Chef Hugo Ortega's Chapulines Tacos

Pan-sautéed grasshoppers served with guacamole, chipotle-tomatillo salsa and tortillas

Photography By Paula Murphy | May 16, 2018

Ingredients

Chapulines
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ ounce dehydrated grasshoppers
  • ½ ounce finely diced white onion
  • 1 tablespoon Mojo de Ajo (recipe follows)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro Guacamole, to taste (recipe follows) Tomatillo-Chipotle Salsa, to taste (recipe follows)
  • 3 tortillas (Hugo’s makes theirs fresh in-house)
Mojo de Ajo
  • ½ cup whole garlic cloves
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 3 chipotle peppers, seeded and cut into strips
Tomatillo-Chipotle Salsa
  • 12 tomatillos, husked and boiled for 5 minutes and drained
  • ½ onion, charred
  • 3 garlic cloves, charred
  • 3 guajillos, deveined and seeded, soaked in warm water for 10 minutes and drained
  • 2 chipotle peppers, seeded pinch salt
Guacamole
  • 6 tomatillos
  • ½ bunch fresh cilantro
  • ¼ purple onion, diced
  • 2 serrano peppers
  • 4 avocados, mashed
  • 2 roma tomatoes, diced
  • ½ teaspoon olive oil
  • juice of 1 lime
  • salt & pepper to taste

Preparation

Chapulines

Heat a pan and add olive oil. Once hot, add next 4 ingredients and sauté briefly for 10 or 15 minutes until thoroughly heated, but without burning. Remove from heat and serve in a small bowl and accompany with Guacamole, Tomatillo-Chipotle Salsa and small tortillas.

Mojo de Ajo

Pulse garlic cloves in food processor until you have small pieces, but not puréed. In thickbottomed, non-aluminum pot, place oil and garlic cloves. Simmer for 20–30 minutes, until garlic is golden brown (do not burn). Take off heat and add the chipotle strips. We always keep this around. (Hugo’s sautés with this oil on many dishes.)

Tomatillo-Chipotle Salsa

Blend until smooth. Makes about 2 cups.

Guacamole

Juice the tomatillos, onions, cilantro and serrano pepper; save the pulp and discard the juice. In a medium bowl, mix together the pulp, avocado, tomatoes, olive oil and lime juice; stir well to incorporate. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Ingredients

Chapulines
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ ounce dehydrated grasshoppers
  • ½ ounce finely diced white onion
  • 1 tablespoon Mojo de Ajo (recipe follows)
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro Guacamole, to taste (recipe follows) Tomatillo-Chipotle Salsa, to taste (recipe follows)
  • 3 tortillas (Hugo’s makes theirs fresh in-house)
Mojo de Ajo
  • ½ cup whole garlic cloves
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 3 chipotle peppers, seeded and cut into strips
Tomatillo-Chipotle Salsa
  • 12 tomatillos, husked and boiled for 5 minutes and drained
  • ½ onion, charred
  • 3 garlic cloves, charred
  • 3 guajillos, deveined and seeded, soaked in warm water for 10 minutes and drained
  • 2 chipotle peppers, seeded pinch salt
Guacamole
  • 6 tomatillos
  • ½ bunch fresh cilantro
  • ¼ purple onion, diced
  • 2 serrano peppers
  • 4 avocados, mashed
  • 2 roma tomatoes, diced
  • ½ teaspoon olive oil
  • juice of 1 lime
  • salt & pepper to taste