Guerrilla Tacos by Wesley Avila

Guerrilla Tacos: Recipes from the Streets of L.A. by Wes Avila draws on his Mexican heritage as well as his time in the kitchens of some of the world's best restaurants to create taco perfection in this his debut book.

Los Angeles is known for its wealth of taco trucks and somehow Avila's Guerrilla Tacos has managed to win almost every accolade there is, from being crowned Best Taco Truck by LA Weekly to being called one of the best things to eat in Los Angeles by LA Times food critic Jonathan Gold.

The native Angeleno's approach stands out in a crowded field because it's unique; the 50 base recipes in this book are grounded in authenticity but never tied down to tradition. He uses ingredients like kurobata sausage and sea urchin, but his bestselling taco is made from the humble sweet potato. From basic building blocks to how to balance flavor and texture, with comic-inspired illustrations and stories throughout, Guerrilla Tacos is the final word on tacos from the streets of L.A.

Special thanks to Ten Speed Press for sharing the Fried potato taquito with our members today and for providing one copy of this book in our contest below (US only). Eat Your Books is providing an additional copy to members worldwide. 

Fried potato taquito
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I can eat, like, six of these. You can make these and leave them in the fridge and eat them the next day. Just like a party snack-my version of the Cielito Lindo fried beef taquito. Probably my oldest memory of eating taquitos in my life is from Cielito Lindo. It's an L.A. institution, on the corner of Cesar Chavez and Alameda at the entrance to Olvera Street. I love that place. They still make my favorite taquito. If somebody asked me what my favorite taco in L.A. is, I'd say that.

Avocado-tomatillo salsa

  • 1 pound tomatillos (preferably tomatillos milperos, the small purple-colored ones about the size of a quarter), husked and rinsed
  • 2 avocados, pitted and peeled
  • 4 serrano chiles, stemmed
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled
  • 1 bunch of cilantro (reserve a few sprigs for garnishing the tacos), ends torn off (grab the bunch about 3 inches above the end of the stem and twist like you're ringing a towel, and discard the ends)
  • Kosher salt
  • 4 to 6 limes

 

  • 4 pounds any starchy potato, such as Yukon golds or russets
  • 11⁄2 pounds unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 large (6-inch) corn tortillas, warmed (see page 29)
  • 1⁄4 cup lard
  • Sea salt
  • 2 cups rough-cut or grated aged cheddar cheese

To make the avocado-tomatillo salsa: In a food processor, combine the tomatillos, avocados, serranos, garlic, and cilantro and season with salt. Juice the limes on top. Cover the processor and hit it three or four times-pop, pop, pop-then let it blend a while. You'll start to see the seeds but keep it chunky. Taste it and season with more salt. Set aside.

Bring a big pot of salty water to a simmer. Throw in the potatoes and cook them thoroughly, about 17 minutes. Actually, you kind of want to overcook them. When they're super-soft, drain the potatoes in a colander. When the potatoes are cool, use a paring knife to peel them. Place the peeled potatoes in a big bowl and mash them roughly-you want to keep some of that texture and chunkiness. Add the butter and season with kosher salt and pepper.

Add 3 tablespoons potatoes to each of the tortillas and roll them into taquitos about 11⁄2 inches in diameter.

In a 12-inch cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat, melt the lard. Add the taquitos and cook until golden brown, 4 to 6 minutes. Place the taquitos on a wire rack to cool and immediately season with sea salt. When the taquitos are cool enough to eat, garnish them with a good portion of salsa and cheddar on top. Serve immediately.

Reprinted with permission from Guerrilla Tacos, copyright © 2017 by Wes Avila, with Richard Parks III. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.  Photographs copyright © 2017 by Dylan James Ho and Jeni Afuso Illustrations copyright © 2017 by Michael Hirshon

The publisher is offering one copy of this book to EYB Members in the US and EYB is providing one copy worldwide. One of the entry options is to answer the following question in the comments section of this blog post.

Which recipe in the index would you try first?

Please note that you must be logged into the Rafflecopter contest before posting or your entry won't be counted. For more information on this process, please see our step-by-step help post. Be sure to check your spam filters to receive our email notifications. Prizes can take up to 6 weeks to arrive from the publishers. If you are not already a Member, you can join at no cost. The contest ends at midnight on April 25th, 2018.

98 Comments

  • MadMom  on  3/19/2018 at 7:11 PM

    Those taquitos sound wonderful! Combining two of my favorite things - avocados and potatoes - I'm in heaven!

  • rchesser  on  3/19/2018 at 7:20 PM

    Fried potato taquito

  • heyjude  on  3/19/2018 at 7:32 PM

    Lobster Taco

  • BridgetL  on  3/19/2018 at 7:35 PM

    Golden Beet Poke Tostada

  • lgroom  on  3/19/2018 at 7:44 PM

    Carnitas

  • ejsimpson  on  3/19/2018 at 8:02 PM

    Shrimp and chorizo taco

  • lauriesk  on  3/19/2018 at 8:20 PM

    I would try the sweet potato taco recipe.

  • Puguppy  on  3/19/2018 at 8:29 PM

    Shrimp and chorizo tacos

  • lcomer  on  3/19/2018 at 8:47 PM

    Breakfast burrito. Always looking for something to go for the husband.

  • bettinab  on  3/19/2018 at 9:49 PM

    Eggplant taco

  • cjross  on  3/19/2018 at 11:09 PM

    Roasted pumpkin taco!

  • Joyceeong  on  3/20/2018 at 12:15 AM

    Eggplant taco

  • Angryyew  on  3/20/2018 at 2:31 AM

    roasted pumpkin taco

  • vickster  on  3/20/2018 at 7:11 AM

    pork sparerib taco

  • ravensfan  on  3/20/2018 at 7:17 AM

    Pork cracklings

  • lapsapchung  on  3/20/2018 at 9:02 AM

    Green bean and egg tacos

  • sarahawker  on  3/20/2018 at 9:27 AM

    Shrimp and chorizo taco

  • Maefleur  on  3/20/2018 at 10:01 AM

    Yep! Shrimp and chorizo tacos!

  • kmn4  on  3/20/2018 at 10:37 AM

    Carnitas

  • lean1  on  3/20/2018 at 11:48 AM

    Eggplant Taco sounds terrific!

  • shandrap  on  3/20/2018 at 1:01 PM

    The green bean and egg tacos recipe sounds like a healthy and money saving option

  • jmay42066  on  3/20/2018 at 6:23 PM

    Carnitas

  • kitchen_chick  on  3/20/2018 at 7:28 PM

  • kitchen_chick  on  3/20/2018 at 7:30 PM

    Shrimp and chorizo tacos

  • Steben  on  3/20/2018 at 9:57 PM

    Oxtail taco

  • DarcyVaughn  on  3/21/2018 at 12:46 AM

    albondigas

  • antpantsii  on  3/21/2018 at 6:51 AM

    Oxtail taco

  • Singleta417  on  3/21/2018 at 9:19 AM

    Baja taco - Little Saigon version

  • robynsanyal  on  3/21/2018 at 9:31 AM

    Pozole

  • infotrop  on  3/21/2018 at 1:05 PM

    Cauliflower taco: cauliflower, dates, olives, pine nuts all in a taco? gotta try that.

  • EmilyR  on  3/21/2018 at 3:08 PM

    eggplant taco

  • amandabeck  on  3/22/2018 at 5:43 AM

    chile colorado!

  • sgump  on  3/22/2018 at 11:27 AM

    Always seems to be a lot of work (chopping, mainly), but I'd try the pozole.

  • munki  on  3/22/2018 at 2:34 PM

    Crab and spigarello tostada

  • Siegal  on  3/23/2018 at 9:55 AM

    Roasted pumpkin taco sounds great

  • RachLFinn  on  3/23/2018 at 11:49 AM

    Calamari taco for sure.

  • trudys_person  on  3/23/2018 at 10:35 PM

    Roasted Pumpkin Taco!

  • sugo  on  3/24/2018 at 1:42 AM

    Sweet potato taco (Tacos de papa dorados)

  • mpdeb98  on  3/24/2018 at 9:07 AM

    Pork sparerib taco

  • JenJoLa  on  3/24/2018 at 3:43 PM

    Roasted pumpkin taco

  • Karla123  on  3/24/2018 at 5:26 PM

    Cauliflower taco... love the idea of using cauliflower as "taco meat."

  • Ishtar  on  3/24/2018 at 5:55 PM

    Grilled shrimp taco

  • choppergirl  on  3/25/2018 at 7:59 AM

    Fried potato taquito

  • Uhmandanicole  on  3/26/2018 at 8:27 AM

    Razor clams à la plancha

  • LaurenE  on  3/26/2018 at 4:46 PM

    Breakfast burrito

  • shaz4  on  3/28/2018 at 6:21 PM

    Golden beet poke tostada - so unusual!

  • AnnaZed  on  3/28/2018 at 10:42 PM

    Fried Baja taco

  • t.t  on  3/29/2018 at 2:26 AM

    Carnitas

  • Dannausc  on  3/30/2018 at 5:56 PM

    breakfast burrito!

  • circ2000  on  3/30/2018 at 6:34 PM

    Pork Sparerib Tacos!!

  • lindaeatsherbooks  on  3/30/2018 at 8:40 PM

    I want to try make the Sunchoke taco.

  • Scotsman61  on  3/30/2018 at 8:45 PM

    Fried potato taquito

  • finnsmom64  on  3/31/2018 at 10:25 AM

    shishito taco w poached egg

  • kennethjohngilmour  on  3/31/2018 at 2:47 PM

    would like to try pozole so would start with the recipe found on page 94

  • amyjay  on  4/1/2018 at 2:18 PM

    fried potato taquito

  • Shelley.b  on  4/1/2018 at 3:15 PM

    Eggplant tacos

  • janv  on  4/1/2018 at 5:42 PM

    Chilaquiles torta

  • Laura1  on  4/1/2018 at 6:13 PM

    Sweet potato tacos

  • lisatrev  on  4/1/2018 at 10:32 PM

    Albondigas

  • stitchan  on  4/2/2018 at 8:52 AM

    Mushroom escabeche taco

  • Jenamarie  on  4/2/2018 at 9:16 AM

    Pig head taco with lentils and fried quail egg - YUM

  • love2chow  on  4/2/2018 at 11:06 AM

    Sweet potato taco (Tacos de papa dorados) Baja taco - Little Saigon version Eggplant taco (page 114)

  • ennsee  on  4/2/2018 at 4:08 PM

    I would make the Brisket taco first. Sounds so good!

  • sdg8trgrl  on  4/2/2018 at 5:46 PM

    Waffles

  • amferrer  on  4/3/2018 at 12:20 PM

    Fried Baja taco

  • artthecat  on  4/3/2018 at 3:40 PM

    Chili Colorado

  • verorenee  on  4/3/2018 at 3:48 PM

    carnitas

  • Teruska  on  4/3/2018 at 6:17 PM

    The breakfast burrito grabbed me first. I will continue through the index, because, so far, YUM!

  • FireRunner2379  on  4/4/2018 at 3:02 PM

    The Sweet Potato Taco and Lobster Taco sound really good!

  • GillB  on  4/4/2018 at 11:25 PM

    Cauliflower tacos sound interesting

  • topdawg11  on  4/5/2018 at 10:50 AM

    Oxtail taco

  • SheilaS  on  4/6/2018 at 11:51 AM

    I borrowed this book from the library and would love to own it! I'd try the lobster taco for sure!

  • ktwalla  on  4/7/2018 at 8:03 PM

    Shrimp and Chorizo Tacos

  • Alanr  on  4/7/2018 at 8:23 PM

    Razor clam tostadas. Razor clam recipes are always welcome!

  • Werepanda  on  4/8/2018 at 2:32 AM

    Eggplant taco, because I just adore eggplants and never have enough :D

  • luccio  on  4/8/2018 at 2:57 AM

    Tacos de papa dorados sound good to me!

  • tamt  on  4/8/2018 at 3:27 AM

    Mushroom taco

  • Carolyn99  on  4/8/2018 at 4:48 AM

    Octopus and chorizo taco.

  • jc214a  on  4/8/2018 at 7:58 AM

    Breakfast Burrito.

  • PeavineBlues  on  4/8/2018 at 9:34 AM

    Fried Oyster Taco

  • RickPearson54  on  4/8/2018 at 9:40 AM

    Carnitas

  • bnnk  on  4/8/2018 at 11:15 AM

    I would love to make the brisket tacos!

  • jd5761  on  4/8/2018 at 6:12 PM

    Roasted pumpkin taco for me

  • prairieschooner1  on  4/9/2018 at 12:04 AM

    potato taquitto

  • Agatha  on  4/9/2018 at 1:39 AM

    Albondigas!

  • GregH  on  4/10/2018 at 6:08 PM

    Chubbs taco

  • TheNoviceLife  on  4/11/2018 at 7:32 AM

    Would love to try the taquitos recipe!

  • shellee  on  4/15/2018 at 9:34 AM

    Ajo blanco

  • lisambb  on  4/15/2018 at 11:15 AM

    Probably the taquitos but I bet I’ll want to make everything.

  • rachael_mc  on  4/15/2018 at 6:45 PM

    Razor clams à la plancha

  • nesshawk  on  4/16/2018 at 8:01 PM

    Razor clam ANYTHING would be my first choice, but since impossible to come by in my neck of the woods, I would go with Oxtail Tacos.

  • Julia  on  4/17/2018 at 4:21 PM

    Brisket taco

  • VeryVigario  on  4/17/2018 at 10:43 PM

    Grouper taco!

  • cake17uk  on  4/18/2018 at 3:53 PM

    I'd try Chicken adobo taco ,

  • orchidlady01  on  4/21/2018 at 3:45 AM

    Grilled shrimp taco

  • littleminxgirl  on  4/23/2018 at 6:50 AM

    I've made a few of these as I'm from southern California.. but the grouper taco sounds interesting

  • lebarron2001  on  4/25/2018 at 9:34 AM

    Grilled Shrimp Tacos

  • emmpower  on  4/25/2018 at 10:21 PM

    Definitely the octopus and chorizo tacos, they sound delicious!

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