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Bison Tacos With Butternut Squash Salsa As Made By Pyet Despain

Inspired by her Native American and Mexican heritage, Chef Pyet DeSpain shares the recipe for bison tacos with butternut squash salsa. Fragrantly-spiced game meat is seared to medium-rare, then sliced and served in warm tortillas with a hearty squash and guajillo chile sauce and topped with cilantro and chiles for extra freshness and spice.

Tasty Team
March 19, 2021
Bison Tacos With Butternut Squash Salsa As Made By Pyet Despain
Total Time

1 hr 18 min

1 hr 18 min

Prep Time

20 minutes

20 min

Cook Time

45 minutes

45 min

Total Time

1 hr 18 min

1 hr 18 min

Prep Time

20 minutes

20 min

Cook Time

45 minutes

45 min

Ingredients

for 6 servings

Butternut Squash Salsa

  • 1 ½ cups butternut squash (210 g), peeled
  • 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil (), divided
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • medium white onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup water (250 mL)
  • 2 oz dried guajillo chile (56 g)
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves ()
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon ()
  • ½ teaspoon ground thyme ()
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar ()

Seared Bison Tacos

  • 8 oz bison strip steak
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon chile powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 corn tortillas, warm
  • ⅓ cup finely diced white onion
  • ⅓ cup fresh cilantro
  • 1 thin slice red fresno chile
  • lime wedge, for serving

Nutrition Info

  • Calories 227
  • Fat 11g
  • Carbs 23g
  • Fiber 7g
  • Sugar 3g
  • Protein 10g

Estimated values based on one serving size.

Preparation

  1. Make the butternut squash salsa: Preheat the oven to 375°F (190˚C). Line 2 baking sheets with foil.
  2. Dice the butternut squash into ½-inch pieces. Transfer to a medium bowl and toss with the olive oil until well coated. Season with salt.
  3. Spread the squash in a single layer on a prepared baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, until the squash is softened and beginning to brown.
  4. Cut onion into 1-inch wedges then transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, until starting to brown.
  5. Season the bison: Trim any excess fat from the bison steak. Transfer to a medium bowl and season with the salt, black pepper, cumin, chile powder, cayenne, and garlic powder, rubbing to coat well all over. Set aside while you prepare the peppers.
  6. Bring the water to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the guajillo peppers to a medium heat-proof bowl and pour the boiling water over. Cover and let sit for 10–20 minutes, until the peppers soften. Remove the peppers from the water, reserving the water, and remove the stems and seeds.
  7. Add the roasted onion, butternut squash, soaked peppers, cloves, cinnamon, thyme, cumin, brown sugar, salt, and ½ cup of the guajillo soaking liquid to a food processor. Process into a thick salsa. Transfer to a bowl and set aside until ready to serve.
  8. Sear the steak: Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the steak and sear on each side for 3 minutes, until a golden brown crust forms. Remove the steak from the pan and let rest for at least 3 minutes, then thinly slice against the grain.
  9. Assemble the tacos: Layer the steak on warm tortillas and top with the diced onion, cilantro, butternut squash salsa, and chiles. Serve with lime wedges alongside.
  10. Enjoy!

Ingredients

for 6 servings

Butternut Squash Salsa

  • 1 ½ cups butternut squash (210 g), peeled
  • 1 ½ tablespoons olive oil (), divided
  • kosher salt, to taste
  • medium white onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup water (250 mL)
  • 2 oz dried guajillo chile (56 g)
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves ()
  • ½ teaspoon cinnamon ()
  • ½ teaspoon ground thyme ()
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar ()

Seared Bison Tacos

  • 8 oz bison strip steak
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon chile powder
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 corn tortillas, warm
  • ⅓ cup finely diced white onion
  • ⅓ cup fresh cilantro
  • 1 thin slice red fresno chile
  • lime wedge, for serving

Nutrition Info

  • Calories 227
  • Fat 11g
  • Carbs 23g
  • Fiber 7g
  • Sugar 3g
  • Protein 10g

Estimated values based on one serving size.

Preparation

  1. Make the butternut squash salsa: Preheat the oven to 375°F (190˚C). Line 2 baking sheets with foil.
  2. Dice the butternut squash into ½-inch pieces. Transfer to a medium bowl and toss with the olive oil until well coated. Season with salt.
  3. Spread the squash in a single layer on a prepared baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, until the squash is softened and beginning to brown.
  4. Cut onion into 1-inch wedges then transfer to the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, until starting to brown.
  5. Season the bison: Trim any excess fat from the bison steak. Transfer to a medium bowl and season with the salt, black pepper, cumin, chile powder, cayenne, and garlic powder, rubbing to coat well all over. Set aside while you prepare the peppers.
  6. Bring the water to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the guajillo peppers to a medium heat-proof bowl and pour the boiling water over. Cover and let sit for 10–20 minutes, until the peppers soften. Remove the peppers from the water, reserving the water, and remove the stems and seeds.
  7. Add the roasted onion, butternut squash, soaked peppers, cloves, cinnamon, thyme, cumin, brown sugar, salt, and ½ cup of the guajillo soaking liquid to a food processor. Process into a thick salsa. Transfer to a bowl and set aside until ready to serve.
  8. Sear the steak: Heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the steak and sear on each side for 3 minutes, until a golden brown crust forms. Remove the steak from the pan and let rest for at least 3 minutes, then thinly slice against the grain.
  9. Assemble the tacos: Layer the steak on warm tortillas and top with the diced onion, cilantro, butternut squash salsa, and chiles. Serve with lime wedges alongside.
  10. Enjoy!

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