Recipe: Crunchy Ham Taco with Guava Chutney, Pickled Onions and Queso Fresco

Food & Living
"Recipe: Crunchy Ham Taco with Guava Chutney, Pickled Onions and Queso Fresco"


Crunchy Ham Taco with Guava Chutney, Pickled Onions and Queso Fresco
Created by chef Ingrid Hoffmann

Makes 6 servings




Pickled Onions (makes 2 1Ž2 cups)

1 1Ž2 cup red onion, thinly sliced
1Ž2 cup cilantro leaves
1Ž4 cup white vinegar
1Ž4 cup water
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper


Spicy Guava Chutney (makes 3 1Ž2 cups)

1/2 cup white vinegar
1/2 cup golden raisins
1 red onion, chopped
1/3 cup yellow bell pepper, chopped
1 jalapeño pepper, seeded, ribbed and finely chopped
2-inch piece gingerroot, peeled and finely chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon ground allspice
1 green apple, peeled, halved, cored, and cubed
1 (14oz) can guava shells in syrup, drained and chopped


12 yellow corn tortillas

4 cups Smithfield Spiral Hickory Smoked Ham, sliced in strips, divided
non-stick cooking spray (or 1/3 cup olive oil)
1 1Ž2 cups queso fresco, crumbled




Pickled onions

  1. In a medium bowl, mix all ingredients. Refrigerate for an hour before serving.


  1. In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, add vinegar and stir in raisins, onion, peppers, ginger, garlic and allspice. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the onions and peppers are tender; approximately 8 to 10 minutes.
  2. Add guava shells and apple and continue to simmer, stirring occasionally, until fruit begins to break down and mixture thickens to a jam consistency; about 25 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside to cool. Refrigerate any leftover chutney in a tight sealed container for up to 1 week.
  3.  Preheat oven to 375° F.
  4. Working in two batches.  Wrap 2 tortillas in a damp paper towel.  Microwave on high for 30 seconds to steam.
  5. Carefully spray each tortilla with non-stick cooking spray on each side.   If using olive oil, lightly coat each tortilla side using a pastry brush.
  6. Drape tortillas over two bars of oven’s cooking rack and bake for 8-10 minutes until crisp and golden.  Repeat with second batch of tortillas.
  7. To Serve:  Heat a large sauté pan over medium heat.  Lightly pan fry ham strips for 2 minutes, stirring frequently to cook evenly.  Fill each crunchy taco shell with 1/3 cup ham strips, 2-3 tablespoons chutney and 2-3 tablespoons onions.  Sprinkle with 2 tablespoons queso fresco and enjoy.