Monday, June 14, 2010

Recipes from the Right Brained

I'm finally getting around to posting some recipes tonight. George is out for a meeting and I stayed up until 2am packing last night, so I am taking it easy tonight. Of course, I couldn't sleep even after I got in bed at 2 so I don't know what I'm complaining about. Wait, I'm not complaining. Now that that's settled, recipes:

These first two are repeats, I think. And again, they are not for people who like specifics- hence my title.

Salsa
Your amounts will just have to depend on how much you want to make.
Tomatoes, most seeds removed (don't be a perfectionist about it, just get a lot of them out of the way to avoid bitterness) and diced
Red onion
Cilantro, finely chopped (I always use Parsley instead)
Lime juice, freshly squeezed
Jalapenos, finely chopped
Kosher salt

Guacamole
Again, your amounts will just have to depend on how much you want to make. Clearly you want the most of avocados. Adjust everything else accordingly. For the mini tortilla cups, you have to really finely dice everything.
Avocados, peeled, pitted, diced
Tomatoes, chopped
Cilantro (again, I always use Parsley instead)
Jalepeno, finely diced
Red onion, finely diced
Lime juice
Kosher salt

Chipotle Mayonnaise
This is a Bobby Flay recipe. It has been a big hit around here this summer so far.
1 c. mayonnaise
2 chipotles in adobo sauce
1 T adobo sauce
juice from 1/2 lime
-add all ingredients in food processor and puree; season to taste with salt and pepper.

Black Bean and Corn Salad
People often use this as a type of salsa when they come to my house, but it is meant to be a side dish, and that's how I serve it. Still, it's hard to keep from scooping it up with a chip instead of a fork. I have posted it before. It came to me first from my friend Lauren.
1/3 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 cup olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
1 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels
1 avocado - peeled, pitted and diced
1 red bell pepper, chopped
2 tomatoes, chopped
6 green onions, thinly sliced
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro (Again, fresh parsley works great!)
-Place lime juice, olive oil, garlic, salt, and cayenne pepper in a small jar. Cover with lid, and shake until ingredients are well mixed.
-In a salad bowl, combine beans, corn, avocado, bell pepper, tomatoes, green onions, and cilantro. Shake lime dressing, and pour it over the salad. Stir salad to coat vegetables and beans with dressing, and serve.

Alright, we seem to be going in a Mexican-ish direction and to round off our recipe register for the evening, I give you two bootlegged recipes. It's absurd to me that theses actually could be categorized that way, and I actually paid good money for an online subscription to the website where I obtained these (if I didn't actually find them in the magazine which my brother-in-law pays good money to send me every two months.) I may be exaggerating, but if you know the publication to which I am referring, you'll know that friendliness and goodwill toward man is not anything like the first thing that comes to mind in dealings with them. Nonetheless, really good food is something that definitely comes to mind, and their recipes, while overly persnickety and detailed (and just all around left brained in nature), are really too good not to post from time to time. I think my blog is low profiled enough (as in, extremely) to fly under the radar with these, so with that in mind:

Refried Beans
I rarely make these because they are such a pain, but they are also really good and therefore worth the trouble every so often.
1/2c. low sodium chicken broth
2 (15.5 oz) cans pinto beans, drained and rinsed
1T vegetable oil
3oz. salt pork, rind removed and diced very small
1 small onion, chopped fine (about 3/4 c.)
1 jalapeno, seeds and ribs removed, minced
1 poblano, seeds and ribs removed, minced
1/4 tsp. salt
3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1/2 tsp. ground cumin
1T minced fresh cilantro (optional)
2 tsp. fresh lime juice (also optional)
- process broth and all but 1 cup of beans in food processor until smooth (about 15 seconds) scraping sides of bowl. add remaining beans and process until slightly chunky (about 10 1 second pulses).
- heat oil in 12 inch skillet over med. heat until shimmering. add salt pork and cook, stirring occasionally, until fat is rendered and pork is browned (about 10-15 minutes). Transfer pork out of pan with slotted spoon (you won't need it again). There should be 2T fat left in pan.
- increase heat to med. high. add onion, chiles, and salt, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened and beginning to brown. add garlic and cumin and cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant (about 30 seconds). add beans and stir until thoroughly combined.
- reduce heat to medium and cook until beans are thick and creamy (about 5 minutes). stir in cilantro and lime juice, if desired (I never do), and serve.

Mexican Rice
2 medium ripe tomatoes, cored and quartered
1 medium onion, peeled and quartered
3 medium jalapenos
2c. long grain white rice
1/3c. canola oil
4 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed
2c. low sodium chicken broth
1T tomato paste
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1/2c. minced, fresh cilantro
lime juice (optional)
-adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350
-process tomatoes and onion in food processor until smooth and thoroughly pureed (about 15 seconds). you should have exactly 2 cups.
-remove and discard ribs and seeds from 2 of the jalapenos and mince the jalapenos.
-rinse rice in colander under running water for 1 1/2 minutes and shake out all excess water.
-heat oil in an ovensafe 12 inch skillet with tightly fitting lid over medium high heat for 1-2 minutes. drop grains in oil and if they sizzle, it's ready. fry rice until golden and translucent for 6-8 minutes.
-reduce hear to medium, add garlic and seeded jalapenos, cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant about 1 1/2 minutes. stir in pureed tomatoes and onions, chicken broth, tomato paste, and salt. increase heat to medium high and bring to a boil.
-cover pan and transfer to oven. bake until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender, 30-35 minutes, stirring after 15 minutes.
-mince remaining jalapeno with seeds and stir in rice with cilantro. season with lime juice to taste.

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