Column: ‘Taco Tuesdays’ gives this reporter a taste of home
While preparing to write the article about the 4th Street Market, my editor suggested that I buy my lunch from the market in order to get a taste of what it offers.
On Tuesday, I made my way to the market to interview owner Tom Potter. After talking with him in the back office for a few minutes, I headed back into the main marketplace. I noticed the prepared food/deli station and looked it over for a few minutes, trying to decide what would make a good meal for a Tuesday afternoon.
While I perused, two men came up and picked out their meals.
I asked one of them what they like about the deli and he said he likes their tacos.
In a market deli section?
I’ve seen fried chicken, potato salad, jello molds, and fries of all shapes and sizes, but never a taco in the deli section. But he said their tacos were the best, so I figured I’d better try one.
“Hello, I hear that the tacos here are very good and that today is ‘Taco Tuesday,’ so could I get one of those?” I asked the man behind the counter.
“You’ve never had a taco before?” he asked.
“I’ve had tacos before, obviously. It’d be pretty sad if I’d lived this long without ever having a taco,”
I replied. “I’ve just never had one from here.”
“Well, you are in for a treat. What would you like on your taco? Tomato? Lettuce? Onions? Black olives?”
“That’s all fine.”
“Jalapeños? Taco sauce?”
“I’d rather not.”
“Yes.” If there is one thing I have learned in my years of eating Mexican food, it is to always say yes to sour cream. The same is true for guacamole.
A large tortilla was wrapped up in silver wrapping and after paying a very reasonable amount (especially for the size of the taco) I was on my way out.
When I made it back to the office, I unrolled my taco creation and took a bite.
Now, there are three types of tacos in my world. There is the authentic taco crafted to perfection by Tex-Mex restaurants. There is the “not-so-authentic” taco slung together by lunch ladies, fast food chains, and as a fundraiser.
And then there is the homemade taco. While this taco technically falls into the not-so-authentic category due to its simple Americanized ingredients, it still surpasses that label because it conjures up feelings of being at home with one’s family.
The taco from the market reminded me of a homemade taco. It wasn’t too spicy, the shell wasn’t too soft or hard, and the ratio of ingredients was perfect.
It was as if my mother had driven 60 miles to Duluth and wrapped it up herself.