honey chipotle salmon tacos
from guest author Carolina Gelen
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some personal news!
George Cashel Hodgin was born on Friday! We brought Cash home yesterday and he is already fitting in perfectly with my household of men — burping, farting, pooping, and eating all day long. The good news about having three boys? Job security! I have a built in gang of demanding eaters and recipe testers for life.
With that: I'm announcing a very special maternity leave recipe series. As the saying goes, it takes a village, and I have gathered an incredible group of award-winning and best-selling and you-name-it women to bring you some fabulous complete-meal recipes over the next several weeks. You'll be cooking delicious honey chipotle salmon tacos — I'll be eating cheerios in my adult diapers while breastfeeding my newest chunky baby boy.
I can't wait for you all to meet these awesome women and improve your cooking skills by learning from so many different backgrounds and styles over the next few weeks.
First up, Carolina Gelen!
From Caro: I’m so excited to introduce the first of my MATERNITY LEAVE GUEST AUTHORS — Carolina Gelen! I’ve followed her on Instagram for about a year now and she is one of the only recipe developers with content that makes me, a jaded recipe developer, say “woah, I want to make that.” She is fabulously creative in the kitchen and the recipe she’s sharing with us today looks absolutely divine. You’re going to freak out over how EASY IT IS.
From Carolina: You may have seen me on social media, TV, Food52, or freelancing at NYT Cooking, but don't know much about me. I’m from Transylvania, Romania, and immigrated to the U.S. in 2021, pursuing my passion for cooking. I’ve worked in five-star restaurants and casual bakeries, but the best experience was growing up in my mother’s kitchen.
I speak five languages, but my favorite way to communicate is through the universal language of food. I translate food to be more approachable and accessible for the everyday cook. I didn't grow up with a lot, so I’ve always loved thrifting and finding a good sale. That also shapes my approach to cooking: I try to make most of my recipes as affordable as possible, and that is what my SCRAPS newsletter is about. Every two weeks I will send an exclusive recipe to your inbox. Subscribe to get full access to the newsletter and website.
honey chipotle salmon tacos
These chipotle salmon tacos are a treasured recipe in my weekly dinner rotation and I'm so excited to share them with you today! It's one of those memorable, flavor-packed recipes that meets all my requirements for a weeknight dinner:
Caro challenged me to share a dinner recipe that takes less than an hour to make. How about less than 30 minutes? This recipe requires very minimal effort for maximum flavor and satisfaction. The process goes something like this: Make the marinade, roast the salmon, chop a few fruits and veggies for the pico de gallo while the salmon is roasting, warm up the tortillas, and set the table with any remaining toppings of choice.
it’s versatile and adaptable
One of my biggest goals when developing recipes is to equip you with the necessary substitutions to make a dish your own. If a recipe sounds delicious, but you’re not the biggest fan of a couple of ingredients used to make the dish, that shouldn’t stop you from giving it a try. Challenge yourself to make that recipe your own by substituting those ingredients with something you might already have in your pantry. Likewise, what if you really want to make a recipe, but are missing a few easy-to-swap ingredients — should you postpone it for next week? Not at all! Make it work with ingredients you can already find in your kitchen.
From Caro: OK, I just had to pop in here — how amazing is this?? Carolina is already a What To Cooker and she didn’t even know it. We love substitutions!! She provided her own subs for every ingredient in her recipe without me even asking! Yay Carolina, we love Carolina! Find them in the notes and substitutions section below the recipe, as always.
Living for most of my life in a small town in Romania taught me to take the matter into my own hands when it came to recreating my favorite authors’ recipes. Not having access to many ingredients considered mundane in an American grocery store made me a better cook, and I’m very grateful for that.
it’s actually easy to make
I genuinely believe this recipe is hard to mess up, so even if you’ve never cooked a day in your life and this is the first thing you decide to make, you should be good. The only mistake you could make is forgetting about the salmon in the oven while taking a shower or something. My biggest tip when it comes to using your oven is to always keep an eye on whatever is going on in there. Our ovens are all different, so make sure you get to know yours! I might call for 400°F, but your oven’s 400°F might be 435°F, or 375°F. Unless you have an oven thermometer you can trust (here’s America’s Test Kitchen’s fave), get to know your oven, get to know when it’s overheating, and learn to trust your intuition. Don’t just blindly follow a recipe, and always check on your roasted or baked goods every now and then.
This recipe is not only delicious, but also satiating. There’s nothing worse than munching through your pantry because dinner wasn’t filling enough.
honey chipotle salmon tacos
Serves 2 to 3 on its own, or 4 with a side dish
From Caro: As a reminder: I am a huge believer that tacos require no side dish! Everything you need is right in the taco!
Cook time: 25-30 minutes
A deep baking dish (like this one!) that your skewers can reach across to create a rotisserie roaster of sorts for the salmon! An 8x8-inch baking dish should do the trick — but poke around your cabinets and see what you can find! If you come up empty-handed, just use a regular sheet pan and flip them halfway through.
Blender, food processor, or mortar and pestle
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