4/27/2021 0 Comments
Cinco de Mayo: All-Star Edition
Whether you don't want to brave the Cinco de Mayo crowds or have been patiently waiting to host safely guests post-quarantine, Cinco de Mayo is the perfect time for a fiesta. Ahead, we've rounded up some of the best Mexican dishes to whip up from our All-Star Alum!
Mexican-style Corn with Lime, Ancho and Queso Fresco by Chef Michelle Bernstein
Sweet Potato Tacos by Chef Wes Avila
Ingredients for Almond Salsa
Place rinsed potatoes in a large saucepan or 6-quart stockpot and cover them with cold water. Salt the water until it's salty as the sea and turn up the heat to a gentle simmer. Simmer the potatoes until they're just cooked to when you can stick a knife into one and it comes out clean - about 12 minutes. Drain and set the potatoes aside. When they're cool enough to handle, slice them and set aside. You'll reheat them in the pan later.
While the potatoes are simmering, start making the salsa. Heat a cast-iron pan over medium-low heat. When the pan is hot, add lard or canola oil. Once melted, add the chiles de arbol. When the chiles are browned all over and smelling toasty, add the garlic and the almonds. Don't burn the garlic! When it's slightly golden brown, add the tomatillos, bell peppers, a teaspoon salt, and 1/2 cup water to the pan. Cover and cook until the tomatillos are mushy - they should split easily and break apart when you push them with a spoon.
Take the pan off the heat and using a slotted spoon add all solid ingredients to the blender and reserve the cooking liquid in the pan. Add olive oil, red wine vinegar, and the habanero half of it if you don't want it too spicy, or if you don't mind a little heat and don't have any plans for the other half, just throw the whole pepper into the blender. Cover the blender well and watch that you don't touch the hot chile seeds during this part. Blend until the salsa is nice and smooth, and season to taste with salt. You want a little acidity, plus the sweetness from the bell peppers and heat from the habanero and chiles de arbol. Check the consistency of the salsa and add some of the leftover cooking liquid from the pan to reach desired consistency. It should be like a milkshake.
Put your largest cast iron pan on medium-high heat and add a few tablespoons butter, enough to coat, until it's melty and bubbling but not burning. Working in batches, add layers of potatoes to the pan. You want both sides of each potato slice to get a little browned, but not tough or crispy. Add a couple springs of thyme to the pan and cook the potatoes until golden brown. Flip them and brown the other side. Set browned potatoes aside on a plate and cover with foil to keep them warm.
Heat up your tortillas.
Plate your tacos. On top of the two tortillas, add in this order: 3-4 slices of potato, a tablespoon of salsa, a tablespoon of feta, 1/2 tablespoon corn nuts and a sprinkle of scallions, and enjoy!
Grilled Shrimp and Chorizo Tostada by Chef Aarón Sánchez
In a cast iron skillet (or heavy bottomed sauté pan), cook the Cacique Pork Chorizo over medium heat, breaking it up with a wooden spoon, until lightly browned and cooked through, approximately 7 to 10 minutes. Remove the chorizo from the pan and set aside. Reserve 2 tbsp of the rendered chorizo fat, then discard the rest and wipe down the pan.
Season the shrimp on both sides with salt and pepper. Preheat the same pan to medium high heat, add back the reserved chorizo fat, and add the shrimp in an even layer. Be careful not to crowd the pan by doing this in batches if necessary.
Cook the shrimp for about 2 minutes on each side, until each side is evenly seared.
Add the chorizo back into the pan and stir everything together for approximately one to two minutes, then remove from heat.
To assemble the tostada, divide the shrimp and chorizo equally among the four shells, drizzle with the Cacique Crema Mexicana and garnish with cilantro. Serve warm with a lime wedge.
Cola-Marinated Flank Steak with Frito Chilaquiles by Chef Jamie Bissonnette
In a 9x13 inch glass or ceramic baking dish, whisk the cola with the green curry paste and sliced Fresno chiles. Add the flank steaks and turn to coat thoroughly. Let the steaks stand at room temperature for 15 minutes, turning occasionally.
Light a grill or preheat a grill pan and oil the grate. Remove the flank steaks from the marinade and pat them dry. Brush the steaks with canola oil and season generously with salt and pepper. Grill over moderately high heat, turning once, until the steaks are medium-rare, about 8 minutes total. Transfer the steaks to a work surface and let rest for 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet heat 1 tablespoon of canola oil. Add the salsa verde and bring to a simmer. Cook over moderate heat, stirring, until slightly reduced and thickened, about 4 minutes. Add the Fritos to the salsa and cook, stirring, until the chips are soft with some crunchy bits but not falling apart, about 2 minutes, Stir in 1/4 cup of the cilantro and transfer the chilaquiles to a platter.
Thinly slice the steaks across the grain. Top the chilaquiles with the sliced steak and any accumulated meat juices. Scatter the avocados, Cotija cheese and remaining 1/4 cup of cilantro on top and serve immediately with lime wedges.
Tortilla Espanola by Chef Seamus Mullen
Lightly beat the eggs and season with a generous sprinkle of salt. Set aside.
In a 10-inch nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-low heat until it's warm. Add the onion and garlic and gently cook until the vegetables are translucent, about 15 minutes. Add the potatoes; cook for 20 minutes until the potatoes have completely fallen apart but the potatoes and onions haven't taken on any color.
Remove the pan from the heat and strain the mixture through a colander, reserving the olive oil for the next time you make a tortilla. (If you continue to use this same oil, each tortilla you make will taste better than the last.) Once you've strained the potato-and-onion mixture, season it with salt and add the eggs, mixing until thoroughly combined.
Heat the same skillet over medium-low heat. Add one tablespoon of olive oil from the reserved potato-and-onion mixture to the pan. Pour the potato-and-egg mixture into the pan and let it cook for 2 minutes without touching the pan, until the bottom begins to set up. Gently shake the pan to release the eggs from the bottom; using a rubber spatula, gently pull the mixture away from the edge to make sure it isn't sticking at all. Cook until the bottom is set but the top is still very wet, about 5 minutes.
Place a large, flat plate on top of the skillet, hold it tightly and, using one quick motion (probably best to perform this over the sink the first few times), flip the pan over and let the tortilla fall onto the plate.
And what's Cinco de Mayo without a drink? We hope your celebrations are tasty, boozy and festive! Happy Cinco de Mayo!
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