Pantry Essentials: Tajin

countertop with tajin and other things

 

You may have noticed this ingredient pop up in several of my recipes.  And if you know me personally, you know I’ve been evangelizing and extolling the virtues of this delightful spice blend, Tajin – pronounced Tah-HEEN.  I use it every day.  Really – every. day.  I keep it right next to the kosher salt and pepper near the stove.

But allow me to give credit where credit is due.  Several years, my very good friend, Alex, who lives in Mexico, sent me some Tajin as a little gift.  I’m very sorry to say, that I stored it in my pantry and didn’t open it for a while.  Like a LONG time.  (Lo siento, Alex!)

Then, the summer before last, my husband and I were having dinner at a little taco joint (Tatu Taco) which is totally the best – and instead of the typical tortillas and salsa, we were presented a bowl of popcorn.  But not just any popcorn…it was dusted with this citrusy, zippy powder.  I’m NOT a fan of popcorn, but I found myself devouring it – in a kind embarrassing way, I have to admit.

Our server came by and I asked what the spice was.  Well, you guessed it.  It was Tajin.  All of a sudden, I remembered:  I had that in my pantry!  All this time!  And never knew its deliciousness.  That all changed that night.

I add it to everything – scrambled eggs…gives them a zippy lift; to salads – helping to wake up the tomatoes and cucumbers; to sauces – just to give them an edge.  Sprinkle it on cooked meats…in fact, one of my favorite uses, is to blend Tajin with powdered garlic and onion, toss with chicken and roast it in the oven.  Your chicken is flavorful and so juicy – and the house smells amazing immediately.

Now, it used to be that I couldn’t find Tajin easily in my local supermarkets – and resorted to Amazon, which you can totally do.  But it’s starting to pop up – just look in the international aisle near the other Hispanic products and you might see it.

I’m telling you – once you experience it, there’s no putting it down.  It’s orange, piquant, limey, dusty gold!

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A great day for me is preparing great meals for friends and family. I enjoy experimenting with new ingredients and also updating classics that I've enjoyed for years. I love to travel and try lots of new cuisines - and wouldn't be anything without the love of my family!

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