I think most all of us are going to be so-o-o glad to see 2020 GO! All of us sure are. One thing for certain--when you can't control circumstances, make the best of what you can contol. Cooking is always a great pastime. It is one of the few art forms you can get immediate gratification from. With this in mind, I am offering all who would like to start our next on-line "All About Chiles" class a 20% off discount until the end of this year.
This next online class starts on January 18 and you are able to go at your own pace. The class is all online text with tons of great to know facts about chiles leading into how to cook with all manner of chiles. Chiles are such a health booster and so good for you year round. With the class, you will receive over 150 well tested recipes with the grocery lists and you can prepare the dishes you wish to make. You will also receive an assortment of chiles, herbs, a DVD on making chili, my Southwestern Kitchen book that backed up my PBS series and is rated the "Bible of Southwestern cookery" by Publishers Weekly. I will always be available for assistance also.
And if you like video classes, my new "Tamale Roll" educational video is available. You may watch it as often as you like but you can not download it.
We are being optimistic about the new year. Our next class is the rescheduled "Red Chile Fiesta on January 14, which is full; followed by a Specialty Breads and Bread Basics Baking class on January 28. As always the classes are 100% full participation and half size now during the Pandemic and we do wear masks as much as possible. There is still room in the Bread Baking class.
And now for the good old days when I had a New Year's eve party nearly every year. Ages ago, we always had a huge party that sometimes seemed to never quit. Around 2 to 3 AM or later, I would make Red Chile Beef Enchiladas with an egg for those who wished it. They are a great "sobering up" dish and people would finally be on their way. Following is my favorite recipe for the enchiladas. (For a vegetarian version, just omit the beef).
Then in more recent years we often staged a triple fondue party which is a lot of fun--especially if any man dropped their bread, beef or fruit in the fondue--they had to go around the table in Swiss fashion and kiss all the women. Ditto for women who dropped their morsel--they would have to kiss each of the men. For the fondue party, I have fondue plates and three fondue pots. We would start with the cheese fondue and dip squares of French bread into it, then morph into the beef fondue where they would dip the pieces of Prime Beef into hot peanut oil. I always like to have about five dipping sauces--Bearnaise Sauce, Creamy Dill, Horseradish Sauce, Barbecue Sauce and Anchovy Butter. They could also dip the cooked beef into the Cheese Fondue if they wished.
Then for dessert, I would prepare squares of pound or angel food cake, strawberries and fresh pineapple for dipping into the chocolate fondue. I always enjoyed these parties, which have limited preparation, all of which can be prepared ahead of time.
I look forward to cooking and hearing from you and wish you the healthiest and happiest of New Years!
Here's the Enchilada and Beef Fondue recipes--
RED CHILE BEEF ENCHILADAS
This is one of my very favorite dishes, especially when made with blue corn tortillas. It is a popular custom in New Mexico to place a soft-fried egg on top of each enchilada as soon as they come out of the oven.
Yield: 4-6 servings
12 white, yellow or blue corn tortillas
1 recipe, Red Chile Sauce (recipe attached), made with beef (omit beef for vegetarian version)
About 1 cup shredded Monterey Jack or Cheddar cheese
1 onion, chopped (may be cooked into the sauce)
4 eggs (optional), soft fried or poached
6 to 8 lettuce leaves (optional), coarsely chopped(best to have half Romaine which is heat tolerant and half red leaf)
2 ripe tomatoes (optional), cut in 24 thin wedges
1. Preheat oven to 350F. For Flat Enchiladas: Place a little chile sauce on a heat tolerant plate, then top with a tortilla followed by cheese, onion, and more sauce. Repeat once or twice more, making a stack of 2 or 3 tortillas layered with cheese, onion, and sauce (see Note). Top each enchilada with more sauce and cheese. Place in the preheated oven until the cheese melts. Top with an egg, if desired, and garnish with the coarsely chopped lettuce, placing the Romaine first, followed by a frill of the red leaf and tomato wedges . Place 4 tomato wedges--each equi-distant apart. These are traditional New Mexico style.
3. For Rolled Enchiladas: Dip a lightly fried tortilla into the sauce and place a strip each of shredded cheese and chopped onion down the center. Roll up, place 2 rolled enchiladas on each plate, and top with more sauce and cheese. Place in oven until cheese melts. Arrange lettuce around the edges before serving.
Note: Three tortillas make a very hearty serving. Most people prefer two.
Red Chile Sauce
This is the basic red chile sauce used to create enchiladas and to serve over burritos, chile rellenos, tamales, and chimichangas.
Yield: 2-1/2 cups
2 Tablespoons butter, lard or bacon drippings
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup ground mild red chile
1/4 cup ground hot red chile
2 cups beef stock or water
1 garlic clove, crushed
Pinch of ground Mexican oregano
Pinch of ground cumin
3/4 teaspoon salt (if not using stock)
1. Melt butter in a medium-size saucepan over low heat. Add flour and stir until smooth and slightly golden.
Remove pan from heat and add ground chiles. Return to heat and gradually stir in stock. Add garlic, oregano, cumin, and salt, if using, and cook, stirring, about 10 minutes. Simmer at least 5 more minutes for flavors to blend.
Sauté 1 pound ground beef, or beef cut in very small cubes. Omit the shortening, and continue as directed above. Use for enchiladas.
¼ pound beef tenderloin or any tender cut per person--preferably prime quality
Peanut or vegetable oil, 1 to 2 quarts
Depending on size of fondue pot
Italian parsley for garnish
- Select the best beef you can find and cut into one-inch squares, trimming off any fat or gristle.
- 2Place the beef in a serving bowl and garnish with the parsley. Allow to set at room temperature within 2 hours of serving time.
- Prepare several sauces, being certain to always have Bearnaise Sauce as one of them—as it is so delicious with the beef.
- To serve, heat vegetable or peanut oil in fondue pot to high heat. If using sterno or alcohol, heating the oil on the range speeds up getting the oil hot.
- Provide 2 fondue forks per person and a table fork and knife. Mention to those cooking the fondue with you that they should always remove the meat from the fondue fork to prevent burning their mouth.