Sunday, January 8, 2006

South of the Border – January 2006

Diva: Lovina

Drinks: Erin

The Perfect Margarita

Scale ingredients to servings
1-2 shots Jose Cuervo
1 shot Triple Sec
1 shot orange juice
1 shot Rose's lime juice

Rim a large, chilled margarita cocktail glass with lime and salt. Place ingredients in glass with about six ice cubes. Stir and garnish with a slice of lime.

Appetizer: Stacey
Queso Blanco Mexican White Cheese Dip

2 c Monterey jack cheese, shredded
8 oz. canned green chilies
½ c half-and-half
4 T onions, chopped fine
4 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp salt
1 Serrano pepper, chopped fine (optional)
2 T fresh cilantro, chopped fine

Put all ingredients in a double boiler and heat on medium. Cook until melted and well blended, stirring occasionally. Serve with tortilla chips or hot flour tortillas. Enjoy!!

Salad: Nicole
Black bean and corn salada/salsa

1 can corn
2 cans diced tomatoes with green chilies
1 can black beans, rinsed
1 squeezed lime
1-2 avocados, diced
bunch of cilantro

In a large bowl, combine all canned ingredients. Squeeze in the lime juice. Dice and add the avocado. Using your (I cut it with my kitchen shears, snip in the cilantro (use – starting with the stems as they containwhich have the most flavor).

Stir and serve, enjoy with corn tortilla chips.

Soup: Ashley
Yucatan Lime Soup

2 T olive oil
6 cloves garlic, sliced
6 small, skinless, boneless chicken halves, cut into ½ inch wide strips
1 ½ tsp dried oregano
9 c chicken or veggie broth
½ c fresh lime juice
1 ½ c coarsely crushed tortilla chips
2 Avocados, peeled, pitted, diced
3 tomatoes, chopped
3 green onions
chopped fresh cilantro
minced jalapeno chilies
lime slices
½ T cumin

Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add garlic and stir for 20 seconds. Add chicken and oregano to the pot. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté for 3 minutes. Add broth and lime juice and bring to a simmer. Reduce heat to medium low, simmer gently until chicken is cooked through (~8 minutes). Season soup to taste with salt and pepper. Divide crushed tortilla chips among the bowls. Ladle soup into bowls, top soup with avocado, tomatoes, green onions, cilantro and jalapenos. Garnish with lime slices and serve.

Side Dish: Tiffany

Refried Beans and Spanish Brown Rice

Refried Beans
2 ½ c of dry pinto beans (about 1 lb or 450gm)
3 quarts of water
½ c chopped onion (optional)
2 T olive oil
¼ c water
Salt to taste

Rinse the beans in water and remove any small stones, pieces of dirt, or bad beans. Put beans into a pot and cover beans with at least 3 inches of water - about 3 quarts for 2 1/2 cups of dry beans. Soak over night. Rinse and cook in the am. Bring to a boil and then lower heat to simmer, covered, for about 2 1/2 hours. The cooking time will vary depending on the batch of beans you have. The beans are done when they are soft and the skin is just beginning to break open.

Strain the beans from the cooking water.

Add the onions and oil to a wide frying pan on medium high heat. Cook onions until translucent. Add the strained beans and about a 1/4 cup of water to the pan. Using a potato masher, mash the beans in the pan, while you are cooking them, until they are a rough purée. Add more water if necessary to keep the fried beans from getting too dried out. Add salt to taste.

Spanish Rice

2 c cooked brown rice or barley
1 c tomato sauce
1 bunch green onions, chopped (white part)
1 tsp chili powder
½ tsp ground cumin
½ tsp oregano
pinch cayenne, to taste
Chopped cilantro or Italian parsley for garnish (optional)

Combine the grains, tomato sauce, onions and spices in a pot. Bring to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer 5 minutes. Garnish with cilantro or parsley if desired.

Entree: Tamara
Brazilian Vegetable Feijoada

¾ tsp red pepper flakes
3 tsp ground cumin
2 tablespoons dried thyme
6 medium sweet potatoes, peeled, sliced lengthwise, then cut into 1/4-inch, thick slices
3 leeks
3 red bell peppers, seeded and sliced lengthwise, into 1/2-inch, wide slices
3 yellow bell peppers, seeded and sliced lengthwise, into 1/2-inch, wide slices
3 medium yellow onions, seeded and sliced lengthwise, into 1/2-inch, wide slices
6 T lime juice
3 large tomatoes, sliced into 1/4-inch, thick slices
6 (16 ounce) cans black beans
lime slices (to garnish)
orange slices (to garnish)

Heat a little veggie broth or water and add dried red peppers or crushed red pepper flakes, cumin and thyme; lower heat and cook 1 minute. Add sweet potatoes; cook 5 minutes. Add leeks; cook 5 minutes more. Stir in bell peppers and onion, cook 5 minutes. Add lime juice, combine well and cook 5 minutes more. Add tomato slices. Coat saucepan with nonstick cooking spray; set over low heat. Add beans and cook, stirring, until hot, about 3 minutes; drain. Place beans in a casserole or serving bowl; add vegetables. (I put rice at the bottom of the casserole dish and then the beans and then the vegetables.) Garnish with lime or orange slices, cilantro sprigs; serve at once.

Dessert: Michelle

2 large eggs at room temperature
3 tsp amarretto
½ c sugar
1 c flour
2 tb cocoa powder
1tsp cinnamon
1 T baking powder
¼ cup slivered almonds

Pre-heat oven to 350. Butter and flour 9-in baking pan.
Combine the eggs, amaretto, and sugar. Whisk at a low speed gradually increasing for 5-7 minutes, until it is light and foamy and tripled in volume.
Mix remaining ingredients in a separate bowl. Slowly add dry mix, 1/3 at a time, folding in gently. Add almonds last.
Scrape batter into the pan, leveling the top.
Bake for 20-25 min, until the top is evenly browned and firm when touched lightly in the center.
Remove the cake from the oven, and run a knife along the edges. Invert the cake on a large cutting board.
Raise the oven temp to 375
Cut the cake into 3 strips, cut each strip into ¾ in slices. Place slices on a large cookie sheet. Bake for 5-10 minutes, or until toasted and golden.
Allow to cool on rack. Store in tightly covered container in cool dry place.

WildCard: Sara

Pico de Gallo Salsa

2 c mixed cabbage, chopped fine or grated (Savoy is best, I also used green and purple although if not eaten quickly the purple will bleed.)
1 large carrot, shredded
8-12 red and white radishes diced
8 green onions cut into thin rounds, whites only
½ c cilantro leaves, minced
1 Serrano pepper, minced
1 jalapeno pepper, minced
1 freshly squeezed lime
3 T rice vinegar
3 T olive oil (extra virgin is best)
salt and pepper to taste

Mix vegetable ingredients in a bowl. Pour rice wine, oil and lime juice over ingredients. Add spices. Eat with chips or on the side of any Mexican dish.