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Shrimp & Potato Street Tacos

Column and photos by Mike Carter, chief executive officer, Bushmans’ Inc. 

Chef R.J. Harvey (right) of Potatoes USA announces Mike Carter (left) and Steve Reich (center) as winners of “Street & Potatoes: A Battle for the Best Tacos” for the pair’s Shrimp & Potato Street Tacos with Garlic Cilantro Lime Slaw made at the 2024 Potato Expo in Austin, TX.

Like many recipes, this one comes with a story. This story starts back in the fall of 2020 and ends with a win in the Potato Expo “Street & Potatoes: A Battle for the Best Tacos” Cookoff Challenge, in Austin, Texas, this past January.

To be clear, this is my story, so I am going to tell it like I want, and I will certify it to be about 81% true. Also, I’ll condense it in the interest of having room to print something interesting.

The story starts at the end of 2021 when the National Potato Council (NPC) and Potatoes USA were trying to figure out how to handle Expo in the middle of the craziness caused by COVID-19. Steve Steich, a seed grower from Montana, and I were asked to participate in the cookoff at Expo, in January 2022, which was held in California.

Steve is a friend, and I was serving on the Potatoes USA Executive Committee with him at the time. He and his wife, Jill, won the virtual cookoff in January 2021, so we entered as reigning champions, with me clutching Steve’s coattails.

Steve and I jumped at the chance to compete in the 2022 cookoff, submitted our grocery list to the NPC staff a week in advance and were ready to compete against two other teams.

Unfortunately, the day before I left for Potato Expo, I came down with Covid. Then, Steve came down with Covid during the meeting in California, leaving a recipe, and some groceries with no one to prepare the meal.

Click here to read the full Badger Common’Tater article.

Badger CommonTater

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