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Breakfast, Comida Latina, Mains, Recipes

Beet Chilaquiles with Fried Eggs & Crumbly Herb Cheese

April 28, 2017
These beet chilaquiles with fried eggs are crisp tortillas covered in a spicy beet salsa then topped with a crumbly herb cheese, sour cream, and fried eggs.

The biggest takeaway from my Baja trip last fall was (no surprise here) the food. I expected to eat some really enjoyable meals, of course, but I was not expecting the sophisticated twists, the bold turns, the eye-popping flavors.

One of my favorite meals was at Alma Verde in Tijuana; an organic juice bar/brunch spot that served flights of chilaquiles…I mean, come on. A beet version landed at our table and I immediately was drawn to it by the deep magenta hue, but one bite and I loved it for the earthy, nutty sauce that left a tingling in your mouth. I knew I was going to be making this again and again.

beet chilaquiles

HOW TO MAKE CHILAQUILES

Chilaquiles are made in 3 steps (with a fourth optional step if you so choose).

  1. The Sauce
  2. The Chips
  3. Combining the sauce + the chips
  4. Adding stuff on top, i.e. fried egg, Mexican crema, cheese, cilantro, etc.

THE SAUCE

beet chilaquiles

Traditional chilaquiles are made with either a red (dried chile) sauce or a green (tomatillo) sauce. In this case we are using beets.

beets + sesame seeds + serrano chiles + garlic

THE CHIPS

The best chilaquiles are made with freshly fried tortilla chips, not store-bought. Use manufactured corn tortillas, not homemade you go-getter, you.

corn tortillas + oil + salt

ALL TOGETHER NOW

beet chilaquiles

This is the make-or-break moment. You want to cook the chips just long enough in the sauce to coat them, but not too long that they get mushy. Fry the sauce in a little bit of the leftover oil from making the chips, add the chips to the sauce, and turn to coat.

sauce + chips

OTHER STUFF

beet chilquiles

My favorite part of chilaquiles are all the garnishes. I like to prepare a bunch of things and put them on the table for people to help themselves. A few ideas:

fried eggs, sliced radishes, baby arugula, cilantro, grilled chicken, sliced serranos, queso fresco, Mexican crema, sliced scallions, chopped cooked beets, lime wedges

I shared my recipe for Beet Chilaquiles over on Salt & Wind to get you excited about their upcoming trips to Baja, so hop on over there and check it out! And right now, they are offering an exclusive deal for ¡Hola! Jalapeño readers: $100 off one of their trips when you use promo code HOLABAJA at check out!

beet chilaquiles

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

 

Comida Latina, Condiments and Salsas, Mains, Popular, Recipes

Roasted Sweet Potato and Sprouted Lentil Tacos

April 18, 2017
Sweet potato and lentil tacos made with roasted sweet potatoes, DIY sprouted lentils, & jalapeño yogurt salsa wrapped in homemade sprouted lentil tortillas.

{This #SpringCleanse post is sponsored by Lentils.org}

If spring is all about renewal than spring cooking should reflect that in some ways too. There is a freshness and light in the air and that feeling has made its way into my kitchen.

sweet potato and lentil tacos recipe

I love lentils and traditionally have used them in heartier cooking—soups, stews, with sausage, and so forth but this time I wanted lentils to add lightness and a tender bite to what I was cooking. I’ve read a lot about making your own sprouts from beans and seeds and such but had never actually tried it at home. The added nutrient boost was reason enough to get me excited; lentils are naturally loaded with protein but sprouted lentils also have antioxidant benefits as well as being excellent for digestive health. But it really wasn’t until I realized how easy they are that I decided there was no excuse not to try.

How to Sprout Lentils

sweet potato and lentil tacos recipe

You can buy all sorts of fancy equipment to sprout with, which might be handy when sprouting smaller seeds, but sprouting lentils is so easy all I used was a colander. The lentils have to be soaked overnight then I strained them through a large colander, spreading the lentils out as much as possible and cover the colander with a kitchen towel. I left them on my counter and rinsed them a few times a day to keep them from drying out. After a couple of days, little sprouts emerged and they were tender enough to eat. You can keep going for up to five days to get the sprouts to grow bigger but I used mine after three. I’ve used the sprouted lentils in all kinds of things—tossed in salads, in sandwiches, I’ve even been topping my eggs in the morning with a handful of lentils. Their texture is just addictive and they have a subtle sweet, earthy flavor that is delicious with just about anything. It was these tacos though that got me really excited.

Sweet Potato and Lentil Tacos

sweet potato and lentil tacos recipe

Sweet potato and lentil tacos are one of my favorite veggie taco combinations. The lovely thing about these tacos however, are the sprouted lentils don’t need to be cooked, they add a wonderful crunch to the tender roasted sweet potatoes and soft tortilla. As for these homemade tortillas they really take the idea of spring cleanse to a whole other level. Corn tortillas are pretty good for you but a soft homemade corn tortilla spiced with turmeric and sprouted lentils are something you can feel good about eating two times over. I know homemade tortillas aren’t something you’re going to whip out after gymnastics practice on a Tuesday night but when you have the time, I encourage you to give them a try. Get the recipe and all the details on how to make them and just think about it.

Jalapeno Yogurt Salsa

sweet potato and lentil tacos recipe

This salsa is like a breath of fresh (if not pretty spicy) air. It pulls all the flavors of these tacos together; creamy but still very light, made with yogurt instead of the more traditional sour cream. With the leftovers I added a bit more olive oil and vinegar and made a fiery salad dressing that was great on a sprouted lentil, radish, apple, dried currant, and arugula salad—uses for these lentils are just sprouting up everywhere (pun fully intended)!

Let Lentils.org inspire you to clean up your act this spring and enter the #SpringCleanse Canadian Lentil Sweepstakes! Check out the details below.

Roasted Sweet Potato and Sprouted Lentil Tacos
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Sweet potato and lentil tacos made with roasted sweet potatoes, DIY sprouted lentils, & jalapeño yogurt salsa wrapped in homemade sprouted lentil turmeric tortillas.
Author:
Serves: 4-6 servings
Ingredients
For the sprouted lentils:
  • ½ cup whole dried lentils
For the sweet potatoes:
  • 2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon ground New Mexico chile powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cinnamon
For the salsa:
  • 2 jalapeños
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 cup whole milk Greek yogurt
  • 1 cup cilantro leaves
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon white balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
For the tacos:
Instructions
To sprout the lentils:
  1. Start at least 3 days in advance; cover lentils with about an inch of water and let sit overnight.
  2. The next day strain and spread lentils out in the strainer, giving them as much room as possible. Set the strainer over a plate and cover with a clean kitchen towel. Leave at room temperature.
  3. Rinse lentils at least 3 times a day for at least 2 days or until they start to sprout. Continue rinsing and leave them covered at room temperature for up to 5 days, depending on how large you'd like the sprouts to be.
  4. Transfer to a resealable plastic bag and refrigerate. Sprouted lentils will keep for up to 5 days in the refrigerator.
For the tacos:
  1. Heat oven to 425°F and arrange rack in the upper third.
  2. Combine sweet potatoes, olive oil, and spices in a large bowl. Lay in a single layer on a baking sheet and roast until just tender, about 15 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, make the salsa. Place jalapeños and unpeeled garlic cloves in a dry comal or skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until charred on all sides (garlic will take less time so remove that first).
  4. Remove garlic peel and the stems from the jalapeños. Cut jalapeños in half and remove seeds if you'd like it less spicy.
  5. Place charred vegetables in a blender with yogurt, cilantro, olive oil, vinegar, and salt and blend on high until smooth. Taste and add more salt or vinegar as needed.
  6. To serve, toss sweet potatoes with cilantro and sliced spring onions then divide between the warm tortillas and top with sprouted lentils. Drizzle with salsa and enjoy!
Notes
Sprouting your own lentils is super easy but it does take some planning. The lentils take at least 3 days to sprout so plan ahead.

Serving these tacos in homemade tortillas make them extra special but store-bought corn tortillas also work here.

 

#SpringCleanse Canadian Lentils Sweepstakes

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it. Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too! This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Lentils.org. The opinions and text are all mine.

Mains, Recipes

One-Pan Cauliflower and Blue Cheese Stuffed Pork Chops with Roasted Sweet Potatoes

April 6, 2017
One-Pan Cauliflower and Blue Cheese Stuffed Pork Chops with Roasted Sweet Potatoes Recipe from @holajalapeno

With Easter right around the corner I thought I’d offer up something a little different than your average baked ham or turkey or other traditional celebratory foods. These stuffed pork chops are for a smaller crowd (which you could certainly double or triple)  but still fancy enough to feel special and warrant a nice bottle of wine to go with it.

One-Pan Blue Cheese and Cauliflower Stuffed Pork Chops with Roasted Sweet Potato Recipe from @holajalapeno

First, the sweet potatoes

The stuffed pork chops and sweet potatoes get baked in one pan which is easy on the clean-up. To get started we need to get the sweet potatoes in the oven, they take twice as long to roast as the stuffed pork chops. Toss them with some lemon zest and paprika, a little olive oil and salt and pepper and get them going in the oven.

How to pound the pork chops

Meanwhile you can pound out the boneless chops. It is worth mentioning to look for thin, already-pounded pork chops at the store. They will sometimes be labeled escaloped pork chops or if you go to a Mexican market they might be called chuletas para milanesa. Doing it yourself however is really very simple, all you need is a meat mallet, rolling pin, or even a wine bottle will work (be careful with that one though). Cover the pork chop with a layer of plastic wrap to keep the mallet from sticking and try to get them as thin as possible, the wider they are, the easier they will be to roll up and the more filling you can stuff in each one.

One-Pan Blue Cheese and Cauliflower Stuffed Pork Chops with Roasted Sweet Potatoes Recipe from @holajalapeno

All about the filling

As for the filling, I used riced cauliflower instead of traditional rice. I love the flavor and the fact that nothing in the filling has to be cooked first. I buy the riced cauliflower at Trader Joe’s but you can make your own, if you don’t know how, check out this video. The filling takes on a more Mediterranean flare with roasted, salted pistachios, dried persimmons, bits of blue cheese, and minced red chiles for spice.

One-Pan Cauliflower and Blue Cheese Stuffed Pork Chops with Roasted Sweet Potatoes Recipe form @holajalapeno

How to stuff the pork chops

Spoon the filling on to the pounded chops—the recipe calls for about 2 tablespoons in each but if your chops are bigger I say put in as much as each one can handle. Then roll the pork over the filling and hold each one together at the seam with a toothpick. Making a roulade like this means more stuffing in each, but if you’d like to get bone-in pork chops you can cut a slit in the middle of each one and stuff the filling into the pocket (the roasting time will be longer however).

One-Pan Cauliflower and Blue Cheese Stuffed Pork Chops with Roasted Sweet Potatoes Recipe from @holajalapeno

Nestle each chop (seam-side down) in between the sweet potatoes and brush with a little balsamic-honey glaze. Then return to the oven to roast for only about 20 minutes. The pork chops can be filled and refrigerated the night before if you’d like to get that step done in advance.

One-Pan Cauliflower and Blue Cheese Stuffed Pork Chops with Roasted Sweet Potatoes Recipe from @holajalapeno

A simple mustard vinaigrette pulls the whole dish together. Serve with some fresh spring asparagus blanched in salted water and served warm with a little butter and squeeze of lemon.

One-Pan Cauliflower and Blue Cheese Stuffed Pork Chops with Roasted Sweet Potatoes
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
The ultimate stuffed pork chops: Boneless pork chops filled with cauliflower rice, blue cheese, pistachios, dried persimmons, chile flakes, and scallions. Roasted over sweet potatoes and drizzled with a mustard vinaigrette before serving.
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
  • 2 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • ¼ cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • ¾ teaspoon kosher salt, divided, plus more for seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for seasoning
  • 4 center-cut, boneless pork chops
  • ½ cup riced cauliflower *see note
  • ¼ cup crumbled blue cheese
  • 1 scallion, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped roasted, salted pistachios
  • 1 tablespoon chopped dried persimmons or dried apricots
  • 1 tablespoon chopped Italian parsley
  • 1 teaspoon minced fresh red chiles or dried chile flakes
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon honey
For the Mustard Vinaigrette:
  • 1 tablespoon sherry vinegar
  • 1 scallion, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon whole grain mustard
  • ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 400°F and arrange rack in the middle.
  2. Place sweet potatoes on a large roasting pan and drizzle 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over them. Zest the lemon and sprinkle the zest over the sweet potatoes along with the paprika,1/2 teaspoon of the salt, and ¼ teaspoon of the black pepper. Toss to coat then spread into a single layer.
  3. Roast sweet potatoes in oven 15 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, place one pork chop on a cutting board and cover with plastic wrap. Using a meat mallet or rolling pin, pound the pork chop to about ¼-inch thickness. Repeat with remaining pork chops. Season each pork chops with salt and pepper.
  5. Combine cauliflower, blue cheese, scallion, pistachios, persimmons, parsley, chile flakes, ¼ teaspoon of salt, and ¼ teaspoon of pepper in a medium bowl.
  6. Divide cauliflower mixture between the pork chops and roll up to seal. Place a toothpick at the seam to hold closed.
  7. Nestle pork chops, seam-side down between the sweet potatoes. Combine balsamic vinegar and honey in a small bowl, then brush the mixture over the pork chops.
  8. Roast pork in oven until cooked through, about 20-30 minutes.
  9. Meanwhile, make the vinaigrette by combining all the ingredients together in a medium bowl.
  10. Remove toothpicks from pork chops and serve immediately with the sweet potatoes and vinaigrette.
Notes
I bought riced cauliflower at Trader Joe's or you can do it yourself by grating raw cauliflower through the large holes of a box grater or through the grating attachment on your food processor.

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

Breakfast, Comida Latina, Condiments and Salsas, Mains, Recipes

8 Delicious Ways to Use Tomatillos + Huevos Divorciados

March 24, 2017
Huevos Divorciados Recipe from @holajalapeno

This post was sponsored by Ralphs, all opinions however are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make this blog possible! 

If you have a weakness for green salsa, you may be a tomatillo lover and not even know it.  Tomatillos are essential to Mexican cooking and were first cultivated by the Aztecs centuries ago. The name might not be familiar but I’m sure you have seen them, they are the green (or sometimes purple) tomato-looking fruit that are wrapped in a crinkly paper husk. Tomatillos—while they may look like a tomato—have actually nothing to do with tomatoes but are in the same family as the cape gooseberry and have the tartness to prove it.

8 Ways to Cook with Tomatillos from @holajalapeno

How To Buy and Prep Tomatillos

When buying tomatillos, look for firm-fleshed fruit with no bruises or browned spots. The best tomatillos are on the smaller side, about the size of a ping pong ball, the bigger they are the more bitter they tend to be. Ralphs always has a beautiful selection of tomatillos as well as cilantro, jalapeños, and everything else I need to make my favorite Mexican recipes.

To cook with tomatillos, remove the papery husk and give them a rinse under cold water.  They don’t need to be peeled or seeded and can be eaten raw or cooked. Their tart flavor can be used to bring a tangy zing to everything from salsas to soups and slowly braised meat dishes. Here are my favorite ways to cook with tomatillos:

8 easy recipes for tomatillos from @holajalapeno

Tomatillo Avocado Salsa

In Salsa

 

8 Easy Recipes For Tomatillos from @holajalapeno

In Soup

8 Easy Recipes for Tomatillos from @holajalapeno

Green Chilaquiles with Fried Eggs

For Breakfast

8 Easy Recipe for Tomatillos from @holajalapeno

Slow Cooker Carne Adobada

For Dinner

Another Mexican classic that relies heavily on tomatillos are Huevos Divorciados or Divorced Eggs. The two eggs are usually separated by a sea of green (tomatillo) salsa and a smooth red salsa but I’m tapping into my love affair with beets and made a roasted beet relish instead. It’s still green and red, the huevos have in no way gotten back together and we all get to pack a few more veggies into breakfast—Yay for us!!

Huevos Divorciados Recipe from @holajalapeno

This tomatillo salsa is a bit different from the other versions mentioned above. The addition of Greek yogurt takes it to a completely different place,  it adds a creaminess that is such a perfect counterpoint to the tart nature of tomatillos that I can’t believe I have never made tomatillos salsa like this before.

I piled the whole thing on a plate of fried tahini breakfast potatoes which are a creation of my friend Susana. A spoonful of tahini melts into the potatoes as they fry, coating them in a glorious sesame bath. The extra oil makes them super crispy and golden.

Huevos Divorciados Recipe by @holajalapeno

Huevos Divorciados with Creamy Tomatillo Salsa & Roasted Beet Relish
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Huevos Divorciados: 2 eggs smothered in creamy tomatillo salsa & roasted beet relish on fried tahini breakfast potatoes.
Author:
Serves: 2-4 servings
Ingredients
For the Tomatillo Salsa:
  • 2 pounds tomatillos, husks removed and rinsed
  • 1 small yellow onion, quartered
  • 2 cloves garlic, unpeeled
  • 2-3 jalapeños, stemmed and cut in half (add as many or few jalapeños as you like depending on how spicy you want the salsa to be)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 cup cilantro leaves
  • ½ cup Greek yogurt
For the Beet Relish:
  • 4-6 small beets, trimmed and washed
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 jalapeno, stemmed and minced (seeds removed if you'd like it less spicy)
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon minced cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon orange juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
For the Tahini Potatoes:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ yellow onion, diced
  • 4 small Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon tahini paste
  • ½ teaspoon smoked paprika
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cumin
For the Eggs:
  • 2-4 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2-4 large eggs
  • Crumbled queso fresco, optional
Instructions
To Make the Tomatillo Salsa:
  1. Heat oven to 425°F and arrange rack in the upper third of the oven.
  2. Combine tomatillos, onion, garlic, and jalapeños on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt. Toss to coat.
  3. Roast veggies until softened and brown, about 20 minutes.
  4. Transfer veggies to a blender (removing the skin from the garlic first), add cilantro and yogurt and season with salt (I used 2 teaspoons) and blend until smooth. You might need to do this in two batches depending on the size of your blender.
  5. This will make a lot more salsa than you'll need but extra salsa is never a bad problem to have.
  6. Keep oven on to roast the beets.
For the Beet Relish:
  1. Place beets in a baking dish and drizzle with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Season with salt and cover with foil. Roast beets until they can be easily pierced with a knife, about 30-40 minutes. Let cool.
  2. Peel beets by rubbing the skin off with a paper towel or a pairing knife then cut into small dice.
  3. Combine beets with remaining relish ingredients and toss to combine. Season with salt to taste.
For the Potatoes:
  1. Heat oil in a cast iron skillet or nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onion and potatoes and season with salt.
  2. Cook, undisturbed a few minutes then add remaining potato ingredients and stir until tahini has coated the potatoes. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and let cook, stirring occasionally until potatoes are tender, about 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat and keep covered.
For the Eggs:
  1. I like to fry my eggs one at a time. Heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil per egg in a medium nonstick frying pan over medium-high heat. Once oil is shimmering crack the egg into the middle of the oil. Season with salt and black pepper. Turn off heat and let cook, undisturbed 1-2 minutes. Flip if you want an over easy egg and finish cooking to your liking. Repeat with remaining eggs.
To Serve:
  1. Divide potatoes between 2-4 plates, depending on how many you are serving. Place 2 eggs on each plate and top each egg with the different salsas. Sprinkle a little queso fresco over the top if you want, serve immediately.
Notes
To make both salsas at the same time, roast the tomatillo salsa vegetables on one rack and the beets on another rack in the oven simultaneously.

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Knowing that this recipe worked for you is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

Apps, Comida Latina, Mains, Recipes

Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries

March 21, 2017
Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries Recipe from @holajalapeno

How do you moms out there deal with getting stuff done? I’m serious, I need your advice because I’m dealing with a constant tug-of-war between working and being (and I mean mentally present) with my kids.

I’m not talking about the daily chore stuff of laundry, dinner, etc but the work from home stuff, the I need to do this for me and only me kind of stuff. I’ve been doing this work from home thing with various levels of success for a long time now and I’m still not sure how to do it right. To do it in a way that I feel honors my role of being a mother and a woman with an independent career. Any tips? I’d really like to hear them. I know from the outside it’s easy to think other women have their shit all kinds of together but that’s what’s so beautiful about having these conversations and being real with each other, so in all honesty I’d love your help.

Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries Recipe from @holajalapeno

This all relates to black mole fries, I promise and here’s how: Being real and honest women is also what I adore about one my favorite podcasts Super Mamás. The show is hosted by sisters Paulina Lopez Velazquez and Bricia Lopez-Maytorena. They get down to the real nitty-gritty of life and cover every topic under the sun from bilingual struggles to miscarriage to shitty mom moments. These two incredible women also help run their families other businesses; the James Beard award winning Oaxacan restaurant, Guelaguetza, their Mole business, and their Michelada mix business. Long story short, I can imagine they both know what I’m talking about you can imagine how honored and psyched I was when they asked if I would like to come up with a little something-something using their mole! See? Fries!

Please, please, please don’t be intimidated about these fries. I know just looking at the recipe it looks crazy. I mean who spends over 4 hours making fries?!! But most of it is time you are chilling, waiting for the beef to slowly braise in the oven (a step you can also do the day before if you want to). Let’s break them down piece by piece shall we?

How to Make the Black Mole Sauce

Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries Recipes from @holajalapeno

Using Guelaguetza’s Black Mole Paste makes preparing the mole sauce super easy, you just need to add a bit of tomato, some broth, a hunk of chocolate, and some salt. After the sauce is made pour it over some browned boneless short ribs, cover, and slowly braise in the oven until they are tender and falling apart.

Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries Recipe from @holajalapeno

How To Make the Fries

Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries

Making the fries are pretty simple, just toss some frozen French fries with a few spices and salt and bake in the oven. Once they are done you can move on to the fun part—the toppings!!

Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries Recipe from @holajalapeno

The Toppings

This recipe looks really long because I wanted to give you guys several ideas for toppings. I added big, fat lima beans, caramelized onions, aged white Cheddar cheese, and sour cream. I also made some quick marinated tomatoes with sliced serrano chiles, cilantro, and scallions. You can be as creative as you’d like or make them super simple too, make them your own!

Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries Recipe from @holajalapeno

To find out more about all three Guelaguetza mole pastes, how to buy it and more recipes using it, check out their store.

Loaded Black Mole Braised Beef Fries
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Oven-baked French fries topped with Oaxacan black mole braised beef, giant white beans, Cheddar, sour cream and more.
Author:
Serves: 6-8 Servings
Ingredients
For the Beef:
  • 1 large tomato, cored and quartered
  • 3 tablespoons Oaxacan Black Mole Paste
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • 1 quarter piece Ibarra chocolate
  • 1 pound boneless short ribs
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
For the Beans:
  • ½ cup dried lima beans
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon black peppercorns
For the Onions:
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, chopped
For the Tomatoes:
  • 1 large tomato, chopped
  • 1 scallion, minced
  • 1 serrano chile, thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon minced cilantro
  • 1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lime juice
For the Fries:
  • 1 (24-ounce) bag frozen French fries
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground California chile powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ½ teaspoon ground white pepper
  • 1 cup grated sharp white Cheddar cheese
Additional Toppings:
  • Crumbled queso fresco
  • micro greens
  • sour cream
  • lime wedges
Instructions
To Make the Beef:
  1. Heat oven to 300°F.
  2. Place the tomato in a small saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a simmer and cook until softened, about 10 minutes. Strain and blend until smooth in a blender (careful to cover the blender with a folded paper towel and not the lid which could explode with the hot liquid).
  3. Strain tomato liquid back into the saucepan. Add mole paste, broth, chocolate, and season with salt (about ½ teaspoon depending on your broth, paste, tastes, etc.) Bring to a simmer and whisk until smooth. Remove from heat.
  4. Season beef generously with salt and pepper on all sides. Heat oil in a frying pan until shimmering. Add beef and brown on all sides, about 7 minutes total. Transfer to a baking dish, pour mole sauce over the beef and cover the dish with foil.
  5. Braise the beef in the oven until very tender and falling apart, about 1½- 2 hours. Shred beef in the pan then set aside. This step can be done a day in advance, uncover, let cool, then cover again with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
For the Beans:
  1. Rinse beans and place in a small saucepan. Cover with about 2 inches of water. Add bay leaf and black peppercorns and bring to a simmer. Cook until soft, about 30 minutes. Season the cooking water with salt and let cool in the liquid until ready to use. Strain beans before adding to the fries.
For the Onions:
  1. Heat oil in a medium frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onions and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until caramelized and brown, about 10 minutes, adjusting the heat if necessary so they don't burn. Set aside.
For the Tomatoes:
  1. Toss the tomatoes with the scallion, chile, cilantro, and lime juice. Season with salt and set aside.
For the Fries:
  1. Heat oven to 425°F and arrange a rack in the upper third.
  2. Combine fries, oil, salt, chile powder, coriander, and white pepper in a large bowl. Toss until fries are well coated then spread them out in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  3. Bake until crisp and browned, about 30 minutes.
  4. Leave on the baking sheet or transfer to a large serving dish and cover with beef, some of the mole sauce, strained beans, caramelized onions, and Cheddar cheese.
  5. Return fries to oven and bake until cheese is melted, about 5 minutes. Remove and top with tomatoes, and any or all of the additional toppings.
Notes
You may or may not use all the toppings for the fries. Add the braised beef, beans, onions, and cheese to your liking. Leftovers of any of these make awesome tacos!

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Knowing that this recipe worked for you is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

Comida Latina, Mains, Recipes

Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken

March 3, 2017
Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken Recipe

This post has been sponsored by Wish-Bone and Tyson. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken Recipe

On Monday I found myself smack-dab in the Hispanic food aisle at Kroger and picked up a few things to fill out a rice bowl. As I’ve pointed out before rice is my everyday-cooking savior. A rice bowl full of goodies is just the type of meal that is perfect for our house. Rice bowls allow for variation by letting the kids pick and choose which ingredients they want in their bowls, and I still only have to cook one dinner.

Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken Recipe

A Rice Bowl Full of Goodies

In an ideal world I would make dinner from an actual recipe I want to try every night. The reality is most evenings I want to spend about 10 minutes in the kitchen and I don’t think I’m alone in this sentiment. That’s what I love about this rice bowl idea, it includes a mixture of home-cooked ingredients like charred peppers and freshly steamed grains with high-quality store bought ingredients like Tyson Applewood Smoked Chicken Strips and Wish-Bone EVOO Garlic and Basil salad dressing.

Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken Recipe

Add Some Homemade Tortilla Strips

I am huge texture junkie when it comes to my meals so of course I had to add plenty of crunch to this bowl. There is a crisp salad element from crunchy baby Romaine leaves and the perfect amount of snap from a few baked corn tortilla strips. I think I’ve professed my love for TortillaLand tortillas before but if you haven’t tried them, you should. They might be a little hard to find because unlike typical store-bought tortillas, TortillaLand tortillas are uncooked, which means they have to stay refrigerated (I found mine in the refrigerator section of the Hispanic food aisle at Kroger).

Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken Recipe

Like a Chile Relleno…. but Much Healthier

This rice bowl has all the flavors of a cheesy chile relleno but you know, much healthier. Combining quinoa with the rice adds essential amino acids to the mix, not to mention a burst of burgundy color if you use red quinoa like I did. Cooked and ready to go the Tyson smoked chicken is a super-convenient source of added protein. The fresh lettuce, tomato, and avocado are vitamin and mineral powerhouses. The Wish-Bone dressing is velvety and delicious and full of healthy fats from extra virgin olive oil.

Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken Recipe

If you have leftovers this rice bowl would also pack nicely for an office lunch. Am I seeing dinner plans forming for Sunday and lunch plans for Monday?

Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken Recipe

Smoky Chile Relleno Rice Bowl with Chicken
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
All the flavors of a cheesy chile relleno tucked into a powerhouse of a rice bowl with smoked chicken, charred chiles, queso fresco, and a quinoa-rice mix.
Author:
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 cup uncooked jasmine rice
  • ½ cup uncooked quinoa (I used red quinoa)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 large poblano pepper
  • 2 TortillaLand corn tortillas
  • 1 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • ⅓ cup Wish-Bone EVOO Garlic and Basil Dressing, plus about ¼-1/2 cup more for drizzling
  • 1 package Tyson Applewood Smoked Chicken Strips
  • ½ cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 small head baby romaine leaves, washed and dried
  • 2 ripe avocadoes, peeled, pitted, and sliced
  • ½ cup queso fresco or feta cheese
Instructions
  1. Heat broiler to high.
  2. Combine rice and quinoa in a fine mesh strainer and rinse with cold water until water runs clear. Transfer to a medium saucepan add water and a pinch of salt and bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
  3. Reduce heat to a low simmer, cover and cook undisturbed for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let sit, covered for 10 more minutes. Fluff with a fork and set aside.
  4. Place poblano pepper on a baking sheet and broil until skin is charred and blackened on all sides, turning frequently, about 5-8 minutes. This can also be done over a gas flame.
  5. Put oven on bake and heat oven to 400°F. Transfer pepper to a heatproof bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let sit until cool enough to handle, about 5-10 minutes. Once cool, remove all the blackened skin, the stem, and any seeds. Slice into thin strips.
  6. Cut tortillas into thin strips, place on a baking sheet, toss with oil and season with salt. Spread into a single layer on the baking sheet and bake until crispy, about 10-15 minutes.
  7. Toss rice and quinoa mixture with the ⅓ cup of Garlic and Basil dressing and divide rice among 4 bowls.
  8. Combine chicken, cherry tomatoes, and poblano strips then divide the chicken mixture evenly between the bowls.
  9. Divide Romaine lettuce, avocado, queso fresco, and tortilla strips between the bowls. Drizzle 1-2 tablespoon or so of dressing over everything and serve.

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

Comida Latina, Dairy Free, Mains, Recipes

Freezer-Friendly Picadillo Enchiladas

February 15, 2017
Freezer-Friendly Picadillo Enchiladas Recipe

If there is an easier way to get a homemade, hand-rolled, red-sauced enchilada in my mouth I would want to know what that is. Homemade enchiladas are so good! But also so time-consuming, which is why I rarely make them.

Freezer-Friendly Picadillo Enchiladas Recipe

But then I had an epiphany, one that made me so happy I didn’t even give the lady who is always trying to spread her “strictly homeopathic remedies” advice around at Hiro’s ninja class the stink eye last Tuesday when I thought of it. You know the type, let’s just call her “Annoying Mom” we all know one. By the way, did I tell you Hiro is taking ninja class? It is so stinking cute, he’s all smiles, somersaults, and thumbs-ups.

My epiphany, which is really nothing new—more like a “duh” moment than an “ah-ha”—was that the next time I go to the effort of making enchiladas I should make two pans. One for the freezer and one to eat right away. Why have I not been doing that every single time? I ask you.

Freezer-Friendly Picadillo Enchiladas Recipe

I adore enchiladas of all sorts but these particular enchiladas are the king of comfort food. Stuffed with picadillo (read: ground beef, potatoes, carrots, spices, even a little beer) and covered in homemade red sauce, they are exactly what you want on a chilly, late-winter’s night. Knowing a pan of that is in your freezer is better than a shot of tequila to calm your stressed and tired soul. Which brings me to the freezing part.

Freezer-Friendly Picadillo Enchiladas Recipe

Tips For Freezing the Enchiladas

How you freeze and defrost these picadillo enchiladas is going to depend strictly on your baking dish. If you freeze them in a glass baking dish (like the Princess House one I used) you have to thaw them in the refrigerator or microwave before baking. The temperature change will make the glass shatter and you don’t want that. I’ve exploded glass pans before, it’s not the slightest bit cool. After they are thawed, follow the recipe’s baking instructions as written.

Freezer-Friendly Picadillo Enchiladas Recipe

However, if you have a ceramic or stainless steel pan you can bake the enchiladas straight from the freezer which is pretty darn handy if you forgot to take them out to defrost them and are like, I don’t know, super starving. Bake them for 15 minutes covered, remove the plastic wrap and foil and bake for another 15 uncovered or until hot all the way through and crispy on the edges.

Now On To Storage Containers

As I mentioned above, I have been thoroughly enjoying my new Princess House storage containers. I use recycled dairy-free butter containers as much as the next person, but I know that they are not the best health-wise for heating stuff up in the microwave or using after a few too many runs through the dishwasher which is why I love that these containers from Princess House are made from thermal shock-resistant glass. They can go in the freezer, refrigerator, microwave, and even the oven (up to 450°F) and pretty enough to serve at the table too. Princess House was nice enough to offer a giveaway: All three storage containers shown below (a $99 prize!) which I am hosting over on Instagram from 2/16-2/23 so go check that out!

Freezer Friendly Picadillo Enchiladas Recipe

Freezer-Friendly Picadillo Enchiladas
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Making a large-batch of enchiladas means you can make two pans and freeze one for later! The picadillo filling of ground beef and potatoes is pure comfort.
Author:
Serves: 12 servings
Ingredients
For the Filling:
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 2 medium red potatoes, peeled and chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground paprika
  • ½ cup beer
  • ½ cup chicken broth
  • 1 heaping tablespoon chopped epazote (or same amount fresh oregano or 1 teaspoon dried oregano leaves)
  • 3 tablespoons thinly sliced fresh mint leaves
For the Sauce:
  • 4 dried pasilla chiles
  • 8 ripe roma tomatoes
  • 1 yellow onion, quartered
  • 4 serrano chiles
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 2 teaspoons salt
For the Enchiladas:
  • ½ cup + 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 24 corn tortillas
  • Crumbled queso fresco or feta, for serving
  • Sour cream, for serving
  • Thinly sliced chiles, for serving
Instructions
To Make the Picadillo Filling:
  1. Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onion and garlic and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent. Add ground beef, potatoes, and carrots, and season again with salt and pepper. Cook until beef is browned.
  2. Add measured salt, cumin, paprika, beer, chicken broth, and epazote and bring to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, until liquid has cooked down and vegetables are tender, about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool. Once cooled, stir in the mint leaves. Picadillo can be made up to a day in advance.
To Make the Sauce:
  1. Set a small pan of water over high heat and bring to a boil.
  2. Remove stems from the dried chiles and remove as many seeds as possible. Rinse chiles under cold water removing the rest of the seeds.
  3. Heat a large cast iron skillet or comal over medium-high heat. Place chiles on the hot, dry pan and toast until all the water has evaporated off the chiles and they are beginning to smell fragrant (about 4 minutes), turning frequently. Transfer chiles to the pan of boiling water, submerge under the water, and remove from heat. Set aside until very soft, at least 15 minutes.
  4. Place tomatoes, onion quarters, and serrano chiles on the hot cast iron skillet over medium-high heat (you may need to do this in batches depending on the size of the skillet). Char the vegetables until they have blackened on all sides and are slightly softer, about 10 minutes. Remove stems from serrano chiles and remove seeds if you don't want the sauce to be spicy.
  5. Pour chicken broth into blender then add drained dried chiles, and charred vegetables (you may need to do this in batches depending on the size of your blender). Add salt and blend on high until smooth. Sauce can be made up to 3 days in advance.
To Make the Enchiladas:
  1. Heat oven to 400°F. Have 2 large plates and 2 (at least 7-x-11in) baking dishes near by.
  2. Heat ¼ cup of the oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Using tongs, add tortillas, one at a time, and lightly fry each tortilla until slightly soft and a bit crisp on the edges, about 15 seconds per side. Transfer tortillas to one of the plate until all have been fried, adding more oil, 1 tablespoon at a time, if the pan becomes dry.
  3. Once all the tortillas are fried there should be about 2 tablespoons of oil left in the pan, if not add enough to make 2 tablespoons or pour any extra into a heatproof container. Carefully add enchilada sauce to the pan (it will spatter) and stir until the spattering dies down. Let simmer about 5 minutes then turn the heat to very low.
  4. Spoon enough sauce in the bottom of each dish just to coat.
  5. Using tongs, dip one tortilla into the sauce and flip to coat in sauce. Transfer to the other large plate and place 2 tablespoons of picadillo on one edge. Roll tortilla around the filling then roll up to close. Lay enchilada in the baking dish and repeat with remaining tortillas and filling, coating each tortilla with sauce before filling and rolling it up.
  6. Place twelve enchiladas in each baking dish then divide any remaining sauce over the two dishes, spreading it over the enchiladas.
  7. If you are going to freeze one dish, cover the top tightly with plastic wrap, then cover the plastic wrap with foil. Place in freezer for up to one month. See post for instructions on how to bake from frozen.
  8. To bake the enchiladas, place, uncovered in the hot oven until crispy on the edges and warmed through, about 15 minutes.
  9. Serve immediately with a sprinkling of cheese and sour cream if you'd like and a few sliced chiles on top.

 

One More Thing

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

 

 

 

 

Mains, Recipes

Friends Who Fete: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

February 9, 2017
Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

Sometime between the holiday’s fading glow and spring’s first warm breezes lies a long, frigid stretch of nights when we huddled in our homes, hunker down from the cold and wind, and heat up leftovers for dinner. There is no better time than now to gather some friends together and throw a party full of cozy comfort food, delicious cocktails, and loads of laughter—An Italian Polenta Party!

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

When Aida of Salt & Wind suggested the idea to myself and Meg from This Mess Is Ours we answered with an enthusiastic, YES! I mean, I am never one to turn down an opportunity to cook and gather together with my friends, especially over creamy mountains of soft polenta and Aida’s sensational creamy pesto.

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

Throwing an Italian Polenta Party is a really fun way to entertain. All you have to do is invite some fun-loving friends, make a few appetizers, a simple cocktail, and then pour out the polenta onto a board in the middle of the table and let everyone dig in!

Here’s All You Need To Know To Throw Your Own Polenta Party

Fiesta: How to Throw An Italian Polenta Party

We all gathered on a late Saturday afternoon and Meg mixed up some sparkling Apple Basil and Prosecco Spritzer cocktails while Meredith finished her sweet herb and floral wreaths to line every plate. Aida arranged Fontina and Prosciutto Puff Pastry Squares and Mushroom Ragout Agrodolce Bites on a marbled wood board along with balsamic roasted apples, several types of cheese, and charcuterie. It was all just the beginning to the main event about to come: The Polenta!!

Italian Polenta Party Menu

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

Here is the rundown of the entire menu. We did one meat topping and one vegetarian topping to go with the polenta but you could always just pick one. It is all the little extras however that make it super fun, so try to have at least three or four different sauces or garnishes that your friends can add to their polenta. Included are the recipes to make these but you could easily make one or two and buy a couple more high-quality versions from the store. Or make the sauces and have toasted pine nuts and grated Parmesan or Pecorino on hand for generous sprinkling.

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

Drinks

Apple Basil and Prosecco Spritzer cocktails | This Mess Is Ours

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

Appetizers

Fontina and Prosciutto Puff Pastry Squares | Salt & Wind

Mushroom Ragout Agrodolce Bites | Salt & Wind

Nuts, Cheese, Sliced Charcuterie, Balsamic Roasted Apples, Crackers, and Fruit

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

The Polenta Board + A Salad

Escarole, Charred Mandarins, Toasted Almond Salad with Rosemary Balsamic Vinaigrette | Salt & Wind

Basic Creamy Polenta | Salt & Wind

Beer Braised Beef Barbacoa| ¡Hola! Jalapeño

Braised Chickpeas with Porcini and Tuscan Kale | This Mess Is Ours

Creamy Basil Pesto | Salt & Wind

Slow-Roasted Tomatoes | Salt & Wind

Red Pepper Romesco Sauce | Salt & Wind

Blood Orange Tart with Vanilla Mascarpone Recipe

Something Sweet

Blood Orange Tart with Vanilla Mascarpone | ¡Hola! Jalapeño

Serving the Polenta

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

For our party of 8 people Aida quadrupled this recipe and we had plenty of leftovers to take home (gratefully). The polenta is really nice because you can start it and then let it basically cook on its own, giving it a stir every now and again until it is ready.

To serve the polenta you’ll need a very large food-safe board. Meg had a gorgeous reclaimed wood board that ran the length of the table from Pasadenaville which worked perfectly as everyone had some polenta right in front of them at the table. A large wood cutting board or tray would also work. Just find your biggest food-safe board and pour the polenta out onto the it. Top half of the polenta with the barbacoa and half with the braised chickpeas and place it in the middle of the table for everyone to help themselves. Serve all the sauces and garnishes in small dishes scattered about the table so your friends can add what they please. Aida also made a dairy-free version of the polenta with chicken broth and olive oil instead of the butter, milk, and cheese.

The Place Settings

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

Our very talented friend Meredith created delicate mini wreaths made from fresh (and totally edible) herbs, olive leaves, and straw flowers. They look rustic and pretty on the plates and Louisa turned them into a darling little tiara after the party was over. Get all the details on how to make them here.

Shop The Party

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

Here are a few party essentials we can’t live without:

W/R/F Lab ceramics

Pasadenaville Polenta Board

Pink Shibori Napkins

Linen Napkins

Vintage Roly Poly Cocktail Glasses

Cheese Knives

Denim Cloth Table Covering

All Produce: Melissa’s Produce

Fiesta: How To Throw An Italian Polenta Party

A humongous thanks goes to Salt & Wind and This Mess Is Ours for all the photos.

Did you love this post? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

 

Comida Latina, Dairy Free, Mains, Recipes

Beer-Braised Beef Barbacoa

February 8, 2017
Beer-Braised Beef Barbacoa Recipe

Cooked in a mixture of dark beer, and spices this barbacoa is crazy tender. Serve with tortillas or over polenta like we did for our Italian Polenta Party.

Beer-Braised Beef Barbacoa Recipe

What is Barbacoa?

The term barbacoa has always confused me. The first time I heard it was in my early twenties as a sous chef at Mustard’s Grill in the Napa Valley. A few of my fellow cooks were gathered around discussing weekend party plans and announced they were going to do a barbacoa in their yard. Truly a weekend project, they dug a deep hole, filled it with smoldering wood and a baby goat then covered over the hole with agave leaves.

Beer Braised Beef Barbacoa Recipe

The meat roasted very slowly and about 8-10 hours later was shredded and served with an accompanying chile broth with which you’d brush the meat through before piling it into warm corn tortillas. This was a meal reserved for a grand celebration and one that my Mustard’s compadres offered to replicate for our wedding. Unfortunately we couldn’t get the go ahead from the our reception venue to follow through—something about not wanting a huge, gapping, smoking hole on their property—ridiculous.

Beer-Braised Beef Barbacoa Recipe

I was then later told it was only made with cow head and then Chipotle came along serving barbacoa in every nook and cranny of America (did they all have baby goat-sized holes in their parking lots? Were they really serving goat? Or even more interesting, cow’s head?) But now I’ve come to discover that barbacoa means beef to most people, more specifically tender, slow roasted succulent beef.

Beer-Braised Beef Barbacoa Recipe

A Much Easier Version

This recipe was inspired by my friend and fellow chef Susana who cooks her barbacoa in a beer and spice bath. The addition of molasses adds a subtle sweetness that is undetectable but also very much there if that makes any sense. It is about as easy as a recipe can possibly be—not one single shovel necessary. All you need is a sturdy blender, a large enough roasting dish, and a few hours then leave the oven to do all the work.

Even better, the slow cooking means an inexpensive cut of meat is actually preferable here making it a very budget-friendly way to feed a crowd. I’ve made this recipe using boneless beef brisket, boneless chuck roast, and even a clod roast which I got just because it was the cheapest roast at the market and I wanted to see if it would be as good as the most expensive brisket and guess what? It was! Any tough cut of meat would melt under all that beer and heat.

Beer-Braised Beef Barbacoa Recipe

I made this barbacoa recipe for an Italian Polenta Party I threw with Aida from Salt + Wind and Meg from This Mess is Ours. We piled the meat on top of the polenta straight from the tray with all those beautiful juices. Even though it is Mexican in origin it went beautifully with the sweet roasted tomatoes, grated hard Parmesan, and Aida’s silky romesco sauce. For more polenta party details head here!

Beer-Braised Beef Barbacoa Recipe

 

Beer-Braised Beef Barbacoa
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Cooked in a mixture of dark beer, and spices this barbacoa is crazy tender. Serve with tortillas or over polenta like we did for our Italian Polenta Party.
Author:
Serves: 6-8 servings
Ingredients
  • 5 pounds boneless beef brisket or chuck roast
  • 1 (12-ounce) bottle dark beer
  • 1 large red onion, chopped
  • 2 jalapeños, stemmed and sliced (remove seeds if you'd like it less spicy)
  • ½ cup cilantro leaves
  • ½ cup Italian parsley leaves, plus more for garnish
  • 9 epazote leaves, or ¼ cup fresh oregano leaves
  • 6 cloves garlic
  • ¼ cup blackstrap molasses
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 4 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 300°F and place roast in a large baking dish or roasting pan.
  2. Combine remaining ingredients in a blender starting with the beer (you may have to do this in batches depending on the size of your blender). Blend on high until all is pureed.
  3. Pour beer mixture over roast and move it around in the mixture to coat all sides. Cover tightly with aluminum foil and place in oven.
  4. Slow-roast the beef 3 hours, remove foil and return to the oven and let cook 30-45 minutes more or until the edges are browned and the meat easily pulls apart with a fork.
  5. Shred meat and mix with the sauce in the pan. Serve immediately with a generous sprinkling of Italian parsley leaves or let cool completely, cover and refrigerate for up to 5 days or freeze for up to 3 months.
  6. To reheat; place meat and sauce in a shallow pot and bring to a boil over medium heat.

Did you love this recipe? I want to know! Leave me a comment and snap a photo for Instagram. Tag @holajalapeno so I can see your beautiful creation! Your feedback is super important to me. If you run into trouble shoot me a message on Instagram and I’ll walk you through it.

Also, don’t forget to sign up for my weekly newsletter, lots of good stuff there too!

A huge thanks goes out to Salt + Wind and This Mess Is Ours for the photographs and WRF Lab for all the ceramics.

Comida Latina, Condiments and Salsas, Dairy Free, Mains, Recipes, Sandwiches

Chicken Milanesa Sandwiches with Basil-Lime Mayo

February 1, 2017
Chicken Milanesa Sandwich with Lime-Basil Mayo Recipe

One of my husband’s favorite things in the whole entire world (besides me of course, right?) is milanesa. Pork, beef, chicken milanesa, he loves it all. And most of all when we hit up a good torta or Mexican sandwich spot, a milanesa torta is always on order.

Chicken Milanesa Sandwich with Basil-Lime Mayo Recipe

Now a classic torta de milanesa this is not, but that’s okay, that’s not what I really do anyway—you know me. You won’t find the bun slathered with creamy beans and we are using a thin piece of chicken breast, not steak but I guarantee this sandwich is no less terrific and the sentiment of soft bun, creamy spread, crispy, pan-fried meat is all still there.

Chicken Milanesa Sandwich with Basil-Lime Mayo Recipe

Make a Pickle

Instead of a sharp slice of red onion I’ve added crunch in the form of sweet and sour fennel and carrot pickles. This recipe is based on my favorite way to make pickles which is as easy as boiling a few ingredients that I know you already have in your cupboard, pouring it over some vegetables (this recipe can be used to pickle anything from radishes to avocados—yes, really), and sticking the whole shebang in the fridge. Let them sit at least overnight in the refrigerator if you can to help the veggies really soak up the flavors.

Chicken Milanesa Sandwich with Basil-Lime Mayo Recipe

These pickles are so delicious I found myself making a pile of them on my plate so I could eat a salad-like forkful with every bite of chicken milanese sandwich. I am a sucker for crunch so that might have something to do with it, but still, very good. So try it!!

A Couple of Tips

As for breading the chicken (and in my opinion anything that is going to be fried) I am a Panko girl til I die. Armando makes fun of me for buying Panko by the case at Costco but it is the far superior in the crispy-crunch department and we’ve already discussed how happy that makes me.

Chicken Milanesa Sandwich with Basil-Lime Mayo Recipe

Sometimes you can find thin chicken breast filets ready to go but if not follow the instructions in the recipe to get them thin and ready for breading. You might only need two chicken breast to make four servings if they are super huge. Cutting them in half horizontally will make it easier to pound out thin, then cut them into 4 pieces trying to make the pieces the same size as your bread rolls so you don’t end up with a dry hunk of chicken-less bread at the end.
Chicken Milanesa Sandwich with Basil-Lime Mayo Recipe

Chicken Milanese Sandwiches with Basil-Lime Mayo
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Crispy Panko-breaded chicken milanesa tucked inside a fluffy roll with pickled fennel and carrots and swathed in a creamy basil and lime mayonnaise.
Author:
Serves: 4
Ingredients
For the Fennel-Carrot Pickles
  • 1 large head fennel (about 1 pound), bruised outer pieces removed
  • 3 small carrots (about ½ pound), peeled and trimmed
  • 1 jalapeno, stemmed
  • 1½ teaspoons cumin seeds
  • 1 cup white distilled vinegar
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
For the Basil-Lime Mayo
  • 2 cups basil leaves
  • ½ cup mayonnaise
  • juice of ½ a lime
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
For the Chicken:
  • 14 ounces boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 lime, zested
  • 1 large egg
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup vegetable oil, for frying
For the Sandwich:
  • 4 bolillo or hoagie buns
  • baby spinach
Instructions
To Make the Fennel-Carrot Pickles:
  1. Slice all the vegetables paper-thin using a mandolin if you have one, or sharp knife. Place in a large bowl.
  2. Place cumin seeds in a small saucepan and toast over medium heat, shaking pan occasionally until they are fragrant, about 2 minutes. Add vinegar, sugar, water, and salt and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
  3. Pour over vegetables and let cool at room temperature for 1 hour. Transfer to a container with a tight-sealing lid and refrigerate overnight. Pickles will keep refrigerated for 2 months.
For the Basil-Lime Mayo:
  1. Combine basil leaves, mayonnaise, lime juice, salt, and pepper in the bowl of a food processor and blend until smooth.
For the Chicken:
  1. Heat oven to 300°F.
  2. Cut chicken breasts in half horizontally. Place one half on a cutting board and cover with plastic wrap. Pound chicken until it is ½-inch thick using a meat mallet or anything else heavy (rolling pin or wine bottle would also work). Repeat with remaining chicken.
  3. Cut the pounded chicken into 4 equal pieces if you do not have 4 already.
  4. Season chicken with salt and pepper.
  5. Place Panko in a shallow dish. Season with salt and pepper and add lime zest. Mix seasoning into Panko.
  6. Crack egg into a separate shallow dish. Add 1 tablespoon of water, season with salt and pepper and whisk until smooth.
  7. Place flour in a third shallow dish. Season with salt and pepper and mix to combine. Place one or two chicken pieces in the flour mixture and coat on all sides.
  8. Transfer floured chicken to the egg wash and turn to coat. Now place in the Panko mixture and press to coat with Panko on all sides. Repeat with remaining chicken pieces.
  9. Line a baking sheet with paper towels.
  10. Heat ¼ cup vegetable oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Once shimmering, test with a pinch of Panko. If the oil is hot enough the Panko should sizzle immediately.
  11. Slide 1 or 2 Panko-coated chicken breast into the hot oil (don't crowd) and let cook, undisturbed until deep golden brown and crisp, about 3 minutes. Flip and cook the other side for 3 minutes more.
  12. Transfer chicken to the baking sheet and place in the oven to keep warm while you cook the rest of the chicken. You can place the rolls in the oven too if you want them toasted a little bit.
  13. If most of the oil has been used in the pan add a couple more tablespoons of oil to cook the rest of the chicken pieces.
To Make the Sandwiches:
  1. Slice each roll in half and spread some basil-lime mayo on the top and bottom of the rolls. Put a bit of baby spinach on the bottom half then top with a piece of chicken. Pile some pickles on top and cover with the top bun.

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All ceramics by W/R/F Lab