Spicy Bison Tacos with Brussels Sprout Slaw and Pickled Onions

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 8 hr 55 min (includes pickling time)
  • Active: 55 min
  • Yield: 8 to 12 servings
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Pickled Red Onions and Fennel:

2 tablespoons honey

Kosher salt 

1 cup sherry vinegar 

2 teaspoon black peppercorns 

1 red onion, thinly sliced 

1/2 bulb fennel, thinly sliced 

Brussels Sprout Slaw with Queso Fresco:

2/3 cup Mexican crema

1/3 cup mayonnaise 

1 teaspoon chipotle in adobo puree 

Zest and juice of 1 lime 

Kosher salt 

5 cups shredded Brussels sprouts 

1 cup fresh cilantro leaves, roughly chopped 

4 green onions, white and green parts, thinly sliced 

1 cup queso fresco, crumbled 

Spicy Bison Tacos:

2 tablespoons ancho chile powder

2 tablespoons smoked paprika 

1 tablespoon ground cumin

2 teaspoons cornstarch 

1 teaspoon crushed chipotle pepper 

1 teaspoon ground coriander

Kosher salt  

2 tablespoons grapeseed oil 

1 large yellow onion, diced 

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 pounds ground bison meat

12 corn or flour tortillas, for serving


Special equipment:
a 32-ounce mason jar
  1. For the pickled red onions and fennel: In a bowl, whisk together the honey and 2 tablespoons salt with 1 1/2 cups warm water until dissolved. Add the vinegar and peppercorns and whisk to combine. Place the onions and fennel in a large (32-ounce) mason jar. Pour the vinegar mixture over the onions and fennel. Cover the jar and refrigerate overnight and up to 3 weeks.
  2. For the Brussels sprout slaw with queso fresco: In a large bowl, combine the crema, mayonnaise, chipotle puree, lime zest, lime juice and 1 teaspoon salt. Mix well. Fold in the Brussels sprouts, cilantro and onions. When the sprouts are fully coated, mix in the queso fresco. Season with salt, if needed. Set aside.
  3. For the spicy bison tacos: Mix together the chile powder, smoked paprika, cumin, cornstarch, chipotle pepper, coriander and 2 teaspoons salt in a bowl.
  4. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onions and cook until starting to soften, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until the onion is soft and translucent, 5 minutes more. Add the meat and break it up with a spatula. Cook until browned, 5 to 6 minutes.
  5. Add the spice mixture to the skillet and stir it into the meat until combined. Add 3/4 cup water and cook, uncovered, until the mixture is bubbling and has thickened, about 2 minutes. Serve in tortillas with the pickled red onions and fennel, and the Brussels sprout slaw.

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