Cinco de Mayo

Chipotle Dressing

July 12, 2011

Chipotle Dressing

INGREDIENTS

¼ Cup Olive Oil

¼ Cup Fresh Lime Juice

¼ Cup Red Wine Vinegar

2 Large Chopped Garlic Cloves

1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

½ Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper

7 Ounces Chipotles In Adobo (7 Ounce Can)

In a blender, pulse the olive oil, lime juice, vinegar, garlic, salt and pepper until mixed.  Drain the canned chipotles, pouring all of the adobo sauce into the blender.  Add the chipotles to taste and puree the dressing.  One will give the dressing some heat and two or three will produce a medium hot dressing.  Four or more will make a hot, hot, hot dressing.  Chop any remaining chipotles and serve them on the side if you wish.  Serves 6

Pastel Tres Leches

June 28, 2011

Pastel Tres Leches

INGREDIENTS

1 ½ Cups Unbleached Flour

1 Teaspoon Baking Powder

½ Teaspoon Salt

6 Eggs

1 Cup Sugar

4 Teaspoons Vanilla Extract

14 Ounces Sweetened Condensed Milk

12 Ounces Evaporated Milk

3 Cups Heavy Cream

2 Tablespoons Sugar

Optional Fresh Fruit

Preheat the oven to 350° F.  Grease a 9×3 inch spring form pan.  In a medium bowl sift the flour, baking powder and salt together.  In a separate medium bowl mix (with a mixer) the eggs and sugar together.  Beat on high for 5 minutes.  Reduce the speed and add the water and one teaspoon of the vanilla.  Mix well.  Gently fold the flour mixture into the egg mixture.  Pour the batter into the spring form pan and bake for 35 to 45 minutes by placing the cake in the center of the oven.  The cake should be firm in the center and starts to pull away from the sides of the pan.  Remove from the oven and cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes.  Place a plate over the cake and turn upside down to remove the cake from the pan.  Next gently place the cake right side up onto your serving dish. 

To serve make sure your platter has a lip to hold in the milk.  In a bowl, mix together the evaporated milk, the condensed milk, 1 cup of the heavy cream and 2 teaspoons of vanilla.  Using a long tooth pick, ice pick or skewer, poke holes all over the cake.  The holes will allow the cake to absorb more of the milk.  Slowly pour or spoon the milk mixture all over the cake and allow it time to soak in before adding more milk.  Refrigerate.  When ready to serve the cake, place the 2 cups of whipping cream in a chilled mixing bowl and begin mixing on medium.  Add one teaspoon of vanilla and sugar one tablespoon at a time.  Beat on high until stiff peaks form.  Spread the whipping cream generously on the top of the cake.  Garnish with sliced fruit if you like.  Serves 8

Favorite Taco Salad

June 21, 2011

Favorite Taco Salad

There are many variations of the taco salad.  Often served as a fried flour tortilla shell stuffed with shredded lettuce and topped with diced tomatoes, shredded cheddar cheese, sour cream, guacamole and taco sauce.  The salad is topped with taco meat which is often times ground beef or seasoned shredded chicken.  The salad also may have a base of refried beans on the shell before the lettuce is added.  Here is my recipe for taco salad.

INGREDIENTS

Dressing:

¼ Cup Fresh Lime Juice

½ Cup Chopped Fresh Cilantro

1 Teaspoon Sugar

1 Tablespoon Chili Powder

¼ Teaspoon Ground Cumin

½ Teaspoon Salt

¼ Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper

½ Cup Olive Oil

Beef:

1 Chopped Medium Onion

4 Finely Chopped Garlic Cloves

2 Fresh & Finely Chopped Serrano Chiles

1 Tablespoon Chili Powder

2 Teaspoons Ground Cumin

2 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 ½ Pounds Ground Sirloin

8 Ounces Tomato Sauce

½ Teaspoon Salt

¼ Teaspoon Freshly Ground Black Pepper

Salad:

1 Large Avocado

1 Thinly Sliced Head Iceberg Lettuce

1 Chopped Large Tomato

1 ½ Cups Grated Extra-Sharp Cheddar Cheese

6 Ounces Sliced & Pitted Black Olives

15 to 19 Ounces of Black Beans (Drained & Rinsed)

To make the dressing: whisk together the lime juice, cilantro, sugar, chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper.  Next add the oil in a stream while whisking.  Whisk until emulsified. 

To cook the beef: in a large heavy skillet cook the onion, garlic, chilies, chili powder and cumin the oil over medium heat.  Stir occasionally and cook for 6 minutes until the onion is softened. Next add the beef and cook for 5 minutes.  Stir occasionally and break up any lumps.  Cook until meat is no longer pink and then spoon off any excess fat from the skillet.  Add the tomato sauce, salt and pepper to the beef and cook for 3 minutes.  Remove from heat. 

Assemble the salad: peel and pit the avocado and then cut into ½ inch pieces.  Spread the lettuce over bottom of a shallow 4 quart dish.  Spoon beef mixture evenly over the lettuce and continue making layers with tomatoes, cheese, beans, avocado and olives.  Drizzle the dressing over the salad and serve.  Serves 6

Santa Fe Burgers

May 29, 2011

Santa Fe Burgers

INGREDIENTS

2 Pounds Ground Sirloin

½ Teaspoon Kosher Salt

½ Teaspoon Fresh Ground Pepper

Santa Fe Salsa

Combine the ground sirloin, salt and pepper in a medium sized bowl.  Using your hands mix well.  Form into six patties and refrigerate until ready to grill.  Prepare a charcoal or gas grill and lightly spray the grill rack with vegetable oil cooking spray.  The coals should be hot.  Grill the burgers for about 5 minutes.  Flip the burgers and grill for another 4 or 5 minutes.  Serve with Santa Fe Salsa.  Serves 6

Santa Fe Salsa

INGREDIENTS

1 Pound Chopped Tomatoes

2 Seeded & Chopped Yellow or Red Bell Peppers

1 Cup Cooked Corn Kernels (Fresh or Frozen)

3 Finely Chopped Green Onions

2 Seeded & Chopped Jalapeno or Serrano Chilies

1 Minced Garlic Clove

4 Tablespoons Finley Chopped Cilantro

1 Tablespoon Fresh Lime Juice

2 Teaspoons Malt Vinegar

½ Teaspoon Kosher Salt

Combine the tomatoes, peppers, corn, green onions, chilies, garlic, cilantro, lime juice, vinegar and salt in a glass or ceramic bowl and gently stir to combine.  Let the salsa stand for about an hour to let the flavors blend.  Serve or cover to refrigerate for several hours.  Let the salsa reach room temperature before serving.  Makes 2 cups

Tilapia Ceviche

May 5, 2011

Tilapia Ceviche

INGREDIENTS

2 Pounds Diced Tilapia Fillets

1 Cup Lime Juice

½ Cup Seeded Chopped Tomato

½ Peeled/Seeded & Finely Diced Cucumber

½ Cup Finely Chopped Onion

¼ Cup Chopped Fresh Cilantro Leaves

Salt & Freshly Ground Pepper

1 Tablespoon Hot Sauce

1 Serrano Chile

6 Grilled Tostadas

1 Halved/Pitted/Peeled & Thinly Sliced Avocado

1 Lime Cut Into Wedges

Put the tilapia in a medium sized bowl.  Pour the lime juice (about 8 limes) over the fish and mix gently to combine.  Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator until the fish is white throughout.  This should take about 20 minutes.

Remove from the refrigerator and drain off the lime juice.  Gently squeeze the fish with your hands and discard the lime juice.  Add the tomato, cucumber, onion and cilantro.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.  Add the hot sauce and chile.

To grill the tortillas heat a grill or grill pan over medium heat.  Put the tortillas on the grill or grill pan and let them dry out until they are crunchy.  If you would rather used readymade tostadas you can do that as well. 

Top the tostadas generously with the ceviche.  Arrange the avocado slices on top of the ceviche and serve immediately with the lime wedges alongside.  Serves 6

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