First ever Culinary Cruise appearance, November 9-16, 2013.
I would LOVE for you to join me. Click here to see the gorgeous Mexican Coastal Cruise experience. I will be doing live demonstrations and working with the chefs to have special dishes for the participants to savor.
On May 29, 2013 at 2 PM Jane will present a Grilling Demonstration at the Corrales Library.
For more information and to sign up, click on the specific dates you are interested in.
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The complete book of all the Mexican regional recipes taught in the award winning Fairmont-Princess Cooking School in Scottsdale. Has such favorites as Rellenos en Nogado, Pollo Cauchate, Mayan Chilaquiles and the luscious Tres Leches. cake. Ebook $2.99.
Delicious News!!! We have started a new blog with videos and recipes which will feature your favorite Southwestern and Mexican regional dishes. Check out our most recent posts about Green Chile Roasting, Green Chile Chicken Enchiladas and Pollo Rellenos, with many more to come on a regular basis.
We are sharing with you these videos (through YouTube) of well tested recipes from our award winning Cooking classes. Each blog post will feature a recipe with hints and tips, along with a video that will show you step by step how to easily create mouth watering Southwestern and Mexican Regional specialties.
With chicken prices at tremendous savings--I got to thinking that it is a terrific time to prepare some of those delicious classic chicken recipes.
I was able at our local Smith's Grocery chain (a division of Kroger) to get boneless skinless thighs and bone-in, skin on chicken breast at 99 cents a pound. Whippee--I bought some breasts on last Thursday and they were so good Saturday night in an India Masala grilled recipe, theat I decided to invest more and get the thighs too--because most everyone prefers the thighs in dishes like Coq au Vin and the two following Mexican chicken recipes I just love.
I am sharing my very, very favorite Coq recipe, that I spent years testing and have included it in my best-selling Hotter Than Hell book. (Don't worry--it is not too hot, just has that luscious caribe in the flour dusting mixture--which is so much tastier and better for you than black pepper. In fact, I have gotten so carried away, I am having 5 people over Saturday night for just that recipe. Two of the guests will be wine experts--a Master Sommelier and a wine writer and with whom I do the Blog Talk Radio Show with--Bold Foods for Bold Wines. The others like to cook and eat--so should be fabulous fun. I thought I would serve Buttered Egg Noodles, Asparagus with Bearnaise Sauce and an Arugula Salad with the Arugula coming from my garden with spiced pecans and gorgonzola with a simple vinaigrette dressing.
The other 2 Mexican recipes are totally delicious too. Pollo Borrachio, a Sonarran dish, is what my friend Linda Brown said is the "best thing I have ever cooked for her"--so that kind of puts it in a special class. The sauce on the chicken is just outrageous--it is rich with flavor--but not with calories--kind of hard to pull off--don't you think?
I like to serve it with Peppered (as in red, yellow and green bell peppers) Cumin Basmati Rice, Buttered Green Beans with Lemon and a simple garden salad.
The Pollo Cachuate is Asian inspired, which is not too surprising when you realize that the earliest settlers in the western areas of the Americas were from Asia. The dish is a regional favorite from Mexico City. The sauce on this chicken specialty is thickened with peanuts in a richly spiced sauce (not hot spice--but spices like cloves and cinnamon). The sauce is unbelievably delicious with the pureed tomato-sherry-spices. However, you would never know a tomatoe got close to the sauce--quite a trip--try it as soon as you can!
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Here's the recipes--
COQ au VIN
(CHICKEN IN WINE SAUCE)
This is my all-time favorite coq recipe, developed during my early New Mexico years. Fired with caribe and flamed with cognac, it’s a fabulous dish with a perfect marriage of flavors, certain to be a hit with family and guests—though you may want to hoard it all for yourself! Since this stew is so robust, accompany it with a soothing side dish. And, never, ever waste a drop of the savory sauce; if you have any leftover, freeze it for later use. It’s wonderful in all kinds of stews.
Yield: 6 servings
½ cup all-purpose flour
2 Tablespoons caribe (crushed Northern New Mexico red chile)
1 teaspoon salt
1 (3 ½ to 4 pound) broiler-fryer chicken, cut for frying
½ cup unsalted butter
6 Tablespoons cognac
1 clove garlic, minced
1 fresh bay leaf
4 sprigs fresh thyme or ½ teaspoon dried thyme
¼ cup minced flat-leaf parsley
6 small white boiling onions, peeled
½ pound fresh mushrooms, any kind, sliced
6 slices thick bacon, heavily smoked country style sliced into ½ inch pieces
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 cup Burgundy or other good quality dry red wine
French bread, cut in 1 inch cubes
1. In a paper bag or large shallow bowl, mix flour, caribe and salt. Dredge chicken in flour mixture. Meanwhile, melt butter in a large deep, heavy skillet (or in a chicken fryer) over medium-high heat. Add chicken pieces and cook until browned on all sides, turning as needed; adjust heat as necessary to prevent over-browning.
2. Add cognac to hot skillet and flame carefully, keeping a lid nearby to extinguish flames should they rise too high. When flames die, stir in garlic, bay leaf, thyme, 3 Tablespoons of the parsley, onions, mushrooms, bacon, and a generous grinding of black pepper. Pour wine over all. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover, and simmer about 45 minutes, or until chicken is tender and sauce is thickened.
3.Meanwhile, prepare Fried Croutons. In a skillet, toast French bread cubes in a mixture of half oil and half melted butter until light golden on all sides, stirring as needed. Cool.
4. To serve, place chicken on a large warmed platter and cover with sauce, arranging onions decoratively around chicken. Sprinkle croutons over the top, and then sprinkle with remaining 1 Tablespoon parsley.
Reprinted from the book “Hotter Then Hell”
This is a very yummy Sonoran chicken dish that you don’t see too often. It is somewhat reminiscent of picadillo, a cinnamon scented ground pork or beef dish accented with nuts and raisins. It is delicious served over rice, particularly peppered cumin rice. For an attractive presentation, mold the rice into a dome shape and arrange the chicken around the rice.
Yield: 6 servings
¼ cup vegetable oil
2 Tablespoons butter or margarine
2, 2 ½ lb. chickens, cut into serving pieces, or 8 chicken legs with thighs
¼ lb. cooked ham, coarsely chopped
1 cup raisins
2 cups beer (see Note, below)
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground coriander
2 garlic cloves, minced
¾ teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
½ cup piñon nuts
½ cup pimiento-stuffed olives, halved
1 Tablespoon capers, drained (optional)
1. In a heavy, flameproof casserole dish with a lid, heat oil and butter. Add chicken pieces and sauté until golden. Add ham, raisins, beer, spices, garlic, salt and pepper.
2. Cover and simmer until the chicken is tender when pierced with a fork, about 1 hour. Add the piñon nuts, olives, and capers and heat through, uncovered, about 5 minutes.
Note: You can use flat beer, or even frozen beer that’s been left from a keg.
POLLO EN CACHUATE (pictured above)
(Chicken with Peanut Sauce)
This richly flavored sauce is somewhat reminiscent of Indian curry. The dish is wonderful served with any kind of rice dish. I particularly like the Arroz con Platanos or rice with plantains or rice with any kind of beans added. Any leftovers make wonderful soft tacos. Just roll the filling in warm, fresh corn tortillas.
Yield: 6 servings
1/4 cup olive oil
1 onion, cut into chunks
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 chicken fryer, about 3 to 4 pounds, cut into serving pieces, or 6 chicken breasts or 12 thighs
1 1/2 cups chicken stock
1, 1-inch cinnamon stick (Mexican canella is best)
1/2 teaspoon allspice
1, 15 ounce can diced tomatoes or 3 tomatoes, peeled and quartered
1/2 cup shelled peanuts, plus more for garnishing, optional
1/2 cup dry sherry
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 fresh jalapeno, minced
1. Heat the oil, about 1/8 cup in a skillet, sauté the onion and garlic until clear and slightly brown; then add cinnamon and allspice. Remove with a slotted spoon and transfer to a blender.
2. Heat the rest of the oil in the same skillet and add the chicken. Sauté until golden brown on both sides. Add the stock and cook until the chicken is tender, about 30 minutes. Drain and reserve the stock.
3. To the blender, add the tomatoes, peanuts and ½ cup or more of the reserved stock. Blend until the sauce is very smooth, add the sherry and the jalapeno.
4. Pour into the skillet containing the chicken. Cook, covered over low heat, until the sauce thickens slightly. Taste and adjust seasonings. Serve with a rice mold.
Notes: This dish can be served with rice or small new potatoes that have been steamed. You may also want to add some of the peanuts—sprinkle some on top of the sauce over the chicken, as you are serving.
Spring is finally making a grand appearance in my yard. I just love spring blossoms. I am sharing a photo of my apple and pear trees. We had a very, very cold spell in February that wiped out the peach blossoms, but the rest are gorgeous!
Around here, March was truly mad--amazingly busy, almost frantic. We hardly had time to catch our breath between events and just plain busy-ness. So sorry I never got one blog out. I am going to try to blog at least once a week, and on Mondays if at all possible.
We went to Santa Fe to open the new gourmet appliance store, Builders Source, which is just plain gorgeous. The store is arranged in little vignette kitchens, each with different color schemes and brands of appliances. Some of the vignettes are used to show different appliances...such as the new steam oven. Having worked in appliances for 17 years, I am always interested in seeing the latest features. With the new steam ovens--you can get them either with convection or just steam. Somehow having convection with steam doesn't make sense--I guess it is just blowing air into the steam--not sure how this would speed things up.
Then we were just running around thither and yon in Albuquerque. One Saturday, I conducted a fifth anniversary cooking class for a young couple. They wanted to master Beef Wellington. so we did Beef Wellington, Gingered Carrots, Herbed Italian Potatoes and Bananas Foster.
With such busy times, I did a lot of quick and easy recipes--in fact we just got out our April e-newsletter with 5 of the recipes I made for dinners during the month. If you are not on my newsletter list, go to the home page of my website at www.janebutel.com and register for the subscription newsletter, on the right panel.
A recipe that is featured in my newsletter is a stuffed chicken breast with green chiles and cheddar with a crispy crust and blanketed in Salsa. The dish is from my Quick and Easy Southwestern Cookbook and can be done in less than 20 inutes with 5 ingredients for the recipe and only 205 calories! A picture of the recipe is featured on my website and I am including it here--so you can see it!
Here's the recipe--
POLLO RELLENOS WITH SALSA GARNISH
Relleno in Spanish means stuffed. Here, I have stuffed the chicken breasts with cheese and green chile, then coated them with a crispy coating. The traditional Salsa Fresca is wonderful as an accompaniment.
Yield: 4 servings
4 boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, trimmed of any fat or sinew (see note)
2 Tablespoons low-fat Cheddar Cheese or more to suit taste
2 Tablespoons chopped green chile (canned or frozen) or more to suit taste
¼ cup skim milk or buttermilk
½ cup cornflake crumbs (see note)
Salsa Fresca, optional
1. Rinse the chicken and pat dry. Pound with a tenderizer mallet or the flat side of a heavy knife. Lay the chicken breasts out flat and divide the cheese and chiles among them.
Roll the chicken and fasten with toothpicks or skewers, tucking in the sides to hold the cheese mixture. Dip in the milk to coat uniformly then dip into the cornflake crumbs.
2. Place in a microwave-safe baking dish, cover with wax paper, and cook on high for 10 to 12 minutes. Meanwhile, combine the Salsa Fresca, if using. Spoon a ribbon of salsa over each serving.
Note: You may need more corn flake crumbs for larger breasts. Boneless, skinless thighs can be substituted, if preferred. Cheese-cracker crumbs can be substituted for the cornflake crumbs, but they contain more fat.
February is really starting out to be a chock-a-block full month, kicked off with a New Mexico Style TV show on our local Fox affiliate. I demonstrated my favorite recipe for Classic Chile Con Queso as a perfect snacking recipe for Super Bowl watching. I am sharing it here--
CHILE CON QUESO
Literally translated, this is chile with cheese and is the Southwest’s most popular hot dip. Serve warm with tortilla chips. Chile con queso may be poured into a rigid container or freezer bags and frozen for up to four months.
Yield: 2 cups
1/3 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup finely chopped onions or 3 green onions with the tender white green tops, chopped
1 clove garlic, finely minced
1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
3/4 cup evaporated milk (1/2 large can)
1 pound processed cheese food, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 cup mixed shredded Monterey Jack and Cheddar cheese
1 medium-size tomato, chopped
3 Tablespoons finely minced fresh jalapeno chile
Corn tortilla chips or tostados
1. Heat oil in a heavy saucepan. Add onion and garlic and sauté until onions are softened. Stir in flour until well mixed.
2. Gradually stir in evaporated milk and cook, stirring, until mixture thickens slightly.
3. Add cheeses and cook and stir over very low heat, until the mixture becomes smooth. Then add tomato and chile. Cook, stirring to prevent sticking for about a minute or two and serve. You can serve directly from the pan on the range for a party or serve from a chafing dish or fondue pot. Leftover chile con queso is excellent spooned over crisp tortillas for instant nachos, or over hamburgers, under steak or in omelets.
We had a very fun group attend our February weekend, for the first time ever, I think; we had an all local crowd. They were all very careful cooks--producing yummy foods and had lots of fun cooking together. It was bitter cold, so we actually did all of our cooking inside--except for deep frying the sopaipillas...and roasting the fresh green chiles.
Here's the class photo and Katie (left) and Mary frying sopaipillas.
Early each December or immediately after Thanksgiving, I always sort through my family recipes and review cookbooks for new ideas for the cookies and candies I will make for the holidays. Since I just love to cook, it is great fun baking and candy making sometimes alone, and often with friends or my daughter and grand daughter.
This year I didn't have a Grand Holiday Party, but instead had lots of smaller dinner and cocktail parties. I made my favorite cookies--the Lemon Bars which I put in the new Chili Madness cookbook, the Sinful Brownies I am including, and the Adobe Bars. The Brownies went so quickly, I had to make them twice. Then for candies, I made my favorite Marshmallow Creme Fudge with pecans and Red Chle Peanut Brittle, both of which are really popular.
The other traditional recipe I made, which I started making in the 60's (really dates me) is Stollen, which is a recipe I worked on until I got it just right for my taste--it is rich, dense and buttery just loaded with tons of candied fruit and nuts. I took a picture this year of how it looks right out of the oven for you to see. To serve, you brush it with melted butter and then dust with powdered sugar. It is amazingly delicious with champagne, which we always serve with it Christmas morning. I had a small group of 7 close friends over Christmas morning to enjoy it and all the cookies and candies I had made. My daughter, husband and grand daughter then came to have some before sharing our presents.
For Christmas dinner, I prepared Beef en Wellington, for the first time in years. To keep the Christmas Day cooking to a minimum, I prepared the Mushroom Duxelle a day ahead and used prepared puff pastry. Also, I made the Swedish Scalloped Potatoes and Grandma's Date Pudding the day before. Lemon Buttered Green Beans completed our Dinner. I served the Date Pudding with freshly made Vanilla Laced Whipped Cream for dessert. Yummy. And, I served a 2005 Chiripada Cabernet Sauvignon with the dinner--long to be remembered.
Following are the Brownie and Stollen recipes.
The best of all stollens—I worked on this recipe for years and feel it is well worth the extra effort. For years I’ve been making a recipe every other year for serving on Christmas morning with champagne.
Temperature: 325 F
Baking time: 1 hour
Yield: 2 large loaves
¾ cup unsalted butter
½ cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon mace (if you do not have mace, substitute more nutmeg)
Grated rind of 1 lemon
Grated rind of ½ orange
¼ cup dark rum, brandy or sherry
1 cup milk 1 package active dry yeast
¼ cup warm water
6 cups all-purpose flour, approximately
1 cup raisins
1 cup currants (if unavailable, substitute more raisins)
¼ pound each candied orange peel, lemon peel, and citron
1 slice candied pineapple
1 cup toasted almonds1 ½ pound candied whole red and green cherries
¼ cup melted butter
1. Cream butter, add sugar gradually and cream until fluffy. Blend in salt, nutmeg, mace, lemon and orange rind.
2. Add eggs. One at a time, beating well after each addition. Add liquor and milk.
3. Soften yeast in water and stir into mixture. Add flour until dough is easy to handle. Turn out on a lightly floured board and knead until the dough is satin smooth and the gluten is well developed.
4. Do not add more than ½ cup flour into the dough while kneading as too much flour will make the bread dry and coarse.
5. Mix together all fruit except cherries, then dredge with ¼ cup flour, making sure each piece is covered.
6. When the dough is smooth, add the fruit and almonds, a small amount at a time, until the fruit is spread throughout the dough and all is used.
7. Poke holes in the dough with your forefinger and place a cherry in each hole. This prevents mashing the cherries.
8. Divide the dough in half and place in large well-greased bowls; brush generously with melted butter and set a warm place to rise. Since the dough is heavy with fruit, it will require about 8 hours to rise.
9. 9. To form, turn out on a lightly floured board, punch down and divide in half. To make typical stollen or crescent shaped loaves, first pat the dough into an oblong shape, then fold in half lengthwise.
10. Place loaves on a greased baking sheet; brush with butter and let rise until doubled.
11. Preheat oven to 325F during last 10 minutes of rising.
12. 12. Bake for 1 hour, brush several times with melted butter as the loaves are baking. When baked, dust generously with powdered sugar just before serving. Serve warm.
Reprinted with permission from Jane Butel’s Freezer Cookbook.
These are moist, rich and almost sinful. They are truly delicious!
Oven Temperature: 375°F Baking Time: 25 minutes
Yield: 1, 9” square pan
1½ cups (or 3 sticks) butter or margarine
2 cups sugar
3 squares bitter chocolate, melted
2 teaspoons Mexican Vanilla
Pinch of salt
1 cup flour
4 eggs, separated – beat yolks till lemon yellow – whites till stiff
1 cup chopped walnuts
1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
2. Cream butter using an electric mixer on medium speed. Add sugar, egg yolks, chocolate and vanilla. Mix on low to combine, then mix well on medium. With mixer turned off, add flour and nuts, then switch to low and mix well. Fold in egg whites using lowest speed for the shortest time possible or fold in by hand.
3. Butter well, then flour a 9-inch square pan. Bake until firm to the touch, about 25 minutes. Do not overbake.
Variation: Sprinkle with 1 or more Tablespoons chile caribe on the batter before baking for a nice spicy touch!
We had a delicious and memorable time touring Northern New Mexico--never to be forgotten--all 9 of us touring the beautiful Rio Grande valley, with its fabulous foliage and delightful and historic sites all along the way from Albuquerque to Taos.
We started late Saturday afternoon in Albuquerque with a wine tasting in the beautiful Casa Rodena winery in the north valley of Albuquerque and continued up the valley to dine at the El Pinto, known for its New Mexican food.
Excitedly, we packed ourselves into the van for our tour to Taos via Santa Fe. The views were brilliant with golden cottonwoods and willows lining the stream beds and shadows accented by the occasional cloud on the stark mountains lining our way.
Our first stop was the La Chirapda winery, the first winery to reestablish after Prohibion in Northern New Mexico. Their European styled wines are excellent and were a treat to the palate before winding our way into Taos for the evening and the next two days.
We stayed at the charming and beautiful Casa Benavidez, nestled just a short walk from the main Plaza of Taos, the nation's first art colony and a very historic city--once the capital of the New Mexico territory. Following a get acquainted walk about the picturesque streets of Taos--each of us dressed for an elegant dinner at Lambert's, where they totally knocked themselves out. Rated the best in Taos for the past few years, the food is so creative and delicious. The executive chef and his 3 sous chefs reviewed how they created the evening's specialties, which delighted each of us.
The next day, we visited the historic Taos Pueblo, the only remaining multi-story dwelling of all New Mexico's Indian Pueblos. Well over 1000 years old, each wanted to stay longer, but did join us the tour of Milicent Rogers (the Standard Oil heiress) collection of art, jewelry, pottery and all manner of Indian artifacts.
After a free afternoon, I presented a full participation cooking class of Northern New Mexican dishes. All were wonderful cooks and created a truly delicious dinner.
The next day, we took the high road from Taos to Chimayo--touring along the barest wisp of a road along the peaks of the tallest mountains in the state--viewing little villanges created by the Spanish over 400 years ago and home to many artists. We lunched at the quaint Rancho de Chimayo on Northern New Mexican specialties.
In the afternoon, we arrived in Santa Fe and checked into the newly refurbished St. Francis Hotel--just steps from the famous Plaza. Following an afternoon of free time, we dined on traditional, beautifully prepared Northern New Mexican dishes, once again, innovatively prepared by Estaban Garcia, the Executive Chef of the St. Francis.
The next morning, we all went to Canyon Road, the mecca for art and one of the most famous art gallery areas of the world. Following some gallery and store browsing--we lunched together in a Spanish tapas restaurant set in the oldest restaurant building in Santa Fe. The rest of the afternoon and evening was free.
The last day came up far too quickly!! Most all of us toured the museums around the plaza--joining in a group to lunch at the Shed, a delicious 1960's feeling restaurant that is very, very popular--always having a long wait-time for eating in their quaint and charming dining rooms--a part of the famous Sena Plaza, a block from Santa Fe's Plaza. Their specialty is Northern New Mexican food.
Our farewell dinner was spectacular. Chef Martine, a third generation chef from Guadalajara creates the most amazingly delicious and innovative dishes, all decorated with a very fine, artistic hand. Each beautiful dish was totally enjoyed and enhanced by the chef reviewing his hints for creating each.
We all said our reluctant goodbys and look forward to seeing each other again!