Baja Tacos Plant-Pusher Style

Baja Tacos Plant-Pusher Style

June 8 is World Oceans Day, a day established by the United Nations to help protect and preserve all of the life sustained by the ocean. This year, give the oceans a break by enjoying this fantastic alternative to Baja fish tacos. Crispy fried eggplant (aubergine) is deeply satisfying when wrapped in a corn tortilla with shredded cabbage, pico de gallo and creamy Baja California-style sauce. Dig in.


Baja Sauce
  • 6 Tbsp vegan mayonnaise
  • 1 Tbsp soy milk
  • 1 clove garlic, finely minced
  • 1/2 tsp lime zest
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • 1 tsp hot sauce (we used Valentina brand)
Pico De Gallo
  • Small bunch fresh cilantro (coriander)
  • 1 tomato
  • 1/2 an onion
  • Juice of 1/2 lime
  • 1/4 tsp flaky sea salt
Eggplant (Aubergine)
  • 1 eggplant (aubergine)
  • 1/2 tsp flaky sea salt
  • 1 2/3 cups (200 g) plain white all-purpose flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 cup (220 ml) cold carbonated water
  • Vegetable oil, for frying
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • 1/4 sweetheart cabbage, finely shredded
  • Lime wedges, for squeezing
  • Hot sauce for serving


  1. For the baja sauce, place all the ingredients in a medium bowl and mix together until smooth. Set aside.
  2. For the pico de gallo, finely chop the cilantro (coriander) and place in a small bowl. Finely chop the tomato and onion and add to the bowl, along with the lime juice and salt. Mix together, then place in the fridge while you prepare the tacos.
  3. For the eggplant, slice the aubergine in half length-ways then slice into 2-inch (5-cm) long batons. Place the batons in a medium bowl and scatter on the flaky sea salt. Massage the salt into the aubergine briefly and set aside for 10 minutes.
  4. Add 1/3 cup (50 g) of the flour to the eggplant (aubergine), and toss to coat completely.
  5. Mix the remaining 1 1/3 cups (150 g) of flour and the baking powder in a separate medium bowl. Gradually add the cold carbonated water and fold in gently with a spatula until the batter is smooth. Place a medium frying pan over medium heat and pour in vegetable oil to a depth of about 1 inch (2.5 cm). Heat the oil to about 350ºF (175ºC). To test it, drop a little batter into the oil: it should sizzle and brown within 30 seconds.
  6. Working with a few pieces of eggplant (aubergine) at a time, dip in the batter then gently lay in the oil to fry. Fry until golden brown all over, flipping once, about 30 seconds per side.
  7. Remove from the oil and drain on a paper towel while you repeat the process with the remaining eggplant (aubergine) and batter.
  8. To serve, warm the tortillas in a dry frying pan for each 10 seconds on each side. Fill each with the shredded cabbage, a few batons of aubergine, some baja sauce and pico de gallo. Serve with lime wedges and hot sauce.
preparing the baja sauce for vegan tacos

Baja sauce is simple to make: just stir together the vegan mayonnaise, lime juice, lime zest, hot sauce, salt and garlic. The amount of hot sauce you use all depends on how spicy it is and how you spicy you like it. We use Valentina hot sauce, which is quite mild.

making the pico de Gallo for tacos

Pico de gallo is another simple Mexican style salsa. Try to dice your ingredients as finely as possible.

preparing the eggplant for the vegan tacos

When slicing the eggplant (aubergine), it helps to slice it lengthwise into eights, and then slice the pieces in half to create roughly 2-inch (5-cm) batons.

When frying the aubergine, be careful not to splash the hot oil. Gently lay the aubergine away from you into the oil. The batter will brown rather quickly, and it’s important to serve straight away to keep everything crispy!

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