Saturday, December 26, 2015

Mr. Pibil

I'm going to go ahead and say that the Cochinita Pibil recipe in the May 2015 issue of "Saveur" makes some of the best tacos I've had in my own home. The recipe calls for cooking the pork wrapped in banana leaves. We had none and the pork turned out fantastic.  I cooked it on the stovetop in a Dutch oven with a layer of foil beneath the lid. 

It snowed an inch in 15 minutes as it grew dark. Bubb hauled over a pan of super cheese enchiladas. We drank mezcal and Rose', had a swell time and managed " to drive the cold winter away" for another long night.  

Party on, folks.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Christmas Achiote

In preparation for this evening's Christmas feast with the neighbor, I made some achiote paste last night.  Grinding annatto seeds, cumin, allspice and peppercorns, sifting the resulting powder and re-grinding the fines yields a fragrant orange dust.  When mixed with a little water, you end up with a cakey paste that resembles a Martian mud pie.  This will get mixed with smashed garlic, citrus juice, vinegar and salt, poured over pork shoulder and cooked slow and low in a Dutch oven.  Traditionally the pork would be wrapped in banana leaves and cooked over hot stones in a pit.  Lacking both banana leaves and a backyard roasting pit, we'll not know how Cochinita Pibil tacos are supposed to taste.  For that we'll have to build an oven once the ground thaws- or travel to the Yucatan to see how it's really done.  Merry Christmas to all!

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Easy Cake

Cakes elude me, but sometimes nothing else will do.  That's why I reach for the iron skillet when I have a craving and make an easy upside down cake.  It's hard to mess them up and I love how pretty much any ripe fruit is fair game for topping.  I used pears here.  It can be a good way to salvage fruit that is getting close to being over-ripe.  They may not look professional, unless you get fussy.  (Or unless you really know what you're doing). But they always taste damn good.