Fried Green Tomatoes with Three Chile Sauce

Fried Green TomatoesThe other night I made enchiladas.  And unfortunately I don’t have a picture of them, otherwise I would have obviously shared the recipe with you.  But, I will share the chile sauce recipe, because you can use this on any type of enchiladas you wish.  I made them with chicken, onions and cheese.  If you have a hankering for a vegetarian version, well, go ahead and use this sauce to coat them.  It is spectacular.  That’s why I chose to top the tomatoes with the sauce too, and I plan to use this sauce as a base for other things too, or maybe just as a flavor enhancer.  The deep rich smokiness elevates a lentil soup, perhaps, to plain ole good for you, to hell yeah! for your taste buds.

Fried green tomatoes are super simple.  But I thought I would include this recipe, so you could have the sauce too!  So, you craving huevos rancheros?  Add this sauce to them.  Maybe some nachos?  Bring this out as a dip.  Or maybe you want to make a butternut squash soup.  Well, this sauce will lend the perfect balance to the sweetness of the squash… endless possibilities, one sauce!

So here’s what you’re going to need:

1 large green tomato

1 egg, beaten

1/2 cup cornmeal

1/2 cup olive oil

Maldon Sea Salt

For the sauce:

3 guajillo peppers

2 ancho peppers

3 new mexico peppers

1 cup soaking liquid

1 large onion, chopped

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 tsp achiote powder

1 tsp ground coriander

2 tsp garlic salt

1 tsp onion powder

1 small can diced tomatoes

3 tsp brown sugar

4 tsp cumin powder (if you don’t like cumin as much as I do, add less.  But trust me on this!)

1 tsp dried oregano

1 1/2 cups chicken stock

1 dash ground chipotle

1 bay leaf

Salt and Pepper, to taste

 

To make the sauce:

On a comal, or griddle set to medium high heat, toast the dried peppers on both sides, about 1 minute per side, until fragrant.  Don’t let them burn, if they do, chuck them out because they will just become bitter.  Slice the toasted chiles, and remove seeds and veins.  Then place in 3 cups boiling water, and soak for about 20-30 minutes, or until tender.  Strain them, and reserve one cup of the soaking liquid.  Puree the chiles with the soaking liquid and reserve.

In a large skillet over medium high heat, add the olive oil, onions and achiote powder.  Saute for about 7 minutes or until the onions are softened.  Add the minced garlic and sauté another 2-3 minutes, or until fragrant.  Add the rest of the ingredients and bring to a boil.  Add the pureed chiles, and lower the heat to medium and let cook for about 15 minutes, or until thickened slightly.  Taste and adjust seasonings.  Reserve the sauce for whatever you need.  Will keep in the refrigerator in an airtight container for up to a week.

For the tomatoes:

Slice the tomato in 1 inch thick slices.  Arrange the slices on a paper towel and let the water from the tomato be soaked up.  Beat the egg in a small bowl, and add the cornmeal on a plate.

In a small frying pan, heat the olive oil over high heat.  When it is very hot, dip the tomato in the egg, then coat both sides with the cornmeal and fry for about 2-3 minutes per side.  Drain on a fresh piece of paper towel.

When they are all done, arrange on a platter, sprinkle with sea salt and dollops of the chile sauce.

From my kitchen to yours,

Carla

 

 

Beef Fajitas

My daughter is a good sport.  She loves and eats the food I put on her plate.  But, I also cave in to her personal requests, and one of her favorites (besides pasta and pizza) is Fajitas.   I usually make them with chicken, but rarely do I make them with beef.  Why, I wonder?  Not sure about that, but making this at home sure beats eating the overdone and super salty ones you can get at any restaurant.  It’s so simple, the only real prep work is marinating them an hour before hand, but with just a teeny bit of preparation, you can make this classic at home too.

I marinated them with a few of my favorite ingredients, lime juice, cilantro and chilies.  But as usual, feel free to add any other ingredients that you love!   We did a veritable smorgasbord of items, home-made salsa, my boyfriend’s kick-ass guacamole, some sour cream, grated cheese for my daughter, and some extra jalapeno’s for me!

Home made tomato salsa

Paolo’s kick ass Guacamole

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I love easy dinners like this.

Fresh, delicious and we all sit together and build our own fajita.

So here’s what you’re going to need:

Serves 4

1.5 lbs (750g) skirt or flank steak

1/4 cup olive oil

1 tbsp of ground cumin

Juice of one lime

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 jalapeño or 2 thai red chilies, minced (seeds and all!)

1 small bunch of cilantro, chopped

Salt and pepper to taste

1 large onion sliced

1/2 red pepper, sliced

1/2 green pepper, sliced

Flour or corn tortilla wraps, or you can do lettuce wraps too.

In a deep platter, add your beef, olive oil, cumin, lime juice, garlic, chilies, salt and pepper and cilantro.  Mix and coat the steak well, marinate for at least one hour in the fridge.

In the meantime, prepare the rest of the veggies and set aside.  Have a beer and call a friend while you’re waiting.  (Or anything else you need to get done!)

Pre-heat your oven to 100 degrees C.  Place a large skillet over high heat, and let it heat up.  Remove your steak from the marinade, and wipe off ass much as you can.  When the skillet is really hot, sear your steak, cooking for 3-4 minutes on either side, depending on thickness, cook less time or more.  If really thin, 1-2 minutes should do, if very thick, 5-6.  I like mine pretty rare in the center, so I do a quick searing.   Take your steak off the skillet, and tent in aluminum foil and place in your oven.

Now, in the same skillet, add just a teeny bit of oil, and cook the onion and peppers over high heat, 5-6 minutes.  I like mine pretty charred.  When done, switch off the heat, and take your steak out of the oven.  Slice it thinly, and make sure to pour any of the accumulated juices into the pan with your veggies, and place the sliced steak back in the skillet with the veggies and juice.

Serve hot on the skillet with tortilla or lettuce wraps, and all your “trimmings”.

From my kitchen to yours,

Carla