightly crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 1 ancho or other mild dried chili, optional
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Combine all ingredients in a saucepan and add water to cover. Turn heat to high, bring to a boil, and skim any foam that comes to the surface. Partially cover and adjust heat so mixture simmers steadily. Cook until meat is very tender, about 30 minutes. Remove from liquid and cool.

Shred meat with fingers. Taste and adjust seasonings.

Salsa Roja (Red Salsa)


  • 3 medium tomatoes, cored and chopped (or 1 15-ounce can of whole tomatoes)

  • ¼ cup onion, chopped

  • 1 clove garlic, chopped

  • 1 small jalapeño pepper, seeded and chopped

  • ¼ cup cilantro, chopped

  • 1 teaspoons dried oregano

  • 2 teaspoons salt

  • ½ to ¾ cup water


Add everything except the water to a blender. Add ½ cup of water and blend until smooth. You want the salsa to be pretty thin so add more water as needed.

Transfer the salsa to a saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Cook for 7-10 minutes until the salsa has thickened slightly. Taste and adjust seasonings as necessary. Remove from the heat and allow to cool to room temperature.

Transfer to a jar and serve immediately or refrigerate for up to 1 week.



  • 1/2 head green cabbage, cored and shredded
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 quart boiling water
  • 3 green onions, or ½ small onion, very thinly sliced minced
  • 1 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano
  • salt to taste


Combine the cabbage and carrot in a large bowl and pour the boiling water over the mixture. Allow the mixture to steep for 5 minutes; drain well. Return the cabbage and carrots to the bowl. Mix in the green onion, vinegar, 1/2 cup of water, and oregano. Toss until all ingredients are combined. Chill for 20 minutes before serving.

Charred Cucumber Salad with Red Chile and Lime


  • 1 ½ pounds cucumbers (probably 3-4)
  • 3-4 tablespoons lime juice
  • ½ teaspoon chile flakes
  • ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • ¼ cup thinly sliced white onion or 3 stalks thinly sliced green onion
  • ½ cup chopped cilantro
  • salt to taste


Char the cucumbers by lying them on the open gas flame and turning them almost constantly until the skin is blackened a little on all sides, about 4 minutes.  Alternately, place under the broiler as close to the element as possible and turn every few minutes.  Let the cucumbers cool, then split each one into half lengthwise and slice into ¼ inch thick half moons.  Place cucumber into a bowl with the rest of the ingredients and toss to combine.  Taste ad season with salt, let stand a few minutes to let flavours combine and serve.

Sikil Pak


  • 1 plum tomato
  • 1 two inch stick canela (Mexican cinnamon)
  • 2 cups pumpkin seeds
  • 1 habanero chili
  • 3 garlic cloves, skin on
  • 1 orange
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup cilantro, chopped


Preheat the broiler, roast tomato, garlic and habanero on baking sheet until blackened in spots, about 7 minutes.  Turn it over and continue to blacken another 7 minutes.  Set aside to cool to room temperature, and peel garlic. 

Heat a large skillet over medium heat, and toast canela until fragrant.  Remove from heat and set aside. Grind into a powder in the food processor or blender.

Reheat the skillet, and toast the pumpkin seeds until they start to puff up and turn brown, shaking the pan constantly to prevent seeds burning.  Remove from heat and transfer to the bowl of a food processor.  Grind the pumpkin seeds until a powder forms and they begin to stick to the side of the food processor.  

Add roasted tomato, garlic, onion, and half of the habanero to the bowl of the food processor with the ground eppeitas.  Cut the orange in half and squeeze into the food processor.  Add ground canela, salt and cilantro, along with ¾ cup of water,  pulse the food processor until mixture reaches a course puree.

Avocado Crema


  • 1 large ripe avocado
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper


Slice the avocado in half and remove the pit. Scoop the flesh into a food processor and add the yogurt, lime juice and a big pinch of salt and pepper. Blend until smooth.


Craigwood Youth Services is a registered, non-profit organization dedicated to serving the mental health needs of Ontario youth and their families for more than 60 years. Our programs are staffed and managed by a team of more than 100 mental health and child care professionals including Master’s-level clinicians, youth workers, teachers, trainers and administrative staff.


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