On the California Taco Trail: Recipes from Hwy 99

These recipes are from and inspired by Restaurateur and Mexican-food fiend Sara Deseran's trek down California's historic, gritty, tortilla-packed Highway 99. Click through to discover some of the Golden State's most mouthwatering tacos, stews, and drinks.

Spicy Michelada

Spicy Michelada

For this take on a classic beer cocktail from Taqueria Mi Lindo Apatzingan in Rio Linda, Tajín (a Mexican seasoning blend of dried chiles, lime, and salt) adds both heat and tang.Dylan + Jeni

Jalisco-Style Goat Stew (Goat Birria)

Jalisco-Style Goat Stew (Goat Birria)
A low-and-slow cooking technique used for this birria, which colloquially means "a mess," ensures that the meat is fork-tender and the tomatillo broth infused with a rich, meaty flavor. Swap pork for goat, if you prefer. Get the recipe for Jalisco-Style Goat Stew (Goat Birria) »Dylan + Jeni
Shrimp Tacos

Shrimp Tacos

Every element of this taco—inspired by those at Don Pepe Taqueria in Fresno—is amped up, from the red rice simmered in a blend of chicken stock and puréed tomatoes to the quick-marinated shrimp. Use large flour tortillas as tacos or wrap them into a burrito.Dylan + Jeni

Yucatán-Style Shredded Pork Tacos with Achiote (Cochinita Pibil Tacos)

Yucatán-Style Shredded Pork Tacos with Achiote (Cochinita Pibil Tacos)
This pibil recipe, inspired by one used at Chando's in Sacramento and prepared in a Dutch oven, pops with earthy achiote paste and citrus juices, yielding a luscious, spicy pulled pork. Get the recipe for Yucatán-Style Shredded Pork Tacos with Achiote (Cochinita Pibil Tacos) »Dylan + Jeni
Carnitas Tacos (Michoacán-Style Braised Pork Tacos)

Carnitas Tacos (Michoacán-Style Braised Pork Tacos)

At the Viva Taco bus in Turlock, Silvestre Valencia adds jalapeño pickling liquid to the pork braise, which tenderizes the meat and keeps it from drying out. Get the recipe for Carnitas Tacos »

Tacos de Papa Hwy 99 (Potato Tacos)

Tacos de Papa Hwy 99 (Potato Tacos)
Inspired by the potato tacos at Loncheria Otro Rollo in Bakersfield, these Tacolicious versions are stuffed with fluffy mashed potatoes and pan-fried until crisp. The accompanying smoky ranchero sauce also would be great as an accompaniment for meat or fish or spooned over eggs.Romulo Yanes

Coconut Horchata

Coconut Horchata
This version of the classic Mexican rice-based drink, which writer Sara Deseran adapted from one at Fresno's El Mercado Super, is made with a mix of coconut milk and coconut water for a beverage that is both luxurious and refreshing. Get the recipe for Coconut Horchata »Romulo Yanes