Layered Taco Salad


For Dressing
1/4 Cup fresh lime juice
1/2 Cup chopped fresh cilantro
1 tsp sugar
1 Tbsp Chile Powder
1/4 tsp Ground Cumin
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Black Pepper
1/2 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

For Beef
1 medium onion, chopped
3 Tbsp Taco Seasoning
2 Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1-1/2 lb ground chuck
1 (8-oz) can tomato sauce
1/2 tsp Salt
1/4 tsp Black pepper

For Salad
1 (1/2-lb) firm-ripe California avocado
1 head iceberg lettuce, thinly sliced (8 cups)
1 large tomato (1/2 lb), chopped
1/4 lb coarsely grated extra-sharp Cheddar (1 1/2 cups)
1 (15- to 19-oz) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (6-oz) can sliced pitted California black olives, drained


Make Dressing:
Whisk together lime juice, cilantro, sugar, chile powder, cumin, salt, and pepper, then add oil in a stream, whisking until emulsified.

Cook Beef:
Cook onion, in oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until onion is well softened, about 6 minutes.
Add beef and taco seasoning, and cook, stirring occasionally and breaking up lumps, until meat is no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Spoon off any excess fat from skillet.
Add tomato sauce, salt, and pepper to beef and cook, stirring, until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat.

Assemble Salad:

Peel and pit avocado, then cut into 1/2-inch pieces.
Arrange lettuce over bottom of a shallow 4-quart serving dish.
Spoon beef mixture evenly on top of lettuce.
Continue making layers with tomatoes, cheese, beans, avocado, and olives.
Drizzle dressing over salad.