Chances are when you grab a quick taco from your favorite food truck it comes with all the traditional trimmings: meat or fish, shredded lettuce, red cabbage, tomato, cheese, some guacamole, sour cream, hot sauce and a wedge of lime. Pair with a side of refried beans and cilantro rice and you’re on your way to taco heaven.

chef ivy stark dos caminos tacosBut the humble taco can be the framework for culinary magic.

Enter Chef Ivy Stark of famed eatery Dos Caminos New York. She has created some updated interpretations of the taco that will leave your taste buds tingling. Her latest book Dos Caminos Tacos: 100 Recipes for Everyone’s Favorite Mexican Street Food by Ivy Stark and Joanna Pruess (Countryman Press; September 21, 2015) has some amazing taco recipes that I’ve never seen anywhere else.




Here are five fusion tacos that will blow your mind:

dos caminos tacosGrilled Arab-Style Tacos with Jalapeno Yogurt

The Arab-style taco is the most popular fast food in Puebla, Mexico. Introduced in 1933, it borrows from the way Middle Eastern street food is prepared but adds the Mexican ingredient of pork, which is forbidden in Muslim culture. The taco features roasted pork wrapped in a Middle Eastern flatbread paired with salt, lime juice and salsa to taste. Stark adds her own amazing addition to the mix with a spicy and creamy jalapeno yogurt.

Fried Green Tomatillo Tacos with Green Olives and Chipotle Remoulade

Anyone who loves fried green tomatoes needs to try this immediately! The tomatillo is from the nightshade family and is related to tomatoes. It’s meatier than a tomato, tart and light green in color. You’ll often find it in salsa verde paired with tortilla chips at your favorite Mexican restaurant. The green olives lend a bitter bite alongside the smoky flavor of the chipotle.

Matzo Tortillas

In all my days as a taco eater I’ve never come across a matzo tortilla—it’s brilliant! Stark offers up a chicken liver pate for the insides of the taco that is just as surprising. The matzo recipe calls for three simple ingredients and it will be a hit with your kosher friends (especially during Passover!) or anyone looking to try something new.

Mexican Hot Dog Tacos

Apparently, when you live on the East Coast of the United States you miss out on a popular street food that is all over Los Angeles and comes from Northern Mexico. The “dogo” is the street term of endearment for hot dogs in Mexico and although they are often duplicated, the best come from the motherland. These incredible bacon-wrapped delights are served up in Stark’s book and I have to say, the way that crispy bacon hugs the hotdog makes my mouth water.

Dark Chocolate Tacos with Sour Cherries (main image)

Move over, choco-taco, you’re no match for dark chocolate and cherries! I couldn’t resist including a dessert taco to this list. The richness of the dark chocolate and the sour cherries is a classic combination, but when you add a dessert taco to the mix that’s covered in chocolate and rolled in nuts, it’s a crunchy sweet ending to your meal that’s anything but ordinary. Also, there’s tequila in the recipe—how could you go wrong?

Grilled Arab-Style Tacos with Jalapeno Yogurt


Credit: SONY DSC

Yield: 8 tacos

16 ounces Greek yogurt

Juice of 5 limes

6 cloves garlic

1 bunch flat-leaf parsley

Leaves from 1 sprig mint

Leaves from 1 sprig thyme

1 tablespoon dried oregano, preferably Mexican

1 teaspoon ground cumin

¼ cup olive oil

2 pounds pork loin, cut into slices

8 thick flour tortillas or 6-inch pita breads

Jalapeño Yogurt (recipe below)

  • In the jar of an electric blender, combine the yogurt, lime juice, garlic, parsley, mint, thyme, oregano, cumin, and olive oil. Puree until smooth. Put the pork in a flat, non-reactive container, pour on the marinade, and refrigerate overnight or for at least 8 hours.
  • Prepare the Jalapeño Yogurt.
  • Heat a barbecue to medium or heat a large cast-iron skillet over
    medium-high heat.
  • Remove the pork from the marinade, place directly on the grill without blotting and cook to medium, about 4 or 5 minutes each side, turning once. Serve wrapped in thick tortillas drizzled with Jalapeño Yogurt.

Jalapeño Yogurt

1 cup Greek yogurt

2–3 seeded jalapeños, minced

2 cloves garlic, minced

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh cilantro

1 teaspoon freshly grated ginger

1 teaspoon ground coriander

1 teaspoon ground cumin

Fine sea salt and freshly ground
black pepper

In a small bowl, whisk together the yogurt, jalapeños, garlic, cilantro, ginger, coriander, and cumin. Season with salt and black pepper to taste.