With times like these, getting one's mind involved with happy or fun thoughts is the best. My Swedish grandmother always had a sunny outlook. She would say, "it's always darkest before the dawn." And being a great cook and an avid gardener, she would proceed to the kitchen to create something wonderful. Following her memory, I have been having fun cooking spicy delicious slow cooking dishes.
In my "Hotter Than Hell" cookbook, I really enjoyed testing and developing a spicy slant to dishes--some of them continental favorites, such as Coq au Vin (French chicken with wine dish) or Beef Bournignone . Both dishes are really better kicked up a bit with chiles. You can even add chiles to popular fruit pastries and other dishes. (Recipes follow.) Let your imagination take charge! To share this fun cookbook with you, I am offering it for only $15.00 through Sunday, January 17, 2021. Our hot, mild and caribe chiles will be 20% off through Sunday, January 17, 2021.
I have been working every spare moment on writing my memoir, which is both a great memory as well as filled with a bit of regret here and there. It is always fun to reflect though. I must admit I have had some really great "highs" and very regrettable lows. I will keep you posted when it gets published.
We are continuing our half sized classes. The next one is our Specialty and Basic Bread Baking class January 28, followed by our next weekend class, February 5 - 7 Take a Tortilla and.., on February 18 and Taco Mania March 4.
March 15 - 19 is our next week long class. The next Oaxaca Cuinary tour is set for June 15 - 21, 2021. If you want to make your registration and make payments--your first payment is due NOW as the second payment will be drawn on January 15. Any questions, please call me at 505-243-2622. With full payment you get 10% off.
And for in-home learning we have a comprehensive online course, "All About Chile" which is on sale at 20% off and a video on tamale making, "Tamale Roll. "
COQ AU VIN
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
Cooking Time: 1 hour
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
- 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.
- 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.
- 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.
- 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”
BITCHY BEEF BOURUIGNONNE
Hearty and ornery, this deeply colored, rich flavored stew is wonderful to make and eat on foggy, rainy days at any time of year. But, if you live in a sunny climate, don’t wait for bad weather—go ahead and try it. Everybody will love it! Serve it on a bed of thick, flavorful buttered, parslied egg noodles or with crusty, fresh French bread oozing with sweet butter.
Yield: 6 to 8 servings
1 large onion, coarsely chopped
2 Tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley or 1 Tablespoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaf, crushed
2 bay leaves
2 Tablespoons coarsely ground black pepper
2 Tablespoons crushed caribe chile
2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
3 cups rich, dry, red wine
3 pounds sirloin, bottom round or London broil, cut in 1 inch cubes
¼ cup unsalted sweet butter
¼ cup brandy
2 cups double strength beef broth
1 pint, baby portabellos or 36 small white boiling onions
2 large cloves garlic, minced
Salt, if desired
- Combine the chopped onion, parsley, thyme, bay leaves, black pepper, caribe chile, oil and wine in a 2 quart glass or stainless steel bowl. Stir to blend well. Add beef, stir and let stand 2 hours at room temperature, stirring occasionally.
- Melt 2 Tablespoons butter in a large heavy pot. Drain beef cubes, reserving marinade. Add beef to pot. Cook until browned, stirring as needed. Add brandy and flame carefully, stirring it so it ignites well. Add broth and reserved marinade. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer 2 to 3 hours or until beef is fork tender.
- Meanwhile, prepare onions if using. Cut stem and root ends off and then pop onions out of their skins. Melt remaining 2 Tablespoons butter in a heavy skillet and add the onions or mushrooms and garlic. Cook until onions or mushrooms are golden brown. Add to stew and simmer at least 30 minutes longer. Taste and add salt, more wine or other seasonings as desired.
Reprinted from the book "Hotter Than Hell" by Jane Butel.