Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Enchiladas Huastecas con Cecina

1/4 lb queso fresco
1 can refried beans (La Costena brand)
1 tsp unsalted butter
1/2 lb Cecina de Res  (a thin salt-cured beef)
4 corn tortillas (La Providencia or El Milagro brand)

Marinate the Cecina in orange juice about 20 minutes. Then rinse with water.
Grate the fresh cheese
Warm the black beans in butter (add water if too thick)
Heat a griddle to sear the Cecina for 2 minutes on a dry pan, turn and fry for 1 minute.
Warm up the tortillas on each side in a dry heated pan
Fill the tortillas with grated cheese and fold over
To serve:  Plate the enchilada and black beans with Salsa Verde and garnished with some grated fresh cheese.  Place the cooked cecina on the side.  Pass around the Spicy Green salsa.

This recipe comes from the Mexican state of San Luis Potosi.

Picante Salsa Verde Cruda

4 serrano peppers
1 garlic clove
1/3 c water
1/4 white onion
1/4 c minced cilantro leaves

Puree all ingredients in a blender until smooth.
Salt to taste.

Very spicy salsa to serve with Mexican food

Salsa Verde

4 c water
1 serrano chile
6 medium tomatillos (husk removed and washed)
1/3 medium onion
2 medium garlic cloves
2/3 tsp dry chicken bouillon

Bring the 4 coups of water to a boil in a medium size pot.  Add the chile and boil 5 minutes, covered.

Add tomatillos and cook for another 5 minutes until they change color to a pale green but before they fall apart.  Drain the chile and tomatillos reserving 1/4 cup.

Blend for 20 seconds with the onion, garlic & reserved water. You want the salsa to have some texture and not be too smooth.

Cook the salsa in a medium pan and add boullion.  Cook covered one minute before serving. Save in a glass jar.

Serve warm with enchiladas or tamales.

Filipino Spanish Bread

Filipino Spanish bread is a popular 'merienda' in the Philippines with a sweet buttery filling for your afternoon snack.


3 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons instant dry yeast
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup milk
3 tablespoons butter / margarine, melted
1 egg

1/4 cup butter
2 teaspoons flour
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1/8 cup water or milk
1/2 cup brown sugar /white sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt butter - for brushing

2 tablespoon milk - or water
1/2 cup bread crumbs


1. In a big bowl, mix together flour and yeast. In a smaller bowl, combine sugar, salt, milk and margarine or butter. Warm liquids in the microwave for 1 minute on high power. Remove from microwave and add the egg and beat several times until well blended.

2. Pour the liquid mixture over the flour mixture and fold until a dough forms. Knead the dough on a clean surface dusted with flour until it becomes smooth and elastic, about 5-10 minutes. 

3. Form the dough into a ball and place the dough in a greased bowl cover with a kitchen towel or plastic wrap and place it in a warm area and let it rise until it doubled in size. Depending how warm it is, could take 30 minutes to an hour. 

4. Meanwhile, prepare the filling. In a saucepan over medium-low heat, melt butter. Add the flour and 1/4 cup bread crumbs and mix well. Once it starts to boil, add water or milk, sugar, salt and rest of breadcrumbs. Cook until it gets thick. Remove from heat and continue stirring until it forms paste-like texture. 

5. Punch down the dough and divide into 16 equal parts using a knife of dough slicer. Roll each piece into a long triangle (like a pizza slice). Brush the middle part with butter or margarine then spread filling on the surface leaving about a centimeter around the edges unfilled. Jelly-roll from the wider end towards the smaller end. 

6. Brush each rolled dough with milk or water then roll it on a plate of breadcrumbs and place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper: make sure that the end part sits at the bottom so it won't open up while baking. Cover with cloth or kitchen towel or cling wrap and let them rise for another 10-15 minutes. Remove cover before baking. 

7. Place the baking sheet on the middle rack and bake at 350°F for 20 minutes. 

You may also use active dry yeast but it needs to be proofed first by dissolving it in lukewarm water or, in this case, in the milk with a tablespoon sugar (taken from the ingredients for dough)

Dark Chocolate Mousse


·         3 1/2 ounces dark chocolate, chopped
·         1 tablespoon butter
·         2 tablespoons water
·         1/8 teaspoon ground dried chipotle pepper
·         1 tiny pinch salt 
·         2 large egg yolks
·         2 tablespoons water
·         1 tablespoon white sugar
·         1/2 cup heavy whipping cream, chilled
·         1 tablespoon heavy whipping cream, chilled

  1. Bring a saucepan of water to a simmer over low heat. Place chocolate, butter, 2 tablespoons water, ground chipotle pepper, and salt in a heatproof bowl; set bowl over the simmering water. When the butter melts, whisk the chocolate mixture gently until smooth and shiny. Set aside to cool for a few minutes.
  2. Whisk egg yolks, 2 tablespoons water, and sugar in another heatproof bowl over the same pan of simmering water until egg yolk mixture is foamy and hot to the touch, about 3 minutes. Pour hot egg mixture into warm chocolate mixture, whisk until smooth, and set over a bowl of ice to chill. Whisk constantly until mixture has cooled to room temperature or slightly cooler.
  3. Pour 1/2 cup and 1 tablespoon cold cream into a chilled metal bowl; whisk until cream holds soft peaks. Place about half the whipped cream into the cooled chocolate mixture; gently fold the cream into the chocolate. Repeat with remaining half of whipped cream, folding gently until nearly all the streaks have disappeared. Divide mousse into 4 6-ounce ramekins.
  4. Cover each ramekin with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 4 hours (up to overnight) before serving.  Serve with a dollop of whipped cream and some shaved chocolate atop.

Chili Lime Corn Salad


8 ears fresh corn, cooked and cooled
¼ cup chopped parsley
3 tbsp finely chopped sundried tomatoes (I have used fresh tomato)
2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
grated zest and juice of ½ lime
½ tsp chili powder
½ tsp salt (suggestion: Himalayan salt)
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
⅛ tsp ground cumin


1. Cut kernels off the cobs (about 4 cups) and place them into a large bowl.
2. Throw in the rest of the ingredients and toss to combine.
3. Serve immediately or place in the fridge for about an hour to allow flavors to meld.
4. This salad will keep well for 2 to 3 days in the refrigerator.

This recipe serves 8 people. I usually halve the recipe or even just make it with 2 ears of corn for two people.

Salmon en croute

  • 1 side of salmon, about 900g, skinned
  • A little olive oil
  • 1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • Generous handful of basil leaves
  • Small handful of dill leaves
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
  • 500 g shortcrust pastry  (double crust size i.e, 2 cups flour, 1 tsp salt, 1/2 c butter 1/2 c water)
  • Plain flour, to dust
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten
1.                   Check the salmon for pin bones, removing any that you find with tweezers, then cut in half. Line a baking tray with a lightly oiled piece of foil.
2.                   Mix the softened butter with the lemon zest, basil, dill and some salt and pepper in a bowl, to make the filling.
3.                   Pat the salmon fillets dry with kitchen paper, then season lightly with salt and pepper. Spread the herb butter over one fillet, on the boned side, and the mustard evenly on the other fillet. Sandwich the two salmon fillets together, in opposite directions so both ends are of an even thickness.
4.                   Roll out the pastry thinly on a lightly floured surface to a rectangle, the thickness of a £1 coin and large enough to enclose the salmon. Put the salmon parcel in the centre of the pastry and brush the surrounding pastry with egg. Bring up the edges, trimming off any excess, and tuck them in before folding the rest of the pastry over to form a neat parcel. Carefully turn the whole thing over so that the seam is underneath and place on the prepared baking tray.
5.                   Brush the pastry with beaten egg. Lightly score a herringbone or cross-hatch pattern using the back of a knife. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cover loosely and chill for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, heat the oven to 400°F.
6.                   Bake the salmon for 20-25 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown and crisp. To test if ready, insert a skewer into the middle. It should feel warm for medium cooked salmon. A piping hot skewer indicates that the fish is well done.
7.                   Rest the salmon for 5 minutes, then cut into portions using a serrated knife. Serve with hollandaise sauce, new potatoes and broccoli or minted peas.

From Gordon Ramsay