Butternut Squash and Black Bean Tacos (Vegan)

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I realize this is my third (wait…  fourth) vegan post in a row.  This is not intentional.  I’m just digging the array of textures, flavors and colors of plants right now.  You know?  And truth be told, I have been googling things–very, very dangerous carnivorous things.  Stay tuned!

Meanwhile, if you, like me, have been on the vegetable bandwagon lately, TACOS.  Pull up a chair and let’s talk.

These, in particular, are a straight-up joyous RAINBOW of orange, green, purple, yellow, etc.  You have sweet, warm and soft squash, sweet, cool and crunchy carrot shreds, hearty black beans, sharp red onion, spicy serrano peppers…  And a good helping of tart, fresh lime and bright, green cilantro.

We make a crunchy slaw of sorts, and marinate it for a little bit in a bunch of lime juice and a generous pinch of salt.  Cool and tangy and spicy…  Lots to like here.

Then, the hearty vegetable base.  Hearty, warm, comforting, also spicy.  This will more than satisfy a healthy winter appetite, but you don’t have to stop here.

A hunk of creamy avocado atop would be delicious–ditto to a dollop of sour cream (or a vegan version thereof).  Also, if your omnivore suggestion box is open to suggestions, one word: chorizo, dude.  (Ok, two words.)

So there you are!  Is life good, or what?

Butternut Squash and Black Bean Tacos

1/2 a medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded and diced
4 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon Mexican oregano
A pinch of red pepper flakes (more to taste)
1 can black beans, rinsed and drained 
Salt to taste

1 medium carrot, shredded
1/4 of a red onion, sliced thinly
1/2 a serrano pepper, sliced thinly
Juice of one lime
Generous pinch of salt 

8 corn tortillas
Small handful fresh cilantro
Lime wedges, for serving

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Toss the squash, 2 tablespoons of the oil, garlic and spices until the squash cubes are coated well.  Arrange in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast until cooked through, stirring and flipping a few times, about 20-25 minutes.

In a medium bowl, toss the carrot, red onion, serrano peppers, lime juice and salt.  Set aside.

In a large saucepan, heat up the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil over medium-high heat.  Toss in squash and beans and cook until just heated through.

Divide squash filling among the tortillas, top with the carrot/onion mixture and fresh cilantro.  Serve alongside lime wedges.  Serves 3-4 or so.

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