Sunday, March 21, 2010

St. Patrick's 2010

Six years of St. Patrick's Day, observed! Some other statistics? 12 pounds brisket. 2 cups salt. 14 days curing in the fridge.19 quarts.3 hours simmering.4 cabbages. 8 pounds potatoes. 1 type of leftover possible: borscht.

Huevish rancheros

These are awesome. Perfect for brunch with mimosas, although we had it for dinner with beer. I don't think they even approach authenticity but in my teeny brain the math goes like this: eggs + tortilla + salsa = huevos rancheros. There's just a little bit of meat in here which really adds a nice salty punch, but it is super-easy to replace with pinto beans. Or you can just omit altogether and add more avocado and cheese or whatever you feel like.Mexican chorizo is spicy, bright red and is cooked like ground beef once you crumble it out of the casing. If you're looking at chorizo that is hard and slicable, then it's probably Spanish or Portugese not Mexican. I used one tube--that was the perfect amount for 2 servings. It's full-flavored, so what looks like a little really does go a long way. While your chorizo is cooking, go ahead and slice up an avocado and put salt, pepper and lime juice on it.After about 7 minutes over medium heat your chorizo should be looking done.Can I just mention real quick how much I love reusing the same pan for as many tasks as possible? Minimizes kitchen cleanup! Remove your cooked chorizo and set aside, turn up the flame and then in the same pan, crisp 4 tortillas by pressing them down over high heat. It helps to not have any sensation in your fingertips--alternatively, you can just toast them in a hot oven.All right--your tortillas are hot and toasty--keep them warm in the oven while you finish everything else up real quick. You have a very hot pan--melt bacon fat or some butter/olive oil and crack in some eggs, sunny side up. Make 2 per person.I like them soft in the middle and crispy around the edges with salt and pepper on top, but this is a personal preference thing, I am aware, so feel free to make your eggs however you like.Now let's assemble! Two tortillas...Cover in a layer of chorizo...And top that with two fried eggs, a spoonful of salsa verde (I happen to love tangy tomatillos with this but you might prefer red) and a handful of crumbled queso fresco.Avocado slices on top. Minced cilantro would be nice too, if you have it on hand.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Pink papaya salad

I found an interesting variation on papaya salad! Just one small red beet shredded up along with the green papaya tints it a gorgeous pink color and adds a sweetness that really goes well with the spice. I think I might even like this better than the original version. Also--here's a bonus recipe for easy-peasy salmon: take your filets and let them sit skin-side up for about 5 minutes in a baking dish covered with a mixture of equal parts orange juice, soy sauce and olive oil (and maybe a teensy pinch of fresh minced garlic and ginger if you happen to have it on hand). Flip them over so the skin-side is down, cover the top with sesame seeds (I use a mixture of black and white), and roast quickly at 400 degrees for just 8-10 minutes, depending on thickness of your salmon. So delicious and easy.By the way, I found this wine at Whole Foods and it was awesome with the super-spicy papaya salad.